The Ultimate Guide of Cargo Box for SUV (2021)

When you are packing for a long trip or just a trip to the airport, or you are willing to take your car over the country with you, at first, you will want to make sure that you have everything you need for a delightful trip.

But, sometimes you may face some problems, including a shortage of storage space in your car. For example, you might not have enough space in your SUV for all the luggage you want to take with you.

You can most probably face this problem when you are going on a trip with the members of your family or friends. Moreover, you will not be able to put the luggage in the backseat because there are people in it. Besides, most SUVs do not have enough space to accommodate some extra suitcases and travel bags.

Sometimes, you might need to carry some luggage that is an unfamiliar size, such as a pair of skis or snowboards. No matter what you are trying to take with you, and no matter where you are trying to go, not having enough space to keep all your items is the worst problem you will ever face.

After facing this kind of problem, you might start to think about increasing the amount of storage space in your car because, after all, you cannot physically increase the amount of storage space in your trunk. You will be very happy to know that there is a system that you can increase the amount of storage space of your SUV. For instance, you can look for SUV roof cargo boxes and find out which one suits your needs best.

Installing a roof cargo box on top of your SUV can easily increase the volume of storage space that you might need to use, including keeping rigidly shaped objects, such as skis and snowboards. So by installing a roof cargo box on your SUV, no matter where you are planning to go, you will surely have enough storage space in your SUV for everyone to carry the luggage they need.

What Types of Roof Boxes Are There?

While you are looking for SUV roof cargo boxes, you should get to know about the different types of roof cargo boxes first. There are mainly two types of roof boxes available on the market that you will need to keep in mind.

One type of roof cargo box comes with a hard outer shell, and it can be referred to as a hard roof box. The other type of roof cargo box is usually made out of a flexible material, and that type of roof cargo carrier can be referred to as a soft roof box. Both of these roof boxes come with their own pros and cons over each other. So you might need to do thorough research to determine which one is the best in satisfying your needs.

With that being said, there is no definite answer of whether a soft roof box is going to be more dependable than a hard one, as it depends fully on your position and what your needs are.

What Are Hard Roof Boxes?

When you are looking for SUV roof cargo boxes, you will surely see many hard roof boxes available for SUVs. Hard roof boxes are actually characterized by their hard outer shell, which almost always provides you with external durability and security.

Hard roof boxes can be the perfect choice for you if you are looking for something to ensure basic safety and security over price. With a hard roof box installed on top of your SUV, you can drive without worrying about your belongings being damaged by the storm of rocks, pebbles, and branches that can be kicked up by passing cars. All your items will remain fully safe inside the box.

The worst thing that could happen is that your roof box might get some slight scratch, and unfortunately, nobody likes a scratched appearance. It just works to confirm how durable hard roof boxes are.

You will be able to fit cargo boxes that come with between 16 and 18 cubic feet of storage space on an SUV. But it actually depends on the amount of space the roof of your SUV has.

Cargo Boxes for SUV

Where Do Hard Roof Boxes Fall Short?

Unfortunately, there are some shortcomings of these roof cargo boxes. Firstly, they are significantly more costly than their soft shell equivalents. This is, of course, to be assumed, including the level of safety that is provided by that hard shelter, though.

Usually, a good-quality solid roof box will cost you around mid-hundreds and even in the low-thousands range of pricing, but it actually depends on the size of the roof box, and the price also varies from brand to brand.

This indicates that buying a hard roof box will be a great investment, and you should really consider it if you think that you will get your money’s value out of it. In accession to the introductory price, most maximum hard roof boxes require a roof rack to get installed on top of your SUV.

While many SUVs already come with factory roof racks, many do not. So if your SUV doesn’t have any roof racks, you will need to combine this into the expense of the roof box itself.

Furthermore, you will also need to estimate the weight of the roof box. Most hard roof boxes are moderately overweight. They usually weigh from 30 to 60 lbs. You will need to combine this to the maximum weight capacity (usually nearby 100 lbs or just a little more). Moreover, you will also have to make sure whether or not your SUV can handle that weight.

Thule Force XT Rooftop Cargo Box, XX-Large, Black
  • An oversized, versatile roof-mounted cargo box for everyday use
  • Provides 22 cubic feet of additional packing space
  • Designed to fit a wide range a vehciles with maximum space efficiency
  • Quick-mount system "clicks" when roof box is secure and properly mounted
  • Dual-side opening for easy access to all areas of the box, from either side of the vehicle

Hardshell roof cargo boxes are magnificent and can hold your belongings more protected than ever before, but the cost is something that cannot be ignored.

