Cool Suicide Door Conversions

"If you are looking for a new opening then this could be it."

Suicide doors are ever popular on show cars. If you are new to car modification then read on to find out what suicide doors are.

If you are considering suicide doors we will explain the advantages and disadvantages?

Traditionally car doors haveĀ the hinges at the front and the door opens from the rear.

Although this is now the established norm mass produced cars in the early days rear hinged doors were common.

Converting a standard door to a suicide door requires moving the hinge so that the door opens to the front.

So why are they called suicide doors? The name 'suicide doors' is based on the fact you are exposed to oncoming traffic when exiting the car instead of having the door to shield you. In real life a parked car is more likely to be hit by a car coming from behind.

The Mazda RX8, the BMW i3, the Honda Element and Toyota FJ Cruiser are the only mainstream cars in recent times to have suicide doors. In the RX8 the rear door is really half a door - the front doors need to be opened before rear passengers can get out. It's a clever way make a wider opening for rear passengers.

Suicide doors are a popular modification for show cars. It's a relatively simple job for a competent person. Usually the area where the hinges are mounted will need to be reinforced or the doors will sag over time.

Suicide door options for 2 and 4 door cars.

For 2 door cars the only option is to relocate the hinges to the rear so the doors open at the front. If you have a 4 door car then you have a couple of options.

  • Option 1 for a 4 door car is to get just the rear doors reversed into suicide doors. This gives easier access for rear passengers.
  • Option 2 for a 4 door car is to have all 4 doors converted into suicide doors. This configuration looks more impressive but it's usually less practical.

The wiring for indicator repeaters and electric door mirrors will need to be rerouted. Check all the electrical joins and wiring around the hinges to ensure they will not rub or be overly flexed as the door opens and closes.

Downsides to suicide door conversions.

Suicide doors generally need to be opened wider for passengers to get in and out.

A standard door only needs to be partially opened because the gap at the front only needs to be wide enough to slide your legs in. With a suicide door more clearance is required.

Another issue is the need to lean forwards quite a distance to close the door. Fitting strategically placed handles or straps can solve this problem.

You can have fun watching passengers hunt for the door handles, especially if the handles have been shaved or removed. Beware of cheap suicide door conversions.

Doors that are poorly fitted can soon becomeĀ  difficult to open and close. The weight of the door can cause the hinges to sag if the hinges have been mounted without the proper reinforcement.

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One Response to “Suicide doors”

  1. Arse4991 says:

    Suicide doors? New? Fiat 600 would like to have a word with you.

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