Skip to main content

15 Unconventional Car Door Designs That Make People Look Twice

Forget the roar of the engine or the sleek curves of the body. Today, we’re all about the grand entrance! Did you know the very first car doors were located at the back, like a carriage? But those days are long gone, replaced by a world of automotive ingenuity and, sometimes, delightful weirdness. So, get …

Forget the roar of the engine or the sleek curves of the body. Today, we’re all about the grand entrance! Did you know the very first car doors were located at the back, like a carriage? But those days are long gone, replaced by a world of automotive ingenuity and, sometimes, delightful weirdness. So, get ready, gearheads and design enthusiasts, because we’re taking a joyride through the most outrageous and ingenious car door designs ever to grace the asphalt.

Graham Type 97 Sharknose – 1938

Lars-Göran Lindgren Sweden/Wikipedia

The Spirit of Motion, more popularly known as the Sharknose Graham, was a pioneer in aerodynamic design. Introduced in 1938 by the Graham brothers, it had doors hinged at the front and opened with a forward swing—a head-turning feature that mimicked the gills of a shark.

Koenigsegg Agera RS – 2015

Norbert Aepli/Wikipedia

Koenigsegg is known for pushing boundaries, and the Agera RS is no exception. This hypercar boasts a pair of “dihedral” doors, also known as scissor doors, that rise diagonally when opened, adding a touch of drama. They free up valuable space beside the car for easier entry and exit. 

Nissan Vmotion 2.0 Concept – 2016


Vmotion 2.0 features e-Corner technology, where all four wheels can turn independently. This allowed the entire side of the car to swing upwards, creating a dramatic entrance with unmatched ease of access. The disappearing door design is a glimpse into the future of innovative car access.

Mercedes-Benz 300 SL – 1954

M 93/Wikipedia

A true classic, the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL introduced the world to gullwing doors in 1954. These doors hinged upwards from the roof, resembling the wings of a seagull. Gullwing doors provided ample space for entry and exit, even for tall passengers. Yet, they required significant headroom for operation, making them impractical in many garages.  

Cadillac Ciel – 2011 


Introduced in 2011, the Ciel featured suicide doors, also known as coach doors. Unlike traditional doors, these hinge at the rear pillar, opening backward against the traffic flow. They provide a wider opening for easier entry and exit, particularly for passengers in the back seat. They also add a touch of sophistication. 

Bertone Ramarro Concept – 1984

Marco 56/Wikipedia

This wild concept car from 1984 pushed the boundaries of design in every way, including the doors. The Ramarro featured canopy doors, where the entire roof and windshield hinge upwards to reveal the cabin. They offered a completely unobstructed entryway, perfect for a dramatic entrance and showcasing the car’s luxurious interior.

Kaiser Darrin – 1954

Ralf Roletschek/Wikipedia

The Kaiser Darrin, a luxury convertible from the 1950s, offered a unique take on door design. This car featured sliding doors that retract into the front fenders, creating a sleek and seamless look. However, sliding doors could be more complex and expensive to maintain than hinged doors.  

Aston Martin Bulldog – 1979


Aston Martin’s rendition hinged at the roof and windshield, creating a truly theatrical entryway with gullwing doors. The double-hinged gullwing doors on the Bulldog were a dramatic statement, making the car look like it was ready to take flight. Yet, the complex hinge mechanism added weight and maintenance costs.

Mini Clubman – 2007

M 93/Wikipedia

Forget the standard two-door setup. The 2007 Mini Clubman dared to be different with its innovative split-door design on the passenger side. Imagine a regular car door seamlessly fused with a miniature barn door! This ingenious solution offered unmatched practicality, especially when navigating tight parking spaces. The split door allowed for easy access to the rear seats, a game-changer for passengers and cargo alike.

McLaren F1 – 1996


McLaren took its scissor doors a step further as they hinge upwards and forwards, offering a truly unique entry experience. Like other scissor doors, they offered benefits in tight spaces and complemented the car’s aerodynamic design. The forward hinge further improved access to the driver’s seat.

Mazda RX-8 – 2003 


This sporty coupe stands out with its unconventional suicide doors at the rear. However, unlike the Ciel, which had rear-hinged doors for all passengers, the RX-8 only has them for the back seats, with traditional front doors for the driver and passenger. The mix of front-hinged and rear suicide doors offered both practicality and style. 

Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale – 1967

Brian Snelson/Wikipedia

Car lovers were fascinated by Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale’s butterfly doors. They hinged upwards from the center of the roof, resembling butterfly wings, representing a necessity due to the car’s low roofline. However, similar to canopy doors, butterfly doors were highly impractical and, hence, not replicated despite their visual appeal.  

Firebird III Concept – 1958


General Motors’ 1958 Firebird III concept car was a dream of the future, and the doors were no exception. This futuristic machine featured gullwing doors that hinged upwards from the roof and slid along the roofline before pivoting upwards. The double-action gullwing doors were a technological marvel, adding a layer of complexity to the car’s design.

McLaren P1 – 2013


Like its predecessor, the F1, the McLaren P1 features dihedral or scissor doors. However, the P1’s doors took a slightly different approach. They hinged upwards and slightly outwards, offering a more natural and comfortable entry and exit motion. 

Lamborghini Marzal – 1967

Matti Blume/Wikipedia

Lamborghini, never one to shy away from bold design, offered a unique take on car doors with the 1967 Marzal concept. This stylish car featured canopy doors — the entire roof hinged upwards, with a scissor-like action at the windshield for easier entry.