What Are Soft Roof Boxes?

Cargo Box for SUV

In contrast to the hard roof boxes, the soft SUV roof cargo boxes are appreciated for their comparatively flexible fabric body. These types of cargo boxes do not come with a hard, fixed shape as the other types do, though they are sometimes categorized as roof cargo carrier bags. 

There are numerous advantages of buying a soft roof cargo carrier over the hardshell roof boxes. For example, soft roof cargo boxes are usually available at a fraction of the price of the hardshell ones. You will be able to find one for the 50 to 60 dollar range, and very unusually, the prices cross the hundred dollar mark. 

Now some people might think that soft roof boxes do not provide enough space, but this is not really true in this case. in place of 16 to 18 cubic feet of cargo space, soft SUV roof cargo boxes will normally provide you with around 15 cubic feet of storage space, which is more than enough for many suitcases and carry-on bags.

Moreover, in terms of installing a soft roof cargo bag on top of your car will not require you to spend money on a roof rack because almost all soft roof boxes can be installed regardless of roof racks. Most soft roof boxes own methods to accommodate most SUV roofs. This means that you won’t have to spend any extra money to have the roof cargo box in place, except you desire to increase the carrier’s security. 

These soft roof boxes are all created to be water and weatherproof. So no matter what weather condition you are driving through, you will not have to worry about your stuff getting wet or damaged.

After all, soft roof cargo boxes are very lighter than their hardshell equivalents. Most of the softer ones will weigh in under ten lbs. They are usually more like six or seven lbs. but it actually depends on the size of the roof cargo box.

However, an excellent soft roof box to consider would be this Keeper model of roof bag.

Keeper 07203-1 Waterproof Roof Top Cargo Bag (15 Cubic Feet)
  • Waterproof Rooftop Cargo Bag with 15 cubic feet of space; fits all roof racks
  • Increase vehicle cargo space on standard vehicles and smaller SUVs; designed to fit all roof racks with attachment capabilities on all four sides
  • Waterproof design protects cargo against road grit, sun, wind and rain
  • Soft sides flex to fit odd-shaped loads, heavy duty construction
  • Folds compact for easy storage; overall size is 44” x 34” x 17''

Where Do Soft Roof Boxes Fall Short?

Unfortunately, almost all SUV roof cargo boxes do have some shortcomings, and the soft roof boxes also come with some disadvantages. First of all, soft roof boxes do not provide you with an equal amount of stability as the hard ones do.

For example, if you keep items in your soft roof box and it fills completely, and you cross below a low-hanging tree with sharp-edged branches stretching out, you might have the chance of having your roof box ripped open. No one wants this to occur, but this is one of the several risks that come with using a soft roof cargo box in place of a hardshell cargo box. You will have to remain careful about the stability of these roof boxes.

Moreover, these roof boxes are also known to be less aerodynamic, which is obviously going to affect fuel economy and gas in really long car journeys. These roof cargo carriers are perfectly fine if you have a quick ride to an airport, but you naturally do not want to have the back of your car loaded to the brim with luggage.

However, in the long trip, such as cross-country, this can firmly affect how much money you are paying on fuel; whatever there are some kinds of soft roof cargo boxes that challenge to be as aerodynamic as the durable, hard shell roof boxes.

At last, the ultimate point that you will want to be cautious of with soft roof boxes on an SUV is protection. These boxes can stand up to weather and rain like it is nothing; this is less the case with the zippers. Most soft roof boxes come with zipper closing, which can become a problem when driving in a sizeable SUV.

It is very easy for someone to unzip your soft roof carrier in the middle of the night, which means that you might have to empty the softbox and bring your stuff in the room with you when you stop for the night, which can become astonishingly embarrassing for a big SUV.

After all, soft roof boxes are great for the particular long journey, or if you want something to carry your items in during a drive to an airport, but hard roof cargo boxes are better suited to repeated trips over the country, wherever the purchase pays itself off in terms of security and durability.

-our editorial board has reviewed this article and has been approved for publication according to our editorial policy.

