What cars have pop-up headlights

Do you like retro cars or modern cars? If you like retro cars, then you’ll love pop-up headlights! Pop-up headlamps were popular in the 1960s and 1970s, and they’re making a comeback! These unique headlights add a touch of nostalgia to any car. And they’re not just for show – pop-up headlamps are actually more aerodynamic than traditional headlights. But what cars are such headlights for?

What was the point of pop-up headlights?

Hidden or pop-up headlamps were introduced in 1936 on the Cord 810. This was a clever way to streamline the gawky round headlamps that were popular during this time period. The idea was that when the headlights were not in use, they would be hidden away, making the car more aerodynamic.

Unfortunately, this did not work out so well in practice and the pop-up headlights were discontinued after a few years. Thankfully, they made a comeback in the 1990s and are now a popular feature on many sports cars. Thanks, Cord 810, for giving us this unique feature!

The popularity of such headlights raised after the 1950s when many sports cars began to have them as a standard feature. Porsche 911, Chevrolet Corvette, and Jaguar XK120 are some of the most popular models that featured pop-up headlights. Car enthusiasts love them for their unique look and, of course, their functionality.


Who invented pop-up headlights?

Gordon Miller Buehrig’s design for a “Baby Duesenberg” began as part of the grille, but when it debuted in 1936 as the Cord 810, it did away with traditional American automobile styling and replaced it with something more modern. The new design put headlines inside the fenders rather than outside them. In fact, it was so radical that Hupmobile and Auburn quickly followed suit.

Even though the idea of pop-up headlights had been around for a few years, it wasn’t until the 1950s that they became popular. Porsche was one of the first companies to make them standard on their 911 model. Chevrolet Corvette and Jaguar XK120 soon followed suit.

Why don’t modern cars have pop-up headlights?

Although pop-up headlights have been prohibited in much of Europe, they are not technically unlawful in the United States! Due to the difficulties of fulfilling current safety standards set in Europe, cars aren’t built with pop-up headlights anymore. Modern cars have to be equipped with daytime running lights and headlamps that must stay on at all times, so the pop-up headlights just aren’t practical anymore.

The modern safety requirements for headlights include aspects that just weren’t a concern when pop-up headlights were first introduced. For example, headlamps now have to be designed to withstand the forces of an impact in order to protect passengers in the event of a crash. Moreover, the concept of headlights that may be hidden away when not in use goes against the current trend of making vehicles as visible as possible on the road.

So, next time you see a car with pop-up headlights, you’ll know a little bit more about their history and why they’re not so common anymore.

Why are pop-up headlights illegal?


Pedestrian safety regulations led to a decrease in the production of pop-up headlights. The main reason is that it was deemed too dangerous to have a ‘sharp’ surface area. Most manufacturers stopped Pop-ups due to these reasons.

This means that manufacturers are not allowed to install them on newly designed cars. Having a car with pop-ups is legal everywhere, but they’re illegal for new cars because they’re very prone to failure. Electric pop-ups (Toyota, Mazda) can fail if the electrics get wet or take a hit.

Can you put pop-up headlights on any car?

It’s not simply any automobile, of course. But it’s a vehicle that can work in harmony with pop-up headlights. The feature that allows them to function (according to my knowledge of why they were created) is a slick design for aerodynamic reasons. Even today, there are many vehicles with this characteristic.

Do you want to give your car that extra bit of style? Are you looking for a way to make it stand out from the crowd? If so, then you may want to consider installing pop-up headlights. Many people believe that they also help improve visibility, but this is debatable.

Installation is usually fairly easy, but it’s always best to consult with a professional before undertaking any type of car modification. Once installed, you’ll be able to enjoy your new headlight setup for years to come.

First, you’ll need to purchase the headlight assembly that includes the popup mechanism. You can find these online or at most auto parts stores. Next, you’ll need to remove the old headlights from your car. This is usually a fairly easy process that just involves unscrewing a few bolts. Once the old headlights are out, you can start installing the new ones. Simply follow the instructions that came with your headlight assembly. In most cases, it’s just a matter of bolting everything into place.

And there you have it! You now know how to install pop-up headlights on your car. Give it a try and see how you like the new look. You may be surprised at how much difference they make.

What cars still have pop-up headlights?

