Revolutionary new roof patent could be the future of convertible practicality.
This month, Lamborghini revealed the new Countach, and last month, we saw the Aventador Ultimae, in both coupe and roadster forms. The Ultimae is the culmination of years of developments and innovations on the Aventador platform and is loaded with tech, but Lamborghini is not one to rest on its laurels. Innovation is part of the brand's DNA, and thanks to a new patent filed with the WIPO, discovered by a user of Ferrari 296 Forum, it seems that future Lamborghini drop-tops (or Spyders, as the smaller models are generally called), could have a fascinating new way of stowing a convertible's folding roof.
The patent explains a system that sees the convertible roof lift up and away from the body as normal before folding into a narrow partition behind the seats and ahead of the mid-mounted engine. From the diagrams included with the patent, it appears that this folding roof would apply to convertibles of the hardtop variety and would be partitioned into two small panels, with the front panel moving parallel to the second as it heads rearward, away from the windscreen. As a result, the folding of the roof seems to do away with raising the car's top too high, which could mean higher speeds at which the roof may be operated, but there may be other benefits too.
In most mid-engine coupes-turned-convertibles, much of the mid to the rear of the car (above the shoulder line at least) is altered, from engine covers to intake positions to buttresses for aero. This system appears to change everything by restricting all of the roof mechanisms to the front/mid of the car. In our minds, this may result in better weight balance, a cleaner look for the car, and no need to re-engineer the entire rear decklid to accommodate the removable roof. At this point, it's impossible to speculate much further until we see the system at work, but we certainly hope that this is another innovation that sees production. If not, we expect to see it on at least one concept sometime in the future.