Best Seller List of Cargo Boxes for SUV:

SaleBestseller No. 1
Housewives 20 Cubic ft Car Roof Bag Top Carrier Cargo Storage Rooftop Luggage Waterproof Soft Box...
  • 【Cost effective: 】The roof bag is made of 1000D waterproof high quality material with strong stitching; Foldable for compact storage; You don't have to spend as much money as buying a roof box, but you have a bag with all the features of a roof box.
  • 【Large Capacity & Foldable: 】The overall size of the roof bag is 130cm x 100cm x 45cm, Folded size: 38cm x 25cm x 12cm, carry 20 cubic feet of essentials. The soft material makes it foldable and packed in a bag, then you can put it in the car.
  • 【Waterproof and robust:】The roof bag is equipped with an oversized zipper with flaps for water repellency and light-resistant, keeps your things dry and protected from dirt, rain, sun, wind and snow. More capacity, more robust, more fun to travel!
  • 【Easy to install: 】The roof box is equipped with 2 built-in fastening straps and 6 additional straps with buckles to avoid any sagging for a secure fit and the roof bag can be installed in just a few minutes!
  • 【Travel】Our foldable roof box is for your family outing, road trips, weekend adventures, luggage transport or vacation travel this summer! If you have any problems with the roof box, please feel free to contact us!
Bestseller No. 2
Thule Force XT Rooftop Cargo Box, X-Large, Black
  • A versatile roof-mounted cargo box for everyday use
  • Provides 18 cubic feet of additional packing space
  • Designed to fit a wide range a vehciles with maximum space efficiency
  • Quick-mount system "clicks" when roof box is secure and properly mounted
  • Dual-side opening for easy access to all areas of the box, from either side of the vehicle
Bestseller No. 3
Car Roof Bag Cargo Carrier, 20 Cubic Feet Waterproof Rooftop Cargo Carrier Soft Box Luggage with 8...
  • 【Safe Design】: For security reasons, we use 8 reinforced adjustable straps to keep the cargo carrier in place. These straps can strengthen the roof bag and make the roof bag more securely installed on your roof.
  • 【Large Storage Space】: Roof bag was designed to solve the problem of limited storage space in the car. 20 cubic feet rooftop cargo bag allows you to hold up 4-6 suitcases, travel luggage case, tents, sleeping bags and more. Free up inside vehicle space for more comfortable on the way.
  • 【Easy to Install】:rooftop cargo carrier fits for any car, truck, or SUV. It can be quickly and easily installed to roof rack in minutes whether your vehicle has a rack installed or not. Folds compact for easy storage.
  • 【Waterproof Design】: Made of PVC tarpauline cloth, roof bag adopts a genuine waterproof zipper, used in extreme weather and is protected with a double flap. All seams are heat welded and stitched to ensure they are watertight. But please note that it's not 100% waterproof under rainstorm weather.
  • 【BAG LUGGAGE CARRIER - TRAVEL NOW】A MUST FOR YOUR CAR.This soft cartop carrier is perfect design for happier camping, travel, move. Designed to fit all car rooftops, it can increase your vehicle's cargo space without impending on passenger comfort, making it ideal for families on-the-go, adventure seekers or anyone who needs extra space while traveling.
Bestseller No. 4
COOCHEER 20 Cubic ft Car Roof Bag Top Carrier Cargo Storage Rooftop Luggage Waterproof Soft Box...
  • Your gear will stay as dry as in a rooftop cargo box: 100% waterproof, no stitching, waterproof coated zipper and straps, zipper flap, protect car roof cargo carrier against water penetration
  • Save fuel, protect your roof, travel quietly: Features triple-layer high density 1000D PVC fabric. This material is 2 times stronger than 500D PVC fabric, which most other rooftop bags adopts and can easily rip. The coated surface can effectively protect your luggage against rain, grit, snow, wind and sun on the road.
  • Built to last: Heavy-duty fabric, no harmful chemicals, peel-proof and tear-resistant. We notice that the straps of other cargo bags can easily rip from the seam, so we doubly reinforced the strap seam. And all seams of this cargo bag are heat welded and stitched to ensure they are watertight.
  • Oversized 20 cubic feet: Massive 21 cubic feet (L52" x W40" x H17.5") of space can easily hold all luggage of a family of 5-6. Most other roof cargo carriers are small and there is not enough room to accommodate everything you need.
