Encyclopedia Hoonatica: Bubble Canopies

Any category that includes both the Caparo T1 and the Peel Trident is awesome in my book.

Yes, Encyclopedia Hoonatica is still with us, it’s just been laying low. The Rumor Mill says that it’s being deliberately kept down by The Man (who wants to repress the propagation of Hoonistic lore in the name of decency and social order fiendish, power-mad tyranny). So, to avoid mass laptop bonfires in the streets, we’ll keep the torch lit by sneaking it in here every once in a while on the hush-hush, on the down-low, on the sly.
It’s frighteningly similar to the way The Man has tried to keep all those futuristic bubble-top concept cars out of our driveways and garages*. For decades, manufacturers hinted that they were just around the corner, but like the oft-rumored 200 MPG carburetor, they never quite materialized en masse on the showroom floor. Yet, a bold few have dared to stare down The Man through a huge plexiglass pimple. We celebrate these defenders of vehicular wierdness! In their honor, your Encyclo-Challenge is to name all the bubble-top cars you can.
Chuck Miller's bubblicious "Crater Raider I"

To be “clear” (pun intended), these are not bubble-shaped roofs, but totally transparent roofs (aka “rooves” to those of you in the Northeast). Unlike most E-H entries, we’re not just interested in production cars here. The two road cars in the lead image are probably the lowest hanging fruit, and I can think of only two other mass-produced examples, which would make for a pretty boring comment stream. So — racers, concept cars, one-off customs — bring ’em all to our giant orgy of lexan and compound curves!
*The fact that they were hellishly hot and uncomfortable in the sun had absolutely nothing to do with it.
Read the comments first. Don’t post duplicates. Add width=”500″ to the HTML tag for large photos.
Image sources:

  • Peel Trident: minidoodle.com
  • Caprio T1: Photo taken by me at SEMA 2006
  • Crater Raider I: Hot Rod Show World Magazine, 1971 edition


  1. Sweet sassy molassey! I have never seen that thing before. What drugs was that designer on that made him/her think, "You know, this vehicle is a really good idea."

  2. The Probe 16
    <DIV style="OVERFLOW: auto">
    <DIV style="OVERFLOW: auto"><img src="http://cache.gawkerassets.com/assets/images/12/2010/10/probe16.jpg"&gt;
    The silhouette
    &lt;DIV style="OVERFLOW: auto"&gt;
    <DIV style="OVERFLOW: auto"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_jv1uTpgUfVw/TF6p-ctSQ7I/AAAAAAAAAEM/qs8TqvlnzFM/s1600/Silo_Real.jpg&quot; width=600>
    Toyota Sera
    <DIV style="OVERFLOW: auto"><img src="http://images.carpictures.cc/photo/m/Toyota_Sera_Toyota_00025380.jpg'&gt;

    1. I swear GM had like 3 dozen late-80s, early 90s concepts that looked like that.
      To what end? As best I can tell, the 4th gen F-bodies and a few Saturns. Oh! and the Geo Storm.

  3. Marcos Mantis XP
    <img src="http://www.thecoolist.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/Marcos-Mantis-XP-2.jpg&quot; width=500>
    Ferrari 575 Superamerica
    <img src="http://www.productioncars.com/send_file.php/ferrari_575_superamerica_top_red_2006.jpg&quot; width=500>
    Yamaha OX99-11
    <img src="http://www.chrisabraham.com/Yamaha-OX99-11-Concept.jpg&quot; width=500>
    ItalDesign Alfasud Caimano
    <img src="http://www.carroantigo.com/imagens/carros_conceito/1971_italdesign_alfasud_caimano.jpg&quot; width=500>
    ItalDesign/Maserati Boomerang
    <img src="http://www.carroantigo.com/imagens/carros_conceito/1972_italdesign_maserati_boomerang.jpg"&gt;
    Pininfarina/Honda HP-X
    <img src="http://www.carroantigo.com/imagens/carros_conceito/1984_pininfarina_honda_hp_x.jpg&quot; width=500>
    Chevrolet XP-755 (Mako Shark 2)
    <img src="http://www.carroantigo.com/imagens/carros_conceito/1962_chevrolet_xp755_mako_shark_2.jpg&quot; width=500>
    Buick Centurion
    <img src="http://www.carroantigo.com/imagens/carros_conceito/1956_buick_centurion_2.jpg&quot; width=500>
    Perennial vaporware, the Acabion GTBO
    <img src="http://static.howstuffworks.com/gif/acabion-gtbo-4.jpg&quot; width=500>
    Opel Astra GTC Panoramic roof
    <img src="http://cdn2.worldcarfans.co/2004/9/medium/2040908.004.1M.jpg&quot; width=500>
    Foremost Snowcoach
    <img src="http://www.busdrawings.com/coach/brewster/snowcoach/1984/534r.jpg&quot; width=500>
    various popemobiles:
    Mercedes-Benz 230G
    <img src="http://cache.gawker.com/assets/images/jalopnik/2008/09/230G-Popemobile.jpg&quot; width=500>
    Peugeot 504:
    <img src="http://cache.gawker.com/assets/images/jalopnik/2008/09/Peugeot-504-Popemobile.jpg&quot; width=500>
    Land Rover Range Rover
    <img src="http://cache.gawker.com/assets/images/jalopnik/2008/09/Range-Rover-Popemobile.jpg&quot; width=500>
    Leyland of some sort:
    <img src="http://cache.gawker.com/assets/images/jalopnik/2008/09/Giant-Pope-Mobile.jpg&quot; width=500>

  4. The rare 70's Buick Skyhawk with the C06 plexiglass roof option:
    <img src="http://austininfo.com/images/430_1977_Buick_Skyhawk.jpg&quot; width="500/">
    According to this thread at the H-body forums, only 5-6 are still on the road. More info here, says some 2,700 were built.
    When I had my Monza in college, I wanted to find one of those roof panels and turn mine into a targa with removable glass roof panel. Would have done wonders for the frame stiffness, right?

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