Subaru Ascent Forum banner
1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Realizing beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I find no beauty in the Ascent’s roof rail styling. In fact, I’m scratching my head, wondering why Subaru, in their progressive design wisdom, chose to mount on what is now their crown jewell SUV, a roof rail system that is overly bulky in design and contrary to the overall refined styling of the Ascent. Specifically, I find the rail system awkwardly bulky in the leading and trailing ends, having two large black blobs of plastic on each side and more in tune with what I’d expect mounted on a rugged off roader, not a family hauler. These rails simply clash with what is a very stylish body design. At a minimum, why not upgrade the rails to a silver finish to complement the top edge of the rear bumper?

What happened to the stylish and functional rail system presented on the concept Ascent - I’d welcome that rail system! See the banner on this forum, or google Ascent prototype https://www.motorauthority.com/news...ent-aims-to-climb-busy-hill-of-crossover-suvs

My goodness, take a styling cue from the Impreza Limited 5-door, the Forester, or the Outback with its low profile roof rails with silver finish.

I use a roof rail system on my aging ML320 on a regular basis. I haul a tandem kayak and appreciate the front to rear crossbar spread of my ML320, and the Ascent’s available spread is even greater, a feature drawing me to the Ascent. I just wish the Ascent’s rails were better looking.

My hope is next model year, Subaru will offer a refined rail system on the Ascent, which could be based on trim level and in similar design to what is now offered on other Subaru models (please, save the integrated and retractable folding crossbar system for the Outback - indeed, functional, but would be ugly on the Ascent).

I’ll cross my fingers and wait and see. Oh, while I’m at it, I’m also hoping for optional power folding exterior mirrors.

Am I alone on this?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
I'm fine with the rails on the Ascent. I think they look better than the standard ones on the current Outback. I'm not a fan of the low profile rails. I have those on one of my other vehicles and the rack attachment is very finicky. I don't keep the rails on my vehicles full time, so ease of attachment and removal is important to me. I prefer sturdy functional rails over cosmetic rails. I do agree that retractable mirrors would be a nice feature. I have those on another vehicle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
160 Posts
I'm glad they aren't chrome/silver personally. I think they look fine. I do wish they would have at least offered they integrated and folding cross bars like the previous Outbacks.
This was my same thought. I was worried that they would end up putting chrome rails on like they do on top trim level Outbacks. When I finally pull the trigger on the Ascent, I am hoping that they may offer the Touring without the Chrome door handles, mirror caps... I really prefer the color matched.

I would much prefer to have a slightly bulkier rail with the built in crossbars. This way they are always there, ready to go. We like that option on my Wife's Outback. My daughter's Forester, we had to buy a system to add the crossbars (well, I had it left from my Sequoia). It will end up going on for the summer and then be taken off. Would much prefer to pull a lever, swing it across and rack stuff up. I personally think this is a HUGE miss on the Ascent.

A lot of people with families that need the additional passenger space will end up needing more cargo space and drive around with a roof carrier.

If we are going on a trip and need more space, we pull our Space Trailer instead of putting a carrier on the roof - have had it for 8 years and LOVE it. Makes loading gear easier than on top of the roof. Granted sometimes it is not worth taking the trailer so we roof rack. Camping trips, we load the bikes on the roof, gear in the trailer and SUPs on the trailer
https://www.spacetrailers.com/
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
978 Posts
My brother has a Highlander the rail system looks nice but in the end after purchasing cross rails that only go in pre determined mounting spots they are pretty useless to anyone thats active and hauls, boats, bikes, ladders, roof boxes etc.

I would rather have the old school open slotted rails you can clamp various length strait bars to either forward or back or even 3-4 cross bars if you needed a wider support area. I feel like the designers today are more into looks than usability and most likely have very little personal experience using roof racks given it shows in the design.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
107 Posts
I like them as is. Nicer than my old Outback and while I initially echoed the feeling that I wished they kept the integrated crossbars, I can understand that with everyone mounting different stuff, it's important to keep it "open" so everyone can find them useful. That said, I agree that I'd rather have strong bulky than weak low-profile, but we Subie owners have never been much driven for fashion ... we DO things with our Subies so functionality trumps something like this.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
107 Posts
Oh and on the electronic folding mirrors I give a huge "meh" ... this isn't Japan where that feature is basically a necessity with the automated parking towers (don't ever break anything on a rental in Japan if you know what's good for you). There's normally plenty of room for side mirrors and in the rare occasion there isn't (never happened to me in 46 years in the States), then just do it manually IMHO.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
978 Posts
Oh and on the electronic folding mirrors I give a huge "meh" ... this isn't Japan where that feature is basically a necessity with the automated parking towers (don't ever break anything on a rental in Japan if you know what's good for you). There's normally plenty of room for side mirrors and in the rare occasion there isn't (never happened to me in 46 years in the States), then just do it manually IMHO.
My 05 Sequoia has factory folding power mirrors. Its way over rated but Im sure the cool factor some how spurs people to buy 50-60-70-80-$90,000 cars because the mirrors fold. LOL

My current Subaru doesn’t even have folding mirrors. It was after all built in the US not shipped here. Folding mirrors were used on imported cars shipped here because they were loaded on ships parked close and ship movement had fixed mirrors banging into each other.

