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What is a Roof Rack?

What are the different types of Roof Racks?

How are Roof Racks Mounted?

What Roof Racks suit my Vehicle?


What is a Roof Rack?

Cargo space in a vehicle can be a limiting factor, especially when getting away on the weekends, camping, and 4wdriving. This is where roof racks come into play. Roof racks and roof trays allow you to expand your overall vehicles’ usable cargo space by attaching a rack or tray to the roof of your vehicle. A tailored roof rack or roof tray system is the perfect choice for transporting and storing items such as luggage, bicycles, kayaks, and much more. 

When loading your vehicle make sure you take the appropriate steps to secure your load, along with appropriate strapping and tension. When securing items to roof racks you should always follow manufacturer and vehicle recommendations and comply with recommended load carrying capacities. 

What makes up a Roof Rack?

A traditional cross bar roof rack is composed of 3 components. 

  1. Crossbar
    The crossbar does all the heavy lifting and runs across your car. The crossbar has inbuilt channels that allow for fitment of accessories and tiedown points, such as brackets, straps, holders, and carriers. There are two main types of crossbars with a choice between the aerodynamic and sleek sports design, or the powerful Heavy Duty (Commercial) design.
  2. End Supports
    The end supports are the connection piece between the crossbar and mounting kit. End supports take different shapes depending on the vehicle they are attached to and are specifically designed for the type of mounting kit and crossbar used. 
  3. Mounting Kit
    The mounting kit is unique to each individual vehicle, designed for that make, model and even down to the year it was made. Rola mounting kits are carefully engineered and tailored to each vehicle to ensure a secure, safe and solid fit. Each mounting kit is designed to fit roof racks to rails, anchor points, door straps, tracks, and much more.
    Find out more with our guide to “Roof Rack Mounting”

What are the different types of Roof Racks?

For four decades, Rola have designed and built Australian roof racks of all different styles and use cases. With a range of accessories suitable for every vehicle, Rola roof racks are a one-stop shop for your cargo needs. The different types are outlined below.

Sports Concealed

A concealed sports roof rack offers aerodynamic efficiency to your cargo transportation. Offering a lightweight and minimalistic look without compromising strength & aesthetics, these roof racks are excellent for transporting sports and camping gear such as kayaks, bikes, and outdoor equipment.

Sports Extended

Aerodynamics with more length to carry more stuff! These roof racks are typically wider than a concealed bar and offer greater support for wider loads or roof trays due to its slight overhang. The aerodynamic shape provides lower wind noise at high speeds and an extended roof rack provides an excellent solution for carrying many accessories and cargo at once.

Heavy Duty (Commercial)

If you are a tradie or have the need to carry heavy items every so often, Rola heavy duty range offers both strength and versatility without the compromise of looks. Offered in both Silver and Black, the heavy-duty range is capable of a much more bespoke setup for your needs. The Heavy Duty roof rack also has many dedicated commercial accessories such as ladder rack systems, pipe clamps, aerial mounts, beacon plates, shovel holders and a range of tie-down options for wood and other hard to carry items. 

Low Mount

The revolutionary low mount roof rack minimises the size of the crossbar eliminating the need to have a full-length cross bar. This makes your setup lighter and lower. Rola Low Mount utilises interlocking blocks and is designed specifically for the Titan Tray. This allows for a clean, strong, and efficient fitment. The reduction in the crossbar weight also leaves more of your maximum roof capacity available for luggage.

An excellent way to evenly distribute the weight of your load on the roof of your vehicle. 
This low profile and aesthetically pleasing design will attach to the vehicle utilising the best mounting options. Made of stainless steel and finished off with powder coating, the ridge mount option will outlast the Australian elements, and look great whilst doing it.



How are Roof Racks Mounted?

Fitting roof racks onto your vehicle isn’t a one size fits all solution. Different vehicle designs mean that roof racks must be mounted a specific way. The Rola tailor-fit roof rack range is customised specifically for your vehicle, designed to fit perfectly and securely.

Each roof rack is designed to utilise the best mounting point for that vehicle; below is an overview of each way of mounting a roof rack:

Anchor Point Roof Racks

As the name suggests, the roof racks are anchored to a single location on each side of the vehicle using the factory roof mounting points. It is the strongest choice of mounting for vehicles without existing rails or gutters. Threaded anchors (Anchor Point Bolts) work to create a robust install into factory locations on your roof. Roof racks utilising anchor point mounts and can offer locking features to prevent theft.

Another type of anchor point is tuff anchor points. These anchor points aren’t factory designed and are drilled into the roof of your vehicle to create a new, stable way to mount your roof racks.

Gutter Mount Roof Racks

Although most manufacturers are steering away from guttering on cars, there are still a number of vehicles where this is the best solution for mounting roof racks. Gutters are a traditional car design, that protect passengers from water run off when opening doors. These also serve as a sturdy mounting points for roof racks.

These racks are fitted to gutter grooves on the side of a vehicle and are tightened either side accordingly. The inclusion of a rubber boot protects your vehicle’s finish from the mounting mechanism and end supports. This mounting type is excellent for older vehicles or those that do not have factory-fitted mounting points or roof rails.

Rail Bar (Solid or Open) Roof Racks

Used for vehicles with factory installed roof rails, these roof racks attach to the rail bar with rubber feet and thick 304 stainless steel clamps. An allen key is used to tighten the grip on each side of the vehicle. For optimum strength, it is recommended that you fit your front roof rack above the join between the front and rear doors. 

Track Mount Roof Racks

Using the vehicles roof, a metal plate is bolted and riveted onto the roof. This somewhat invasive procedure involves drilling holes into your roof to have a fixed mounting point. This is the ideal solution for vehicles without a rail or factory fitted mounting holes. 

The roof rack mounts can be fitted securely on the track and offer a typically heavy-duty metal bar style roof rack for weightier loads for commercial uses. It is recommended that Track Mount roof rack installations are done by a professional.

Naked (Door Mount) Roof Racks

A bare or naked roof does not have any anchor points, rails, gutters, or tracks for a roof rack. In this situation a Door Mount roof rack is required which involves clamping the end support into the door jam and locking them in. These roof racks are typically lockable to prevent theft.



What Roof Racks suit my Vehicle?

Our tailored range of Roof Racks, Low Mount Roof Racks and Ridge Mounts are designed specifically for each vehicle, utilising the best mounting position for that vehicle. This optimises the performance of your roof rack and vehicle together and ensures that you always get the best solution to your carrying needs.

We service a wide range or vehicle makes including, but not exclusive to:


What are the benefits of using roof racks?

Roof racks are perfect for anyone wanting to carry large equipment on their vehicle. Storing these items on the roof maintains easy access to all parts of your car and maximises your car's storage potential. With a wide range of specialised storing solutions you can easily hold bikes, watersport equipment and boxes to keep your items protected from the elements.

How much weight can a roof rack hold?

The maximum weight you can carry will always be the lowest rated part of your roof carrying system. Tray’s normally have the highest carrying capacity, but these capacities are influenced whether stationary, travelling on road or off road. Most roof racks are designed to carry more than the vehicle it's attached to. This leaves the vehicle's carrying capacity which is normally the weakest part of the system. Each individual vehicle has its own load bearing capacity and this should in most cases be used at the carrying capacity of the vehicle..

How much do roof racks cost?

At Rola we have a roof rack option to suit everyone - including your budget. We have an extensive collection of roof rack storage options made from different materials and in different shapes and sizes. If you’re after a high-quality, long lasting roof rack - look no further than the range from Rola.


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