Suicide doors have peaked back in the post-WW2 era and now it seems that only a handful of manufacturers are willing and able to utilize this type of door design. Suicide, coach, or rear-hinged are the most common names associated with this door design.
The reason why most cars tend to offer normal doors is that normal doors are the best. No matter how you look at it, suicide doors are not nearly as practical. When you open rear-hinged doors completely, it’s extremely hard to pull the doors closed because they are heavy and far away.
Besides, they are called suicide doors because they are more dangerous than most doors when it comes to passenger safety. However, Rolls Royce is a brand proud of using the finest materials and mechanisms known to men, so it is hard to say that suicide doors are bad while Rolls is using them.
As mentioned, suicide doors are heavy and far away while fully opened, but Rolls offers assisted doors which make the whole process a lot easier. No matter what you think about the practicality of these doors, no one can deny how easily accessible they are and how cool they look.
Benefits of suicide doors – Why more cars should use suicide doors
Rear-hinged doors allow an easier and more graceful entry and exit out of the car which is essential on luxury cars. Doors such as these also allow chauffeurs easier access to the rear door, and it is way easier to install a child seat in a car equipped with rear-hinged doors.
Because suicide doors utilize a rear hinge, there is no need for a B pillar which can make the design of the car way more exclusive looking. As mentioned previously, Rolls Royce offers assisted suicide doors which makes them easy to open and close. However, this mechanism does not work perfectly if the ground is not leveled.
All you have to do is press a button inside the car and the doors will shut themselves completely. Rolls Royce does not offer fully assisted opening doors because this poses certain safety issues. However, Rolls did make the door opening process easier by assisting you while you are opening the doors.
Drawbacks of suicide doors – Why all cars should abandon them
Even though they are stylish and cool-looking, they are a bit questionable from a safety standpoint because they can be easily opened while on the move. This means that if you don’t shut them completely, a gust of wind might open them more easily because they open against the flow of wind.
Furthermore, if you happen to open a regular door in traffic and if a car hits it, they will overextend the door, but you have a higher chance of leaving the entire ordeal unscratched. On the other hand, if someone hits your doors while exiting a car equipped with suicide doors, you are more likely to get squashed by the doors.
However, the biggest issue with suicide doors is the fact that they impact structural integrity too much if there is no B pillar. Imagine a side impact to a car without a B pillar, especially while knowing that crashes such as these could easily end up tragically, even at lower speeds.
This means that manufacturers need to compensate for the lack of the B-pillar which can increase the manufacturing costs exponentially. All in all, if suicide doors are as good as some think they are, they would be more widely available.
Cars with suicide doors – Why do they use them after all
If you want to buy a new car that is offered with suicide doors, you either have to spend a fortune to buy a Rolls Royce automobile or you can check out the Lincoln Coach Edition Continental, the Mazda MX30, or the BMW i3.
The reason why these cars use suicide doors is different. Rolls Royce uses them because they make their cars exclusive which makes them unique. This is the main reason why Rolls uses them, especially because doors such as these were once associated with luxury cars, and that’s where the name coach doors originated.
The Lincoln Continental uses suicide doors to hark back to older Lincoln cars which were known to utilize this door design. The Mazda uses them because the rear doors are too small, and they don’t impact structural integrity all that much which is also the reason why the i3 uses them.
Can I equip my car with suicide doors?
Yes, you indeed can, and there are a few companies out there that are willing to do it for you for around $1000. Of course, the price varies depending on how many doors you want to change and how sophisticated you want the mechanism to be.
Either way, it is possible to convert your regular doors into suicide doors. This is a common trend in the aftermarket luxury car industry and many enthusiasts enjoy doors such as these. However, if you do this, it will murder your car’s resale value in the process.
What are the coolest car doors on the market?
Koenigsegg is a Swedish hypercar brand that uses so-called “Twisted Synchrohelix Actuation” doors. These doors are by far the coolest in the entire car industry because they open out and up. The hinge mechanism is extremely advanced and it takes quite a bit of engineering to make them safe and reliable.
However, they can be a bit problematic when it comes to high curbs, but Koenigsegg solved the issue by incorporating proximity sensors into the door frame, so the doors will warn you when you get them too close to a curb.
Are butterfly and scissor doors the same thing?
Butterfly doors are hinged at the A-pillar, and that’s what makes them unique and stand apart from all other types of doors. Scissor doors on the other hand are hinged at the front just like with regular doors, but the difference is that they open up.
Be that as it may, butterfly doors and scissor doors are not the same at all. Butterfly doors also twist at an angle while opening while scissor doors remain upright throughout the entire process.