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Old 02-25-2013, 08:12 AM   #1
GeorgeB64
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Default Roadster vs Convertible?

Hi all. I see a number of C2 cars referred to as roadsters. Being curious I started checking different sites and publications.

Everything i find lists a coupe or a convertible but not a roadster line. Are there really roadsters with different spec or trim items that make it not a convertible?

Is roadster just a term some guys prefer to use instead of convertible? Was it the term used for a car that didnt have a hardtop (but the car was still a convertible)?

Thanks,
Curious George
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Old 02-25-2013, 08:30 AM   #2
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As someone new to this forum from end of December the first thing I noticed was all the lingo.

It took a little time but by reading many posts I caught on.

Like SWC, took a few and then it hit me Split Window Coupe

Roadster is just a convertible, pretty sure
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Old 02-25-2013, 08:35 AM   #3
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I could be wrong, but I thought a true "roadster" did not have roll up side windows.

So while 1956 and newer Vette's are "convertibles" I prefer the sound of roadster.
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Old 02-25-2013, 08:41 AM   #4
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Old 02-25-2013, 08:47 AM   #5
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While the term is used to describe a convertible, a roadster, by definition doesn't have a top.

Last edited by 62bubbletop; 02-25-2013 at 08:51 AM.
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Old 02-25-2013, 08:58 AM   #6
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What say we have some fun and throw "drophead coupe" into the descriptive mix.
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Old 02-25-2013, 09:29 AM   #7
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I like roadster, whether my car is a real roadster or not.
I'm surprised you did not include the term vert, which is a term most of us grey hairs really hate.
That is a kid's term, and should be reserved for rice burners and BMWs and VWs only.

happy midyear roadster owner.
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Old 02-25-2013, 09:43 AM   #8
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If you spend enough time on this forum, you will read many discussion/arguments about terms used about our cars. Wait till you get into C1/C2 vs Solid axles/midyears. Some people get all worked up about it. I personally don't care what you call your car, I have a 65 Convertible.

Last edited by raypilot65; 02-25-2013 at 04:39 PM. Reason: Spelling error
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Old 02-25-2013, 09:45 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 62bubbletop View Post
While the term is used to describe a convertible, a roadster, by definition doesn't have a top.
This is not quite accurate. A roadster has a top but does not have roll up windows. Often the windshield frame is chrome or stainless and not sheet metal like the rest of the body. A convertible has a top of course but has roll up windows. Often the windshield frame is a continuation of the cowl. My 54 is a roadster, my 62 is a convertible. Some years there were both, for example a 36 Ford. They made a roadster (last year) as well as a convertible. That being said, many of us old guys incorrectly refer to Corvette convertibles as roadsters, even though they are not in fact true roadsters. I won't even discuss "verts".
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Old 02-25-2013, 10:06 AM   #10
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Who cares Tomato-Tomata. I change what I call it daily. Roadster,convertible,Drop head etc...
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Old 02-25-2013, 10:37 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaineDoc View Post
This is not quite accurate. A roadster has a top but does not have roll up windows. Often the windshield frame is chrome or stainless and not sheet metal like the rest of the body. A convertible has a top of course but has roll up windows. Often the windshield frame is a continuation of the cowl. My 54 is a roadster, my 62 is a convertible. Some years there were both, for example a 36 Ford. They made a roadster (last year) as well as a convertible. That being said, many of us old guys incorrectly refer to Corvette convertibles as roadsters, even though they are not in fact true roadsters. I won't even discuss "verts".
Not sure if technically correct but I consider my Cobra replica a roadster due to it's lack of side glass and lack of permanently attached top (side curtains and an erector set and fabric top). At least after 55, I would consider the Corvette to be a convertible. My 2 cents which may be wrong.
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Old 02-25-2013, 11:06 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BADBIRDCAGE View Post
What say we have some fun and throw "drophead coupe" into the descriptive mix.
I thought the term was drop top.

