Moonroof vs Sunroof – What’s the Difference?

Car manufacturers never vacillate in offering the best technology in their cars. Be it an automatic transmission inside the car or an exceptional mechanism under the bonnet. Moreover, there is a big race between the car companies to acquire the top position. Every car company provides extra features in the automobile to attract as many customers.

These days, most of the companies endow cars with sunroof or moonroofs. Numerous pros and cons of these roofs can be easily observed in the cars. One might wonder about the big differences between the roofs. So, why not compare sunroof vs moonroof to know what’s better?

Moonroof vs Sunroof
Most of the companies endow the cars with sunroof or moonroof (Photo:

Let’s discuss the difference between sunroof and moonroof between the two roofs.

Sunroof And Moonroof: What Is It?

Before going to dig into what is the difference between moonroof and sunroof, let’s find out what is sunroof, what is moonroof

By the late 1920s, a more convenient version of the temporary roof was often being used where a solid metal panel would slide into a slot at the top of the passenger compartment, sometimes called a de Ville extension. In 1937, in the US, the sunroof was first introduced by Nash Motors as the sunroof offers motorists the advantage of fresh air and sunlight overhead without a convertible rooftop. By 1960, Ford attempted to promote the feature, which was growing in popularity in Europe — in the U.S. market on its Thunderbird model but the effort fell flat. 

In 1961 Triumph launched the TR4 with a removable hardtop roof split into two sections.  This concept was resurrected again in 1966 when Porsche launched a version of its 911 sports car that established the term Targa, trademarked by Porsche. This bore even more of a resemblance to the traditional Sedanca form, as the car had both a permanently fixed roll-over hoop and rear seats. In 1969 Lamborghini showed the first full-roof framed transparent-panel roof, heralding the modern panoramic roof, on an Espada.

Sunroofs, by historical definition, are opaque. Today, most factory sliding sunroof options feature a glass panel and are sometimes marketed as moonroofs.

1. What is a sunroof?

According to Wikipedia, a sunroof is a movable panel that is operable to uncover a window in an automobile roof, which allows light and/or fresh air to enter the passenger compartment. Sunroofs are either manually operated or motor-driven and are available in many shapes, sizes, and styles.

what is a sunroof
Sunroofs are a metal panel that one can control to bring the light to a halt (Photo:

2. What is a moonroof?

However, the moonroof is just a panel opposite to the sunroof that allows only light to enter the cabin. A moonroof has a glass panel that is transparent and usually tinted. While the term sunroof is now used generically to describe any glass panel in the roof, the term “moonroof” was historically used to describe stationary glass panes rigidly mounted in the roof panel over the passenger compartment.

Most of the car companies provide one of these roofs to make things a little exciting. In the old days, one could easily come across vehicles with sunroofs but the idea was dropped by the modern manufacturers. That is the reason that not every car owner desires a glass panel or unwanted lighting always on top.

So now let’s talk about the sunroof vs moonroof difference here:

What Are The Differences Between Sunroof And Moonroof?

1. Sunroof vs Moonroof: Fixed or movable?

A moonroof is only a fixed glass that can’t be moved or removed. It allows the light to enter the cabin and you have to bear the temperature inside the car cabin as well. The reason behind is one just can’t stop the extreme heat of the sun from entering inside. However, the sunroof is an adjustable metal panel that one can regulate as per the need. The maintenance tips from experts edify on how to adjust the sunroof properly. Got the answer for moonroof vs sunroof? If not, let us find out more about it.

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2. Sunroof vs Moonroof:  Metal or glass?

The moonroof is usually a glass that permits the light to enter. The sunroofs are a metal panel that one can control to bring the light to a halt. The modern car manufacturers offer a glass panel with an adjustable metal pane. This is so to provide the features of both roofs in a single car.

difference between sunroof and moonroof
A moonroof is only a fixed glass that can’t be moved or removed (Photo:

3. Sunroof vs Moonroof: Safe or not?

Moonroof might be made of tinted glass but it can be broken with a single hammer shot. Sunroofs are made with top-quality solid metal to provide overall safety. That is why the moonroof is out of style. This is the biggest difference between sunroof and moonroof to choose the best of the best.

Which One Is Better?

After all the comparison of sunroof vs moonroof, which one is better? For most car buyers, a sunroof and a moonroof seem identical. If the price is important to you, you may go for a removable sunroof. Besides, motorized sunroofs and moonroofs are more expensive to install. The moonroof also opens the roof of your vehicle as opposed to just one section.  

In terms of which one is better, it ultimately comes down to personal preference. Some people may prefer the unobstructed view and open-air feeling provided by a sunroof, while others may appreciate the ability to control the amount of light and have the option to completely block it with a moonroof’s sliding shade.

Ultimately, even though there are many differences between sunroof and moonroof, they all can enhance your driving experience and make your car more valuable when you want to sell your used car. So think about it when you want to buy a car with a sunroof or moonroof.

Check out the video about sunroof vs moonroof below!

Wrapping Up

So sunroof vs moonroof, each one has its characteristics and also has many types. Meanwhile, the sunroof can be a pop-up, spoiler, inbuilt, folding, top-mount roof… moonroof includes a tinted glass panel and lets both light and air in without the second sliding visor part. 

Nowadays, most cars have a moonroof rather than a sunroof since the majority of new cars today are fitted with moonroofs, and not sunroofs as hard steel panels sunroofs have pretty much gone out of fashion. So the difference between a sunroof vs moonroof no longer matters to someone. Buying a car with a moonroof or sunroof is your choice, but remember to follow our blog for better knowledge about cars before deciding.