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While not owning an Outback, I thought the integrated crossbars in the roof rails was a brilliant design.

When reading up on the Ascent, I misread “integrated roof rails” as crossbars and thought great!

Unfortunately, they are not integrated and buying cross bars will be necessary if using the roof rack.

Was I the only one that missed this? Is the Outback design not as good as it sounds?
 

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Maybe it's to cut cost on the production. I'm pretty sure they have some consumer data to show that not all buyers necessarily want the crossbars and would be OK as an option; but would definitely like the roof rails standard.
 

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While not owning an Outback, I thought the integrated crossbars in the roof rails was a brilliant design.

When reading up on the Ascent, I misread “integrated roof rails” as crossbars and thought great!

Unfortunately, they are not integrated and buying cross bars will be necessary if using the roof rack.

Was I the only one that missed this? Is the Outback design not as good as it sounds?
The only down side I ever heard about the Outback set up was you couldn't adjust the position of the cross bars forward and back.

Be sure to buy your cross bars after market. You should be able to find them for half the price if not more than OEM.
 

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The only down side I ever heard about the Outback set up was you couldn't adjust the position of the cross bars forward and back.

Be sure to buy your cross bars after market. You should be able to find them for half the price if not more than OEM.
I hope the Ascent rails are the same as the Crosstrek. I have a Thule ski box (long) and had to adjust the crossbars as far forward as possible to clear the rear hatch door.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The only down side I ever heard about the Outback set up was you couldn't adjust the position of the cross bars forward and back.

Be sure to buy your cross bars after market. You should be able to find them for half the price if not more than OEM.
Good point. Re after market cross bars, what is the recommendation? Thule or other?
 

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FYI the ‘Subaru brand’ cross bars and roof racks are all Thule and I’ve found the price of these items to be very reasonable. At least from online parts departments.
 

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You just need to consider that the rails are now about 6' up in the air. Unless you are a pro-basketball player you are not going to find it easy to manipulate things off of the roof.

There is an optional Subaru component sold in Australia that acts like a temporary step that sticks inside of the spokes on a tire. Then it acts like a step-up. Too bad we could not get that component in the US for the Ascent and possibly the Outback.
 

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You just need to consider that the rails are now about 6' up in the air. Unless you are a pro-basketball player you are not going to find it easy to manipulate things off of the roof.

There is an optional Subaru component sold in Australia that acts like a temporary step that sticks inside of the spokes on a tire. Then it acts like a step-up. Too bad we could not get that component in the US for the Ascent and possibly the Outback.


Thule actually makes them I think and they are available here.
 

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Good point. Re after market cross bars, what is the recommendation? Thule or other?
Check amazon. There are a few options that have descent reviews, for Forester and Outback. We'll need to see what size of rails we will need for the Ascent.
 

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Another drawback to factory crossbars (in general) is the inability to go a little longer (extend beyond the rails) to accommodate more gear - something to consider. I'm planning to go with Thule Aeroblade crossbars - not sure what length yet. I'm planning to extend a few inches past the rails (both for capacity and for aesthetics).
 

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This is a bummer - I love the integrated cross bars on my Outback. Fits my Sears cargo box just fine. I too thought it would be the same on the Ascent. Curious to see what everyone else orders as an accessory.
 

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For anyone whose interested in Thule Aerobars, REI is having a 30% off sale right now online. I ordered the ARB53 with feet which according to Thule's website will fit the Ascent.
 

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The OB should have open side rails like the Ascent as the integrated bar rack hasn’t been ideal for many “Active” life style owners. Being able to adjust the distance between the bars or even adding extra bars makes the rack accommodating to all hobbies and roof rack uses.

In the case of the Ascent you buy the bar type that fits all your existing rack gear. You can also sellect bar length so your not restricted to the width between the roof rails. Rail grab clamps are used by all rack manufacturers to hold their bar to any typical roof rail. Craig’s List has been my rack equipment source since 2004. If I were to buy all my gear new today it would be several $1000 of gear. Craigs List I might have $600 invested.
 

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Another drawback to factory crossbars (in general) is the inability to go a little longer (extend beyond the rails) to accommodate more gear - something to consider. I'm planning to go with Thule Aeroblade crossbars - not sure what length yet. I'm planning to extend a few inches past the rails (both for capacity and for aesthetics).

There's a wider option that extends beyond the crossbars.

ALSO: there's a few other compatible options coming out or available (which will soon be listed as compatible) of varying sorts, including what's necessary to put a 700 pound camping rig (including people) on the roof rack.
 

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When you select your bar length do it based on need. I have three bars. One is 54, one is a custom cut down length of 58 and one is a full 66inches. I have a specific use for each. When I’m not using the rack its off the car and put away. The mileage impact and noise from the bars when nakid make them a undesirable thing to keep up there. Yes the cross bars are quieter when loaded with stuff. Except when its a basket which case its the biggest mileage hit and noisy roof rack item you can put on the roof especially empty.

The roof top tents can run between 4-6mpg hit at speed but generally don’t add much noise.

A panoramic glass roof and people who like using the roof rack generally don’t go well together. Noise being a biggie and yes no matter how careful you are a bike crank, tie down hook, or other hard item invariably makes solid contact with the roof at some point. I don’t see that big glass roof doing very well in those cases.

The Limited is essentially the Active life style model only oddly Subaru does not offer some features that Active life style types would most likely use more than the non active life style users. The front camera is something I would use all the time on rugged roads to water access points or remote trail heads. The rear camera in rearview mirror is something active life style types would probably use nearly every weekend. The cooled seats for sure cyclists and active types would use a bunch.

But as far as I can tell they will only be bundled with the panoramic roof.
 

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You just need to consider that the rails are now about 6' up in the air. Unless you are a pro-basketball player you are not going to find it easy to manipulate things off of the roof.

There is an optional Subaru component sold in Australia that acts like a temporary step that sticks inside of the spokes on a tire. Then it acts like a step-up. Too bad we could not get that component in the US for the Ascent and possibly the Outback.

I have this on my Sequoia now, for my kayak and plan on moving it over to the Ascent...A savior for those of us who are vertically challenged.


https://www.thule.com/en-us/us/sport-rack/kayak-roof-racks/thule-hullavator-pro-_-1685448


and Thule does sell the tire step here...


https://www.thule.com/en-us/us/roof-rack/accessories/thule-step-up-wheel-step-_-16354
 

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New Accessories Parts Guide Available 9/2018

Another drawback to factory crossbars (in general) is the inability to go a little longer (extend beyond the rails) to accommodate more gear - something to consider. I'm planning to go with Thule Aeroblade crossbars - not sure what length yet. I'm planning to extend a few inches past the rails (both for capacity and for aesthetics).
The extended crossbars are again available (technically, they always were, since they actually fit multiple Subaru models).

Those and other accessory changes are outlined in my post here:
https://www.facebook.com/SubaruAmbassadorRobert/posts/2229520427088970
 
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