When camping or traveling cargo carriers that are easy to use, convenient and carry a lot are important factors. We performed customer research and have documented a list of customer issues with roof mounted cargo carriers.
They can be cumbersome to install on the roof. They are can be difficult to load gear on the roof top: requiring lifting or climbing up with a ladder to load them. They cause wind drag and can rob 15-25% of M.P.G. and that can really add up. The straps and bag material flap in the wind beating you cars finish, they act as a sail, catch the wind and can make your car unstable.
If you want to avoid all these issues take a serious look at rear mounted cargo carriers. They are like a ‘back pack’ for your car. They fit on any SUV, minivan, large van, hatch back or sedan. They eliminate wind drag, (saving fuel), are easy to load in minutes (on the ground), mount quickly with out expensive racks or rails and fold up flat. They are excellent to carry soft gear.
Here is a real world comparison to help quantify the true cost of a roof mount or back mount carriers. To purchase a roof top carrier system for a Honda Element requires: lifters & rails $299, wheel step up $50 and a roof bag $275. The complete European roof mount cargo system will cost $624, and robs your gas mileage. Hard shell cargo boxes can be even more expensive.
Using a complete rear mount pack system costs about $210, with out the loss in M.P.G. Rear mounts or back mount cargo carriers are innovative, easy to use, easy to install, are a fraction of the cost and save fuel. Before you make a purchase do your research, to understand the true costs, pros and cons.
I hope this is helpful in your decision making. If you are looking for easy to use cargo storage that, folds up flat and will not rob your mileage look at the new rear mounted solutions.