e30 convertible question (a silly one!)

First let me defend myself by saying the Scottish weather isn't exactly designed for cars with no roof! So I've not seen many convertibles.
The rear side panels have what look like interior door handles above the
seat cushion. What do they do? Part of the roof mechanism? Only noticed them recently in pics.
Perhaps someone from a sunnier climate can elighten me :-)
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Isn't this for manual roof's, not electric, where it releases the roof so that you can manually fold it away?
You will only find the handle on the N/S/R if I remember correctly. Maybe the other side for non UK vehicles.

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That would explains why I've not seen it before, most of them have electric.
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You don't need somebody with better weather to answer this, you need somebody with an E30 convertible.
Going out on a limb here, do you suppose those handles are needed on a manually operated top?
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The little handle(s) -- I only recall one -- released the rear deck to allow the raising/lowering of the manual roof. I sold my E30 manual convertible 2 years ago, this is from memory. BTW, I will be putting the hardtop for the (now sold) E30 onto ebay in the near future. Local pickup only, tho' will cooperate with any packing/shipping the buyer arranges. Roadtrip anyone? Al

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Al Ritchie wrote:

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Thomas Wright wrote:

Well, I sold mine about 8 years ago, and my memory is probably worse than yours (or anyone's) but you are quite correct. There is only one rear handle. It is the latch release for the rear deck hatch where the top is stored when it is on the down position. The deck hatch has gas struts that are supposed to hold it up.
Once the cover is opened, you'd flip the entire top up out of the well, then close the cover and latch it by hand before finishing fitting the top.
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Fred W wrote:

I can confirm this as I have access to an '87 E30 325iC. Just one latch and it pops open the deck hatch, you then have to unhook a little notch at the edge of the deck hatch to release it fully.
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