Dec
29
1978 Chrysler LeBaron, Ads Featuring T-Tops

The 1978 Chrysler LeBaron’s T-top roof was a $562 option.

The T-top was patented back in 1951 by famed designer Gordon Buehrig, but wouldn’t see duty on a regular-production car until it appeared as standard equipment on the 1968 Chevrolet Corvette. A pretty long stretch between conception and implementation, we’d argue.

1948 Tasco

By most accounts, the first T-top roof appeared on the 1948 Tasco (above), a prototype sports car designed by Gordon Buehrig. Unfortunately, it would be decades before the novel roof design would see regular production.

Mostly displaced by the sunroof (or in the case of the Corvette by a single-piece Targa roof), the T-top enjoyed a period of popularity that seemed to peak sometime around the late Seventies.

T-Top Madness (Part 2)

T-tops were generally a pricey option. The ’78 Chrysler LeBaron’s T-bar roof was priced at $642 as a standalone option–fully 10 percent of the car’s base price, and about the same cost as adding air conditioning. Despite the steep tariff, many sun seekers opted for the open-air experience in lieu of the sterility of an artificially chilled cabin.

Presented here are 5 classic car ads that prominently feature T-top roofs. If you’ve owned a T-top-equipped car, tell us about it. Be sure to mention if you experienced any of the water leaks so often associated with T-tops.

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Ads Featuring T-Tops

1976 Buick Century Pace Car

1976 Buick Century Indy Pace Car Replica

10 Worst Gas Guzzlers of 1994*

 

1978 Chrysler LeBaron

1978 Chrysler LeBaron Medallion

Learning to Drive Stick: A Sordid Tale of Intrigue, Deception, and Personal Triumph

 

1980 Datsun 280ZX

1980 Datsun 280ZX  10th Anniversary Edition

Recent-History Madness! A Gallery of Car Ads from 2002

 

1980 Ford Mustang

1980 Ford Mustang GT

Photo Feature: 1961 Plymouth Belvedere

 

1985 Chrysler Laser

1985 Chrysler Laser XT (top) and base model

More Classic Car Ads

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Ads Featuring T-Tops

Photo Feature: 1961 Plymouth Belvedere