At the time of this writing, Thule currently offers 9 different roof storage options, including both cargo boxes and roof baskets. This also does not include the various sub-types associated with these items!
With so many options to choose from, it can be difficult to compare every item to see which is best for your situation.
For this reason, we’ve written this article in steps to guide you through the process of finding the best Thule roof storage product for your unique situation.
Cargo Box vs. Basket
The first step is choosing which type of roof storage works best for your situation.
The first question you should ask yourself is: “Do I need my items to be protected from the elements?”
If you need your items protected from wind, debris, and rain/snow, you are better off with a cargo box. Otherwise, a roof basket will work just fine!
Of course, you could still protect your items from the elements if you have a roof basket using a tarp or other covering, but you run the risk of the tarp flying off the vehicle. Regardless, if you use a tarp to cover a cargo basket, it will not provide the same level of protection as a cargo box.
Here are some other pros and cons of each types of roof storage:
|Less expensive||Items are exposed to elements|
|Holds larger/taller items||More wind noise|
|Easy to install||Items must be tied down|
|Better protection||More expensive|
|Increased aerodynamics||Limited height|
|Easier to load||Items are not secured in place|
In summary, you should choose a cargo basket if you are not worried about your items being exposed to the elements or if you cannot afford a cargo box. A cargo basket will also be necessary if you have tall/large items that could not fit in a cargo box.
On the other hand, you should choose a cargo box if you want better protection for your items and increased gas mileage because of the aerodynamics. Do keep in mind that cargo boxes can be expensive, though.
Best Thule Cargo Baskets
Both of these cargo baskets are great options, but I believe the Canyon XT is the best option for most people.
Thule Canyon XT
The biggest benefit of the Thule Canyon XT is the price. It costs nearly half what the Trail XT costs. Even with such a large difference in price, you are not sacrificing very much. It is not quite as stylish (in my opinion) as the Trail XT and is also a bit smaller.
Thule Trail XT
Even though the Trail XT is larger, it can only hold an extra 15lbs (6.8kg) compared to the Canyon XT. It also comes in 2 different sizes (medium and large). For such a drastic price difference, the Trail XT is only worth it if you really need the extra space.
Best Thule Cargo Carrier
If you’ve decided that a cargo carrier is the best option for your roof storage, Thule has plenty of options for you.
Currently, Thule’s selection of cargo carriers includes anything from $100 to $1,500, which is quite a large range!
Although the price ranges are so large, it is pretty straightforward to pick the right type of Thule cargo carrier for your situation.
Thule’s lower priced cargo carriers smaller, not so visually appealing, less aerodynamic, and may not have a hard shell. Meanwhile, Thule’s more expensive cargo carriers are large, aerodynamic, and stylish.
Choosing the right type of cargo carrier depends on how much space you need for your items and how much you are willing to spend.
Overall, there is one cargo carrier by Thule that stands out from the rest. It is a great balance of affordability, style, and protection. Our choice for the best Thule cargo carrier is the Thule Pulse.
The Thule Pulse is overall a great choice for a rooftop cargo carrier. It is around $500 or less, which is a great price-point for an item like this. It is stylish and can hold quite a bit of items. It is also available in 2 different sizes so you can choose the perfect size for your vehicle.