A Ford Eifel cabrio coach.
A modern example, a Fiat 500 (2007).

A cabrio coach or semi-convertible is a type of car that has a retractable textile roof, similar to a convertible/cabriolet. The difference is that where a convertible often has the B-pillar, C-pillar and other bodywork removed, the cabrio-coach retains all bodywork to the top of the door frames and just replaces the roof skin with a retractable fabric panel.

An advantage of a cabrio-coach is that retaining more of the car's original structure means that structural rigidity is higher (or the vehicle weight is lower) than traditional cabriolets.[1]

If a vehicle's roof includes metal panels as well as the soft-top, it may be considered to be a fixed-roof vehicle with a sunroof, instead of being a cabrio-coach.[2]


This type of roof was popular in Germany in the 1930s, and was found on cars such as the Mercedes-Benz Ponton, Saab 92, Citroën 2CV,[3][4] Fiat 500, GAZ-M20 Pobeda and the Fuldamobil. It is often called a "Webasto" since the German company of that name has been the main supplier for both factory built and aftermarket cloth car roofs since that time.[citation needed]

A variant in which the original sedan's fixed rear glass window was retained first appeared in the 1930s, and had the advantage that it could be more easily retrofitted to an existing car; it was a factory option (although listed as a separate model) for the Volkswagen Beetle up to 1963.

Some more modern cars also feature this roof style, for instance BMW Compact, Volkswagen Polo, Nissan Figaro, Isuzu Amigo, Fiat 500 (2007),[5][6] Citroën C3 Plurial and Suzuki Vitara.[7]


  1. ^ "The Semi-Convertible or Cabrio Coach: It's About Being Chic and Strong at the Same Time". www.autoevolution.com. Retrieved 5 April 2018.
  2. ^ "1963 Ragtop VW Beetle". www.vintagevwcars.com. Retrieved 5 April 2018.
  3. ^ "Citroen does the Charleston in Paris with special C3 Pluriel". www.autoblog.com. Retrieved 5 April 2018.
  4. ^ "1981 Citroen 2CV 6 Cabriolet/Convertible". www.hemmings.com. Retrieved 5 April 2018.
  5. ^ "First Drive: 2012 Fiat 500 Cabrio". www.motortrend.com. Retrieved 5 April 2018.
  6. ^ "2015 Fiat 500c Lounge Cabrio review". www.autoweek.com. Retrieved 5 April 2018.
  7. ^ "Suzuki Vitara Cabrio specs". www.autoevolution.com. Retrieved 5 April 2018.