Cabriolet ( French cabriolet ) in its original meaning - a light uniaxial horse-drawn carriage with a folding roof, in which one horse was harnessed  ; in the modern sense - a convertible car  .
The first gigs appeared in France at the beginning of the 19th century . Soon, this type of hired passenger transport displaced heavier wagons and became very popular in Paris , London and other cities.
Modern convertible cars are equipped with a folding soft ( vinyl or canvas) or hard top. They are usually made on the basis of reinforced bodies of ordinary road sedans , hatchbacks and are equipped with only two (very rarely four) doors.
In different countries, this type of body is called differently. Derivatives of the French word Cabriolet (Cabriole) are common in continental Europe. In the UK, such cars were historically called the “Drop-head coupé” (“low-top coupe”) , and the term “Convertible” is currently used in English, especially in the US and Australia.
Also, there were and exist close types of bodies:
In the early 1960s, due to an increase in safety requirements, manufacturers began to produce convertibles in the back of a targ . Its main difference is the presence of a safety arc and a rear window. This has improved safety in the event of a rollover. The first such model was the Triumph TR4 of 1961, and in the future many European and American manufacturers began to use it.
This is a sporty, less practical for everyday use, option roadster , which is single or double. The body - like the roadster of the open type, there are usually two side doors. Windshield, rear and / or side windows are often low or absent at all. The speedster may not have a folding or rigid roof, due to the low windshield (if possible, the roof can be installed completely manually, as on classic models).
All this affects the performance of the machine (for example, discomfort during winter riding, the need to wear a helmet with a missing windshield), so today manufacturers practically do not produce such mass production models, although in the first half of the 20th century this type of body was very popular. But large manufacturers sometimes produce small series of speedsters, which are modifications of production models, for example, the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren Stirling Moss , officially shown in 2008 or the Porsche 911 Speedster ( 997 ), officially shown in 2010. In addition, there are a number of small companies that produce cars with a retro design or create replicas of classic models with this type of body. Also, this type of body is found on racing models, for example, on Le Mans prototypes .
Roadster and Cabriolet Gallery
Ford Model T
Bentley 4½ Liter 1929
Ford Phaeton 1934
Lancia D23 Spyder 1953
1955 Porsche 550 Spyder
Audi R8 Spyder
Mini Cooper Convertible
Renault Megane CC
Chrysler 300C Convertible
Lincoln town car