Have you ever found yourself (or a loved one) cramming stuff into the trunk? It’s not uncommon to need some extra space when packing for a trip.
That’s where rooftop cargo boxes come in. These handy “space-boosters” come in a variety of styles, options, and price tags, meaning that it can be hard to pinpoint which one best suits your needs.
If that’s where you’re at, or if you simply need some pointers as to what your options are, then you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’ll be taking a look at the seven best options for a rooftop cargo box.
Picking a Rooftop Cargo Box
The first thing to know when scouting out the ideal rooftop cargo box is whether a soft bag or solid body style will suit your needs best.
Each has its own pros and cons, which is something we’ll delve into while looking at the different options at your disposal.
1. Thule Force
Chances are, you’ve seen one of these popular cargo boxes on the freeway because of its unique, white Thule logo. As fate seems to have it, these cargo boxes are popular for a reason.
The hardy nature of the Thule Force gives you confidence that your belongings are safe from the elements while saving precious fuel economy, thanks to its tapered design and textured aero skin.
This cargo box also comes with a PowerClick mounting system, which allows for easy mounting and dismounting. A secure lock also protects your belongings from uninvited guests.
The $600 price tag is quite comparable to other similar solid body cargo boxes. With Thule, you can be sure that you’re getting a high-end product. In other words, you’ll be getting the bang for your buck.
2. Thule Hyper XL
Continuing in the same vein of solid body style cargo boxes is the Thule Hyper XL.
The Hyper XL is all about the looks if that’s what you’re after. It still comes with the same impressive features of Thule Force, but with the sleek, stylish appearance that you may be looking for.
The all-around greatness of the Hyper XL is something you’ll have to pay for, however. You’ll have to shell out an impressive $1,050 if you’re looking to cop one of these.
3. Yakima Skybox
Let’s veer away from Thule products for a moment to take a look at one of the most-praised solid cargo boxes to date: the Yakima Skybox.
Aside from its prolific name, this cargo box excels in every department. Not only will it get you some nice fuel economy, but it will also look good while doing so. It fits on most roof racks, and installation is pretty straight-forward.
The Skybox is especially geared towards the sporty customer. It’s stretched out design suits skis and snowboards quite nicely. However, it’s important to remember that size compatibility with sports gear is dependent on the size of the cargo box that you purchase.
4. SportRack XL
If you’re looking for out-and-out space when it comes to a cargo box, then this is the cargo box for you. The SportRack XL boasts an impressive 18 cubic feet of space while maintaining a modest $200 price tag.
While it may not be as easy to assemble and mount as its Thule counterparts, it gets the job done with its durable, high-density plastic. The folks over at SportRack even kept safety in mind by making sure that the SportRack XL only opens from the passenger side.
5. Roofbag Waterproof
If you’re on an extreme budget and favor a soft body style, then look no further. The Roofbag is all about economy and convenience. It’s easy to install and store and won’t set you back much more than $100, regardless of which size capacity you choose to buy.
As it turns out, however, the soft body style of the Roofbag brings some drawbacks to the table. For starters, the design is not aerodynamic, meaning that your fuel economy may take a hit. The waterproofing is also decent but not perfect, meaning that there may be leaks during rainy weather.
6. Shield Jacket
Soft body cargo boxes are viable options for those who are looking for a cargo box that suits their budget. That’s where the Shield Jacket comes in. The Shield Jacket is where durability meets economy.
The durable, double-wall vinyl construction and welded seams, mean that your precious cargo will be protected from the elements and flying debris. And the 15 cubic feet of storage will allow you to fit all your belongings with ease.
7. Rightline Gear Top Carrier
Those looking for a soft body style cargo box in a smaller package should look no further than the Rightline Gear cargo box. The smaller variation offers 9 cubic feet of space, which should suit smaller cars. There’s also an option that offers 18 cubic feet of space for those with bigger cars.
The Rightline Gear features a semi-coated PVC construction along with welded stitching, which provides complete waterproofing. The Urethane-coated zipper makes the already-impressive waterproofing even more impressive. Perhaps the most useful feature of the Rightline Gear is that no roof rack is needed to install it.
Picking the right cargo box for your needs can be challenging. Hopefully, this guide has made it easier for you. Looking for other car-related tips and tricks? Check out the automobile maintenance section of our blog!