When did open-top auto racks go out of style?

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When did this style of Auto Rack stop being popular? I've seen some in the mid 90s and heard that there were a couple still around as late as 2007, but when did the majority of these babies become outdated?
I guess the auto makers and insurance companies got tired of paying for broken windows from people throwing rocks at them.


Gomez Addams
Staff member
Somewhere around 1982 or thereabouts.
I know there were still some not-fully-enclosed racks in the early 1990's, as I had to supply the unloading facility with 15 batteries that had been liberated from minivans in a couple of racks while in transit.


Well-Known Member
Partially-enclosed racks (with sides but not roofs) were introduced in the early-mid 1970s. Many older open racks had side panels added to them, as shown in the photo above.

Fully enclosed racks were introduced by the late 1970s, becoming more and more common through the 1980s. Open and partially enclosed racks would have remained common through the 1980s, slowly being replaced by fully enclosed versions. By the late 1980s they would certainly be a dying breed, but some examples of partially enclosed racks were still around in the early 1990s.

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