So the original reason for them wasn’t the reason people think they need them. LOL
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
11,133 Posts
Probably so they can hold 750 pounds with the right rails, for things such as the rooftop tents they occasionally advertise will work on the extended high capacity rails. All while clearing the moon roof (for those that have it).

The neat slim low profile rails on the Outback Tourings were pretty, and also pretty impractical. :tango_face_wink:
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
2,589 Posts
I never noticed the outback’s rails until today after i read this. They look convenient but I very much prefer the extra tie down points and versatility of the ascent’s rails.
 

·
Super Moderator
2019 Ascent Touring (CWP)
Joined
·
4,226 Posts
I would have been very happy to be able to order mine without a roof rack system at all...it will never get used just like they never got used on any other vehicle I've owned that had them. That said, I agree that the implementation could have been a little more, um...elegant...
 
  • Like
Reactions: Titanrx8

·
Registered
Joined
·
424 Posts
I hide my rails under a storage chicklet or roof top tent ? No really I don't mind how they look, but something's usually on top of my do-it vehicle, which is now the Ascent.

The Ascent rails are noticeably stronger than my old Merc GL450's pretty chrome rails, which flexed a bit at points under my 160lb tent so I distributed the weight across three crossbars instead of two. Then I transferred the tent and mounting system to the Ascent, and I'm guessing that I really don't need that third cross bar. The Ascent rails are very strong at any point along their lengths.

With three people in the tent, we're close to the roof limit, and I certainly wouldn't jump up and down in the tent. However, I'm pretty sure the rails wouldn't give, and it might be their mountings or maybe the roof structure itself that I'd be worried about first!

F.S.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
275 Posts
The roof rails serves is purpose for us. I value more the functionality of the rails. The rails carry our box for gear, snowboards, and up to two bikes. Ascents rails is similar to the tubular Xterra rails that allowed me to use most of the roofline. *The Honda Pilot (2010) we had, the rails were positioned about the last quarter of the vehicle only. *The Yakima Rocket Box we had bought for the Xterra didn't fit the Honda because it couldn't move forward enough to clear the rear hatch. *We had to test fit roof boxes to get one to fit at REI. No problem positioning the crossbars in the Ascent to clear the rear hatch for our box. Plenty of room to move the crossbars forward.

I do like the fact that the Ascent doesn't come with crossbars. *Aftermarket systems from Yakima is what I've used for years and most of the time I just carry it over to the new car.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
I do like the fact that the Ascent doesn't come with crossbars. *Aftermarket systems from Yakima is what I've used for years and most of the time I just carry it over to the new car.
My vehicle came with the package that adds the cross bars. The box said Subaru Aero bars, or something similar. Opened the box the other day and they are very generic bars, that arch. They are not what I'd pay $ for. Who knows what I'll do once I install a hitch. Normally carry bikes on a hitch rack; carry a roof box on roof.

Luckily I had a set of 58" Yakima round bars with feet that fit the Ascent rack. IMO, crossbars should be flat. This keeps bikes, etc, nice and square, regardless of where the attachments are placed.
 

Attachments

·
Administrator
Joined
·
11,133 Posts
If they look like this, those very generic looking bars are Thule made Subaru Aero bars. They are rather boring, but work very well and are well built. And, the part I really like is that they are silent (unless installed backwards, in which case they are very noisy).

I do like the fact that the Ascent doesn't come with crossbars. *Aftermarket systems from Yakima is what I've used for years and most of the time I just carry it over to the new car.
My vehicle came with the package that adds the cross bars. The box said Subaru Aero bars, or something similar. Opened the box the other day and they are very generic bars, that arch. They are not what I'd pay $ for. Who knows what I'll do once I install a hitch. Normally carry bikes on a hitch rack; carry a roof box on roof.

Luckily I had a set of 58" Yakima round bars with feet that fit the Ascent rack. IMO, crossbars should be flat. This keeps bikes, etc, nice and square, regardless of where the attachments are placed.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
275 Posts
Another good point, factory rails tend to have an arch. Now that being said, because we have the moonroof on the Ascent and I didn’t want to run a fairing (I also thought it wouldn’t work because the furthest position on the rails seemed like the fairing would sit on the glass rather than on the roof) I did purchase Yakima’s aero crossbars (Jetstream). The Jetstreams do have a slight bow to them. I was hesitant at first about the little bow coming from normally flat Yakima round bars but the ability to reduce the noise without running a fairing was the key for me.

We only use the bike tray on the roof when we have all five bikes. 4 go on the hitch. If we do a bike camping trip. Box and one bike on the roof and the hitch gets the rest.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
852 Posts
I much prefer the low profile/hideaway crossbars we had on our ‘16 Outback,looked much cleaner and there when needed.The current set up on the Ascent doesn’t bother me,having the OEM crossbars helps with the look rather than having just the rails looking useless.
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top