Bullet-Resistant Auto Glass

Bullet hole in glass

In some cases, you may want bullet-resistant glass on your vehicle—perhaps if you live in a high-crime area or require extra occupant security. There is no such thing as bullet-proof glass, but bullet-resistant glass is available for windshields, back glasses and side windows.

Bullet-Resistant Windshields

Modern windshields are made from laminated glass—two pieces of glass sealed together with a thin plastic interlayer. This interlayer helps keep the glass intact in the event of an accident or if debris hits the glass while on the highway. In order to make windshields bullet-resistant, normally manufacturers use thicker pieces of glass with a thick interlayer holding them together. While this may not be bullet-proof, it is designed to stop a bullet or at least slow it down. Bullet-resistant glasses for vehicles all have ratings which tell you how strong a weapon they can stop.

Bullet-Resistant Side Windows

In general, vehicle side windows are made from tempered glass, which, if broken, breaks into relatively safe, small pieces, rather than shards. Tempered glass is not bullet-resistant. Due to this, in a vehicle where bullet resistance is preferred (or in some high-end vehicles), polycarbonate (also known as plastic) windows are installed. These are thicker and break much less easily than a typical side window with normal auto glass thickness might. These windows are much more likely to slow down a bullet in the event one is fired toward them than standard side windows.

The Price Tag

Unfortunately, bullet resistance, for both windshields and side windows, does come with a higher price tag than standard windshields and side windows. It also makes a vehicle heavier. It is more expensive to manufacture and, if broken, more expensive to replace. For this reason, it is typically only found on vehicles that have a need for extra security. These vehicles usually are retrofitted with bullet-resistant glass as factory installation by automobile manufacturers is extremely limited and generally reserved for luxury brands like Audi, BMW and Mercedes.

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Penny Stacey

By Penny Stacey

Penny Stacey serves as the communications manager for Key’s association clients. Her job is to augment communications efforts as needed or requested by the association. She currently edits four association newsletters, writes press releases and story pitches for these clients. She also helps with research as requested.

Penny has been part of the Key team for 17 years, and has served as an editor for a number of Key publications, e-newsletters and websites. She graduated from Mary Washington College with a bachelor’s degree in both English and American Studies. She works part-time now while raising her two young boys.

11 responses to “Bullet-Resistant Auto Glass”

    • Hi Adrienne,

      Thanks for the question! Fitting bullet resistant glass to a vehicle isn’t as easy as swapping out a stock windshield. Because bullet resistant glass is much thicker and heavier than normal glass, these are considered custom jobs that usually require some modification to the vehicle. The best option would be to search for and contact a company in your area that specializes in armored vehicles.

  1. Do you make bullet resistant glass for a tall roof 2015 Ford Transit for the side 2 windows. Will the windows still go up with them.

    • Hi Leigh,

      We do not manufacture any glass ourselves, but we can point you in the direction of someone who would be able to obtain and install the glass. Many of these applications do not allow the glass to be operable because of the considerable increase in mass.

    • Armoring a vehicle is a very specialized service which we unfortunately do not offer. There are numerous vehicle armoring companies throughout the US- we suggest you contact one nearest to you in order to get a better idea of the requirements.

  2. I live in Fremont CA. My zip is 94538. I own a 2000 MB E400 that is retrofitted with bullet proof windows and steel body. The window is becoming blurry due to years of extreme sun. I would like to have the windows replaced since the car only has 60k miles. any reccomendations would be appreciated.

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