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Old 02-25-2013, 11:09 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaineDoc View Post
This is not quite accurate. A roadster has a top but does not have roll up windows. Often the windshield frame is chrome or stainless and not sheet metal like the rest of the body. A convertible has a top of course but has roll up windows. Often the windshield frame is a continuation of the cowl. My 54 is a roadster, my 62 is a convertible. Some years there were both, for example a 36 Ford. They made a roadster (last year) as well as a convertible. That being said, many of us old guys incorrectly refer to Corvette convertibles as roadsters, even though they are not in fact true roadsters. I won't even discuss "verts".
Whatever trips your trigger, call it what u will, but again by difinition (Webster) a roadster is "open" & a convertible is just that "having a folding top". The OP asked what the differance was. .............Right on with the verts thing & the Tomato/Toematoe thing. Another thing that cracks me up is the worn out term 63' SWC. GM's term on that model was "Sport Coupe" or as the seasoned Vette guy's like to say '63 coupe. Who doesn't know that if u have a '63 cpe, that it's a split window, Really !...... Unless of course the bar was removed to make it look like the '64's when they debuted or because of the saftey issue that center bar created................Regards, enjoy your Vette should it be a roadster, convertible, (ragtop, droptop), hardtop or a coupe...................Rock on & save the wave.

Last edited by 62bubbletop; 02-25-2013 at 11:29 AM.
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Old 02-25-2013, 11:15 AM   #14
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1955 Corvette was the last Corvette being a true Roadster, because you had to install the side windows . 56 up Corvettes because the windows were made into the doors then became a Convertible .
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Old 02-25-2013, 11:20 AM   #15
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Heck........as long as we're dropping names, how about 'rag top'.

Using the standard term convertible seems to be a spelling challenge for many as I've seen 'convertable' way too many times. Now before you brow beat me, I know you've seen it as well.
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Old 02-25-2013, 11:27 AM   #16
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The definition of a roadster is, An automobile with an open body that seats two and has a folding fabric top and often a luggage compartment or rumble seat in the rear.

But the correct definition on here is just "vert".
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Old 02-25-2013, 11:40 AM   #17
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In 1916, the Society of Automobile Engineers defined a roadster as: "an open car seating two or three. It may have additional seats on running boards or in rear deck."[2] Additional seating in the rear deck was known as a rumble seat or a dickey seat. A roadster is still defined as an open car with two seats.
Roadster bodies were offered on automobiles of all sizes and classes, from mass market cars like the Ford Model T and the Austin 7 to extremely expensive cars like the Cadillac V-16, the Duesenberg Model J, and even the Bugatti Royale. They are popular with collectors, often valued over other open styles.

Traditionally, roadsters did not have windows; in some instances, they did not have doors. A few manufacturers and fabricators still offer roadsters that meet the strict description. These include Morgan, with the windowless Roadster, Caterham, with the doorless Seven, and Ariel, with the bodyless Atom. Despite these examples, the traditional roadster has been superseded by two-seat convertibles with side windows that retract into the doors. These convertibles, including the Alfa Romeo Spider, MGB, and Triumph TR4, have been accepted as roadsters. The term "roadster" now covers all two-seat convertibles, including those with power tops or retractable hardtops.
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Old 02-25-2013, 11:50 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BADBIRDCAGE View Post
What say we have some fun and throw "drophead coupe" into the descriptive mix.
I once owned a '63 Morris Minor "Drophead Coupe".

The top folded down. The window frames were affixed to the doors and quarters and remained in place.

Don't think that applies to a Corvette.

IMHO people who use the term "Vert" when referring to a Corvette should be hanged, drawn, quartered, and blood eagled.....for a start.
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Old 02-25-2013, 11:53 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KC John View Post
In 1916, the Society of Automobile Engineers defined a roadster as: "an open car seating two or three. It may have additional seats on running boards or in rear deck."[2] Additional seating in the rear deck was known as a rumble seat or a dickey seat. A roadster is still defined as an open car with two seats.
Roadster bodies were offered on automobiles of all sizes and classes, from mass market cars like the Ford Model T and the Austin 7 to extremely expensive cars like the Cadillac V-16, the Duesenberg Model J, and even the Bugatti Royale. They are popular with collectors, often valued over other open styles.

Traditionally, roadsters did not have windows; in some instances, they did not have doors. A few manufacturers and fabricators still offer roadsters that meet the strict description. These include Morgan, with the windowless Roadster, Caterham, with the doorless Seven, and Ariel, with the bodyless Atom. Despite these examples, the traditional roadster has been superseded by two-seat convertibles with side windows that retract into the doors. These convertibles, including the Alfa Romeo Spider, MGB, and Triumph TR4, have been accepted as roadsters. The term "roadster" now covers all two-seat convertibles, including those with power tops or retractable hardtops.
will there be a test after?
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Old 02-25-2013, 12:45 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KC John View Post
In 1916, the Society of Automobile Engineers defined a roadster as: "an open car seating two or three. It may have additional seats on running boards or in rear deck."
Which model had seats on the running boards?? I've got to see that! Perhaps that was an option used on the verts

Russ
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