Sometimes the standard two-hinge, horizontal-shifting car door just doesn’t cut it. Many vehicle owners may be surprised to know how many distinctive vehicle door designs are available in the market, particularly the ever-popular vertical doors. Even in such types of doors, there are several options available that differ in where the hinge is placed and which direction it opens. Two of the most popular vertical door types are scissor doors and butterfly doors. Both seem similar in appearance and function, but there are a few notable differences between the two.
Turborevs has highlighted these differences below to help you decide which type is suitable for your particular vehicle.
Scissor doors are credited for bringing about innovative car door designs first in the market. They date back to the 1970s with the iconic Countach. Today, they have become synonymous with Lamborghinis — which is why they are often referred to as ‘Lambo’ doors — and can often be seen (or a variation of them can be seen) in their latest models. For instance, the supercar Aventador features doors that open slightly outward at an angle, which can be categorised as scissor doors.
The original doors tend to open vertically in a rotational manner, via a hinge placed on the bottom front corner of the door. Since they pivot upwards behind the fender, they have been named ‘scissor doors’, similar to scissor blades.
On the other hand, butterfly doors open vertically as well as extend away from the car — hence, resembling the movement of a butterfly’s wings. While the lower half rotates away from the body, the top half extends towards the windshield. The hinges are placed at the top corner of the door, to allow it to open both upwards and outwards.
Butterfly doors generally feature in high-end sports cars.
Installing scissor doors can be less easy in comparison to butterfly doors. The sophisticated mechanism of the latter allows much more natural and smooth movements, whereas scissor doors may feel rather stiff when opening or closing, after replacing conventional doors in certain car models.
As scissor doors move upwards via hinge points at the bottom of the vehicle’s A-pillar and butterfly doors move upwards and outwards via hinges along the A-pillar, the latter make it easier to enter and exit. In fact, this is why butterfly doors have become more popular over time as they have proven to be more practical in this regard.
However, it is important to note that both types of doors make it difficult for the users to get in or out of the vehicle in spaces with low overhead clearance. In the case of butterfly doors, you would require ample horizontal room as well — otherwise, due to their unique angle, they are at the risk of hitting adjacent cars.
It has been reported that not enough information has been provided on the crash safety results of both types of doors. However, in the case of an overturned vehicle, butterfly doors theoretically make it slightly less challenging to escape as they rotate away from the body of the automobile.
If you are looking to upgrade your car’s body, you can check out Turborevs for a variety of options.