Moonroof vs. Sunroof: What’s the Difference?

June 6th, 2024 by
Man opening sunroof on Chevy Malibu


Though you’ve very likely heard Puyallup drivers talking about moonroofs and sunroofs as though they’re the same thing, in reality, they’re not. So, what’s the difference between a sunroof and moonroof? While both are types of panels in the roof of a vehicle that let light and or fresh air in, there are key differences:


  • Sunroofs generally are opaque panels made of metal or even canvas in some cases, that are installed in the roof of a car, truck, or SUV. They pop up, can be removed, or slide open to allow light and air into the cabin. 
  • Moonroofs, by contrast, are usually a clear or tinted glass panel that slides between the roof and the headliner, and can sometimes also be tilted open to let in fresh air. Moonroofs are sometimes but not always, larger than sunroofs. Read on to learn more, or contact us at Sunset Chevrolet anytime.



What is a Sunroof?

Classic sunroofs are opaque panels on the top of a vehicle that match the rest of the body color. They can generally be tilted open or sometimes even taken off to let in some light or fresh air in while you traverse the streets of Tacoma.

What is a Moonroof?

A moonroof is a type of sunroof, but differs because it’s made of glass and can’t be removed from your vehicle. However, moonroofs also typically slide or tilt open as well. Additionally, moonroofs usually come with an interior sliding panel that you can slide open to access the moonroof itself. The panel typically matches the vehicle’s interior to flow seamlessly with the rest of the materials.


These days, drivers will find that most modern cars feature a moonroof rather than a sunroof. While people use these terms interchangeably, as you can see, there is a difference between the moonroof vs. sunroof!  

What Are Panoramic Roof Systems? 

Now that you know what’s the difference between a sunroof and a moonroof, let’s discuss panoramic roof systems. The different types of sunroofs and moonroofs include pop-up, spoiler, inbuilt, top-mount, solar, removable, electric, and electronic. One of the most popular is the panoramic roof. These are usually offered as available options on most mainstream models, or as a standard feature for many luxury cars. Panoramic roofs come with multiple panels in the roof that are either operable or fixed. This allows front and rear passengers to open a panel for fresh air and sunlight — just the thing for enjoying Tacoma’s weather. 

Test Drive a Car with a Moonroof in Sumner! 

If you’re ready to get behind the wheel of a vehicle with a sunroof, power moonroof, or panoramic roof, contact Sunset Chevrolet to schedule a test drive today. Remember to check out our new Chevrolet specials and pre-owned vehicle specials to find the best deals currently available, and if you have any questions, give us a call at (253) 299-2561.