TwinTop, with its CarTopSystems (CTS)
retractable steel hard-top.
21st September 2005.
TwinTop got its world premiere at this year's Frankfurt
International Motor Show (September 15–25), displaying
both open-top pleasure and hard-top coupe safety and
rigidity, in one lower-medium sized car.
At the touch of a button, five sections
(the three-part retractable steel roof and the two
C-pillars) go through a sequence of moves with the help of
five electric motors, eight hydraulic cylinders, 13
sensors and a 14-joint kinematics, in what the engineers
dubbed it the “Lambada” dance.
Another advantage comes from the fact
that the Astra
TwinTop's roof components are smaller than in conventional
systems and thus require less space when stowed in the
Developed in cooperation with
specialists from CarTopSystems (CTS), the Astra TwinTop's
retractable steel hard-top was designed with interior
space in mind, allowing comfortable traveling for adults
in the rear .
Opening (and closing) the top is fully
automatic, at the touch of a button located on the upper
edge of the windshield, or via remote control in the car
steel roof , 2 moving C-pillars, 5
electric motors, 8 hydraulic cylinders, 13
sensors and 14-joint kinematics.
Opening - Getting into the cabrio
mood starts with the frameless side windows moving a few
millimeters downward out of their moldings, then the trunk
lid tilts up towards the rear of the car, while the front
roof element simultaneously eases out of its fixtures.
Then, the three roof sections move backwards, pivoting on
the two main bearings located in the area of the rear
seat-backs. At the same time, the rear window moves
forward out of its fixtures on the C-pillars and the cover
behind the rear head restraints rises up, so the three
roof panels slide underneath and store themselves neatly
in the upper half of the trunk.
rear space for 2 adults, in a lower-medium
Closing - Before the panel
behind the rear head restraints and the trunk lid return
to their closed positions, two small flaps fold out for
each, nestling tightly against the body flanks to seal the
gaps. In almost 30-second, the side windows move back
upward into their original positions. A subtle acoustic
signal marks the complete closure.
The opening procedure can be initiated
only when the internal divider in the trunk is in place.
Connected to a contact sensor, the protective cover
divides the luggage compartment horizontally and defines
the usable space when the top is down, preventing the roof
panels from crowding pieces of luggage.
Another innovation comes in the power
loading assistant Easy Load: the luggage capacity
of 200 liters in the cabrio configuration can be fully
utilized. At the touch of a button, the horizontally
stacked roof panels in the trunk are raised 25
centimeters. Luggage and shopping bags can thus be easily
removed or stowed under the protective divider, keeping
the luggage easily and readily accessible, even when the
top is down.
capacity goes from 440 litres (closed top)
to 200 litres (open top).
In addition to its size and format, the
Astra TwinTop’s approximately 440-liter luggage
compartment make it suitable for everyday use. The slim
construction of the trunk lid linkage also makes a
space-saving contribution. Instead of a bulky tubular
frame construction, a complex 14-joint kinematics, which
moves the trunk lid during opening and closing, makes its
premiere in theAstra
The trunk floor has been lowered by
three centimeters compared to the Astra hatchback,
creating additional space. The practical and convenient
design of the trunk is accentuated by storage compartments
in the sides, the load-through hatch for skis and the
spare-tire well, in which a spare wheel or four-part wind
deflector and tire repair kit can be stored.
Despite the fact that the concept broke
new ground and had to meet extremely high standards in
terms of quality and functionality, the Astra TwinTop was
developed in a just 17 months, due to efficient use of
computer simulation programs as well as engineering
partner CTS’ long-term involvement in the development
and production processes.
The four-seat cabrio-coupé will roll
off the production line in Antwerp, Belgium – where the
entire roof module will be installed on site – at the
beginning of 2006.
similar topic: the new VW
Eos coupé convertible.