Car body types: Did you know them all?

Car body
Veröffentlicht am Übersetzt mit Hilfe von KI aus unserem Originalartikel (Quelle:

Nowadays, a large number of different cars are produced in different body versions.

To clarify the types of bodywork on different cars, we decided to write an overview to look at the most common types of car bodywork.


1. Hatchback

A hatchback is a type of car body, usually three-door or five-door, two-compartment with a folding and flowing rear part. The hatchback category includes cars with a closed body and a sloping rear part.

This type of body is most often used in vehicles of lower classes. The hatchback body has, for example, cars such as Škoda Fabia, Fiat Grande Punto, Peugeot 206, Audi A3, VW Golf, Seat Ibiza, BMW series 1, Ford Fiesta, Renault Clio, Citroen C3, and many others.

2. Sedan

A sedan is a type of car with a closed and at least a four-seater body, two rows of full-size seats, a fixed roof, and a stepped rear section. A sedan can have two or four side doors, and its rear opens without a rear window.

But back in the day, a sedan with two side doors was called a Tudor. Cars such as Škoda Superb, Peugeot 406, Audi A4, and BMW series 3 have a sedan body.

3. Coupe

A coupe is a mostly sporty car with a closed, two-door body. The coupé has one or two rows of seats, while in the case of two rows, the rear seats are smaller and provide less comfort when traveling.

For example, cars like Fiat Coupe, Peugeot 407 Coupe, Audi TT, Alfa Romeo Brera, Mazda RX8, and others have coupe bodies.

4. Station wagon

A station wagon is a type of passenger car body with an extended rearward roof over the entire car and a luggage compartment accessed through an almost vertical fifth door (the luggage compartment). With station wagons, it is always possible to reorganize the luggage compartment by folding the rear seats. The Kombi body resembles an extended hatchback.

The name kombi/combi is derived from the purpose of the vehicle, which is designed to transport people and cargo. However, car companies use different designations for station wagons. Here are a few examples:

  • Alfa Romeo: Sportwagon
  • Audi: Avant
  • BMW: Touring
  • Citroen: Break/Tourer
  • Dacia: MCV
  • Fiat: MultiWagon
  • Ford: Turnier
  • Hyundai: CW • • • Mazda: Wagon
  • Mitsubishi: Station Wagon
  • Nissan: Wagon
  • Opel: Caravan
  • Peugeot: Break/SW
  • Renault: Grandtour
  • Škoda: Combi
  • Volkswagen: Variant

5. Liftback

A liftback is a type of car body that is three-door, or five-door closed, and two-compartment. Compared to the hatchback, the rear of the vehicle slopes at a gentler angle and is longer. This type of vehicle does not belong to the sedan category, because the rear window also opens.

For example, Fiat Brava, Renault Laguna, Ford Mondeo, Škoda Octavia, and others have a Liftback body.

6. Limousine

A limousine is a four- to six-door car with a three-compartment body, a fixed roof, and space for six to nine people. The passenger compartment is usually separated from the driver's compartment by a bulkhead.

7. Convertible

A cabriolet is an open-passenger car with a folding roof. The roof can be canvas or solid made of steel or other materials. If it is a convertible with a hard top, the designation CC is sometimes used, which stands for coupé cabriolet.

In most cases, the roof is removed mechanically into the luggage compartment. The cabriolet body shapes are based on the coupé body, so cabriolets usually only have two doors.

The disadvantage of a convertible compared to a coupe is the greater weight of the car and smaller luggage space. A cabriolet-type vehicle is usually a two-seater with two emergency seats. For example, cars such as Peugeot CC, Opel Tigra Twintop, Volkswagen Eos, and the like have a cabriolet body.

8. Roadster

A roadster, also known as a spider, is a car equipped with two seats. It is mostly without a roof or fitted with a folding canvas roof without side and rear windows. The Roadster body is used, for example, by cars such as Audi TT Roadster, Alfa Romeo Spider, BMW Z4 Roadster, and others.

9. MPV - Multipurpose vehicle

A multi-purpose vehicle, abbreviated MPV, is similar to a van (van). However, this vehicle is intended for transporting people. An MPV vehicle is taller than a sedan, hatchback, or station wagon and is designed to provide maximum space and comfort for all occupants.

MPV cars are, for example, Renault Scenic, Fiat 500L Living, VW Sharan, Citroen Xsara Picasso, Opel Meriva, Opel Zafira, Fiat Multipla, Ford C-MAX, Ford S-MAX, and others.

10. Pick-Up

Pick-Up is a type of commercial car body. The cargo space is initially uncovered, but can also be covered. The Pick-Up is equipped with harder shock absorbers than ordinary cars, precisely because of the transport of heavy loads.

These cars are robust and are often equipped with two-wheel drive. Pick-Ups are often derived from passenger cars and are mainly used to transport goods or as service and emergency vehicles.

For example, cars like Ford Ranger, Honda Ridgeline, Toyota Tacoma, Ford Raptor, Fiat Fullback, and others have a Pick-Up body.

11. SUV

An SUV is a car that can overcome more demanding conditions that a normal car cannot handle. An SUV combines a passenger car and an all-terrain vehicle. It has an increased ground clearance and can handle driving on light terrain.

Most of the vehicles are SUVs equipped with 4x4 all-wheel drive. However, SUV vehicles are not equipped for extreme terrain. SUV vehicles are, for example, Audi Q7, Škoda Kodiaq, Alfa Romeo Stelvio, BMW X5, Mercedes ML, and others.

12. Crossover

A crossover combines an SUV's car body and driving elements (higher ground clearance or all-wheel drive) with elements of an MPV (interior, driving style).

Crossovers are usually intended for urban environments or just for easier terrain. Crossovers are Kia Sportage, Nissan Qashqai, BMX X3, Audi Q3, and others.

13. LAV - Leisure activity vehicle

A LAV is a small van with two or three rows of seats, a large luggage compartment, and a large fifth door. Typical representatives of the LAV body are, for example, Škoda Roomster, Citroen Berlingo, Peugeot Partner, and others.

14. Targa

Targa is a body type with a removable roof section. The Targa is sometimes equipped with a removable hardtop consisting of two parts. For example, cars like Honda CR-X, Suzuki X-90, and others have a Targa bodies.

15. Tudor

Tudor is an older designation for a two-door, closed, at least four-seater hardtop body type. The name Tudor is no longer used, as the term two-door sedan has replaced it.

16. Notchback

Notchback is a type of car body. This body is inaccurately referred to as a step-back sedan. The main feature of the notchback is the ratio of the size of the rear part in relation to the vehicle. With this type of body, there is a right or sharp V or Z-shaped angle between the rear window and the rear of the body.

The disadvantage of the notchback body is worse aerodynamics. That is why today's sedans have a window facing the same direction as the rear of the body. A typical representative of the notchback is, for example, Toyota Will.

17. Minibus

A minibus is a road vehicle classified as a small bus in terms of the number of seats. The minibus can take around 10 to 20 people. Manufacturers of vans and passenger cars more often produce this type of vehicle because minibusses often have the same construction as vans.

A minibus is, for example, a Mercedes Benz Sprinter or an Iveco Daily and others.

18. Delivery car

A delivery car, colloquially called a van, is a type of car intended for transporting goods. Most often, it has a box shape, four wheels, greater height, and length, but also the distance from the floor to the ground than ordinary passenger cars. There are usually two or three places for the crew in the cabin. Vans are, for example, Citroen Jumper, Fiat Ducato, Peugeot Boxer, Renault Master, and others.

So now you know the most used body types.