10 Cool Cars With Pop-Up Headlights You Can Buy For Cheap

  1. Pontiac Fiero: This car was designed to be a mid-engine sports car by Pontiac. It was produced from 1984 to 1988. The Fiero was the first mass-produced mid-engine car in America. Customers could purchase a V6 or four-cylinder engine. The Fiero was also one of the first cars to have composite body panels.
  2. Ford Probe: Ford introduced this car in 1989 as a replacement for the Ford Mustang. The Probe was available as a four-cylinder or V6. It was produced until 1997 because of declining sales. This Ford model was also one of the first cars to have pop-up headlights.
  3. Volvo 480: This model gained popularity thanks to its unique design. It was produced from 1986 to 1995. The Volvo 480 was available as a two-door coupe or four-door sedan. It was the first front-wheel drive car with pop-up headlights. The overall design of the car was very angular.
  4. Lotus Elan: As a sports car, Lotus Elan was produced to speed and be lightweight. It was available as a roadster or coupe. The powerful engine and sleek design made it a popular choice among drivers. Lotus Elan was produced from 1962 to 1973.
  5. Nissan 300ZX: This Nissan car has earned a lot of customers` hearts since it was introduced in 1984. It was available as a turbocharged or naturally aspirated engine. The Nissan 300ZX was one of the first Japanese cars to have pop-up headlights. Moreover, it was the first car to have a driver`s airbag as standard equipment.
  6. Opel GT: Opel GT is one of those cars that people either love or hate. It was produced from 1968 to 1973. This two-seater vehicle was available as a coupe or convertible. Opel GT was very popular in Europe but didn`t achieve the same level of popularity in the United States. That is because most drivers in the USA found it too small.
  7. Honda Prelude: When Honda announced the Prelude in 1978, it became an instant hit. It was available as a two-door or four-door car. The Prelude was one of the first front-wheel drive cars with pop-up headlights. Moreover, it was the first Honda car to have a fuel injection system.
  8. Toyota MR2: All Toyota models are always known for their quality and reliability. Toyota MR2 is no exception. It was produced from 1984 to 2007. This car was available as a coupe or convertible. The Toyota MR2 was one of the first mid-engine cars with pop-up headlights.

Did C6 Corvettes have pop-up headlights?

The C6 Corvette “Retrovette” features C2 pop-up headlights, LS3 Small-Block V8. The sixth generation of the ‘Vette is yesterday’s news, more so if you’re aware of how capable the mid-engine interloper is on the track and in a straight line. The new Corvette is, in many ways, the car Chevrolet should have built as a successor to the C5. But who’s looking back when there’s so much to get excited about with the current ‘Vette?

Well, we are—and specifically at the C6 Corvette with pop-up headlights. That’s right, the 2006 through 2013 generation of America’s Sports Car was available with an option that harkened back to the first two generations of the car. It wasn’t just a styling exercise, either; these retrofitted C6s were fully functional and capable of tucking their headlamps away just like the original Stingrays and big-block bruisers of yesteryear.


The option was called the Heritage Package, and it was offered on both the coupe and convertible models. It included unique front and rear fascias that mimicked the look of the original C2 Corvette, as well as a set of functional pop-up headlights. The package also included special badging, side vents, and 18-inch wheels that were reminiscent of the original car.

When did they stop making cars with pop-up headlights?

The 2004 Chevy Corvette C5, was one of the last cars with pop-up headlights released to the market. Pop-up headlights were introduced in the late 1930s. Cadillac was the first automaker to offer a mass-produced car, debuting them on the 1941 Cadillac Eldorado. While many automakers adopted pop-up headlights over the years, they fell out of favor in the early 2000s. The last car available with pop-up headlights was the 2004 Chevrolet Corvette C5.

Which Ferrari has popup headlights?

The Ferrari Daytona SP3 is a limited-edition hypercar with “pop-up” headlights and an 829-hp V12. The SP3 Daytona, the third member of the Icona series, has been introduced by Ferrari, which is a limited-production model. This model is based on the Ferrari 812 Superfast. It has unique bodywork that adds classic ” pop-up” headlights, new vents, and a more aerodynamic rear end. The car is powered by an 829-hp V12 engine that can propel it from 0 to 62 mph in 2.9 seconds. The top speed is 340 km/h.

Which Mazda had pop-up headlights?

The first-generation Mazda Miata – otherwise known as the NA – was available with pop-up headlights from 1989 to 1997, but its replacement, the NB Miata, was restyled to offer a more ‘modern’ body-flush headlight design when it appeared on the scene as a 1999 model. However, for a short time in 2002, Mazda brought back the pop-up headlight Miata as a special edition model. Called the Mazda Miata Special Edition, or SE for short, this model was available in either red or black and featured body-colored side skirts, 16-inch alloy wheels, and – of course – those nostalgic pop-up headlights.


Miata is one of those cars that are just as popular today as it was when it was first introduced, and part of that appeal lies in its timeless design. The NB might have ditched the pop-ups in favor of a more contemporary look, but there’s no denying that the original Miata with its bubbly shape and those distinctive headlights is an icon of ’90s car design.

What Mazda MX-5 has pop-up headlights?

For a while, the first-gen Miata featured pop-up headlights, a fan favorite. The second-generation MX-5 came along in 1997. The new Miata was more powerful than its predecessor with considerably more horsepower, and it had grown a bit in width. However, this two-seater dynamo remained almost as light. It was available in several different trims including the Miata Sport, which featured a six-speed manual transmission, 16-inch alloy wheels, and – you guessed it – pop-up headlights.

When did Miata stop pop-up headlights?

The 1999 MX-5 Miata is all-new, sporting fresh bodywork and an updated interior. Despite its largely unchanged structural components, the roadster—code-named NB—no longer features flip-up headlights or looks as dainty. But after this car’s initial redesign, Mazda reintroduced the pop-up headlights in 2002 on a special edition Miata. This model is called the Special Edition, or SE for short. It was available in either red or black and featured body-colored side skirts, 16-inch alloy wheels, and the pop-up headlights.

Bottom line

Pop-up headlights on cars were popular in the late 80s and early 90s but have since fallen out of style. However, there are still some models that offer this retro feature, like the Mazda Miata. Whether you think they’re cool or not, pop-up headlights are definitely a unique and distinguishing feature of a car.

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