  • Fit all cars: Whether your car is with roof rack or not, the 8 strong straps can always secure your roof top carrier bag. In addition,If you have any questions, please link to us in time, we will do our best to help you solve the problem.
Bestseller No. 5
Thule Pulse Rooftop Cargo Box, Medium, Black
  • Durable and rugged textured ABS material is long-lasting and helps protects contents during transit
  • Fast and secure fitting using only one hand due to fast grip quick-mount system that assembles in moments
  • Passenger-side opening for easier loading and unloading. Max length of skis - 155 centimeter
  • Central Locking system provides maximum safety. The grip-friendly Thule Comfort key can only be removed if all locking points are securely closed
  • External dimensions 67 x 35 x 16 inch
Bestseller No. 6
SportRack Horizon Cargo Box (Alpine, 11 Cubic Feet)
  • Rugged construction made from impact resistant ABS material
  • Quick release attachment kit included for easy installation and removal
  • Passenger side opening for access away from traffic
  • Fits sport rack roof rack systems, square, round and most factory racks (check fit guide)
  • Holds 3-5 pairs of skis (up to 210 cm) or 2-3 snowboards
Bestseller No. 7
Thule Sidekick Rooftop Cargo Box Grey, One Size
  • Compact roofbox, ideal for small loads such as camping gear or golf clubs
  • Sturdy U-bolts with reinforcement plates and adjustable brackets provide a secure fit to rack
  • Compact design leaves room for other roof mounted accessories
  • Passenger side opening for easier loading and unloading
  • External dimensions: 54 x 25 x 15.5 inch
Bestseller No. 8
KING BIRD 100% Waterproof Roof Cargo Carrier Bag with Non-Slip Mat, 20 Cubic Feet Aerodynamic Car...
  • 100% WATERPROOF - The car top luggage bag are made of heavy PVC fabric + waterproof coating to ensure no surface leakage. 5 "wide zip cover + 5" long Velcro cover the zipper completely and keep it close to the zipper. Finally, double coat the zipper with a waterproof coating. It can do 100% to prevent water from entering the bag.
  • 20 CUBIC FEET - 52"L x 38"W x 18"H, Extra-large size saves you more interior space. Included a storage bag, fold the soft roof luggag bag into a storage bag, when not in use.
  • SAFETY ACCESSORIES INCLUDED - The roof protection pad prevents the bag from sliding during driving and protects the roof paint. The TSA combination lock will ensure that your luggage is safe during the journey.
  • FUEL CONSUMPTION REDUCE - This rooftop cargo carrier is aerodynamic design that significantly reduces wind resistance and thus saves on fuel costs.It also reduces the risk of being torn by the wind and improves durability.
  • FIT ALL VEHICLES - KING BIRD uses 4 quality door hooks and 8 noiseless straps to make it safe to work in any vehicle with or without a roof rack. Please let us know if you have any questions. We promise 1 year warranty and replacement of all parts.
Bestseller No. 9
SportRack Vista XL Rear Opening Cargo Box (Black, 18 Cubic Feet)
  • Fits SportRack Roof Rack Systems, square, round and most factory racks (Check fit guide)
  • Tool-free mounting hardware for easy installation and removal included
  • Rear opening for easy access away from traffic includes a key lock to secure contents in the box
  • ABS construction that is durable and UV-resistant; Easy to clean with mild soap and water
  • Min-max crossbars spacing: 23 5/8" - 29 3/4"; Max weight capacity: 100 pounds
Bestseller No. 10
HEYTRIP 100% Waterproof Roof Cargo Carrier with Non-Slip Bottom, Reflective Strips for Vehicles with...
  • Non-Slip Bottom - Non-slip bottom prevents the roof carrier from moving while driving. Without the hassle of lining up the roof bag with external mats again and again!
  • 100% Waterproof - Seamless hot press technology makes our roof bag 100% waterproof. The waterproof zipper and 3-inch wide zipper cover will shield your belongings from heavy rain or snow.
  • Stay Safe at Night - The reflective strips on the rear and sides of the roof bag are for maximum visibility at night, to avoid traffic accidents.
  • Universal Fit - Compatible with cars WITH or WITHOUT roof rack, easily installed in minutes. Easy to fold up into storage bag included when not in use.
  • 2 Year Warranty - BUY WITH CONFIDENCE, Heytrip roof cargo bags are built to last. If you are unhappy with any aspect of our roof bag, contact us and we'll make it right.

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Last Update : 2021-07-10

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