What Size Thule Fit Subaru Outback?

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I've spent many hours researching, trying to find out the perfect size of Thule cargo box for a Subaru Outback. Finally, after some search, I found the one million dollar answer with the few different sizes of Thule roof boxes on the market.

The size of the Thule that fits the Subaru Outback is 16 cu. ft. / 453 liters. It allows full tailgate opening and does pretty well for up to 4 adults with a reasonable amount of luggage.

Now we're going to learn how much weight Subaru Outback roofs are capable of holding. We'll also cover popular Thule roof cargo boxes and their maximum weights and sizes.

How Much Weight Can a Subaru Outback Roof Hold?

Before we go into our in-depth here of popular and Thule roof cargo boxes, it's essential to discuss the limitations of a weight can subaru outback hold.

According to Subaru, The maximum weight limit on a Subaru Outback roof rack is 176 lbs.

HoweverIt's important to note that weight limits might vary slightly based on what year Subaru manufactured your Outback.

One of the great features that all Outbacks have is a stowable crossbar set for outdoor adventures. Want to throw kayaks or bikes or any cargo on top? That is an elegant system, so the crossbars are integrated into the side rail on all Outbacks. you want to see how this works I recommend watching this video

If you need crossbars for your Subaru, I highly recommend the Subaru SOA567X020 Crossbar (Touring), 1 Pack by Subaru from Amazon.

to install and configure a Thule roof rack on Subaru Outback, I'd recommend watching this video

How do I Choose A Thule Box?

Thule is a brand that's been around for many years. They make some of the best roof boxes in their lineup and have an extensive lineup, so choosing which one will work best with your car or truck can be tricky!

Let's take a closer look at some top-rated Thule roof cargo boxes in the market today.

Comparison Table Of Thule Rooftop Cargo Boxes









Thule Pulse

11, 14, 16 cu. ft.

110 Ibs

Dual Side

67 x 35 x 16 in.

4-6 pair skis

36 Ibs


Thule Motion

16, 18, 22 cu. ft.

165 lbs

Dual Side

84.5 x 36 x 17 in.

5-7 pair skis

55 Ibs


Thule Force XT

11, 16, 18, 22 cu. ft.

165 Ibs

Dual side

74.8 x 33 x 18 in.

5-7 pair siks

52 Ibs


Thule vector

13 cu. ft.

165 lb

Dual Side

91 x 35 x 12.5 in

4-6 pair skis

59.3 Ibs


Thule 682 Sidekick

8 cu. ft.

75 lbs

Passenger Side

54 x 25 x 15.5"

2-4 pair siks

19. lbs.


1. Thule Pulse Rooftop Cargo Box:

One of your best potential options for a Subaru roof cargo box is the Thule Pulse rooftop cargo box from Amazon. I like the Thule Pulse Rooftop Cargo because it's available in three different sizes: 11, 14, and 16 cu. ft., so make sure to get 16 cu ft; it will be a good fit and fabulous one.

Thule Pulse roof cargo boxes feature signature Easy-Grip mounting knobs, Securelock to keep your items safe, and single side box opening capabilities. It's also made with ABS plastic to provide a rugged and durable exterior.

The Alpine Thule Pulse roof box (small) provides you with 11 cubic feet of storage space. A medium Thule Pulse box gives you 14 cubic feet of space for storage purposes. Lastly, the Thule Pulse Large features 16 cubic feet of space.

Likewise, the total weight of these roof boxes will vary based on what size item you're purchasing. For example, the Alpine box weighs 32 lbs, the medium box weighs 34 lbs, and the large box weighs 36 lbs.

Thule lists packing guidelines for each of these roof boxes regarding how many skis or snowboards each Thule Pulse box can hold; here's a closer look:

  • Thule Pulse Alpine: 4-9 pairs of skis and 2-3 snowboards
  • Thule Pulse Medium: 3-4 snowboards
  • Thule Pulse Large: 4-6 pairs of skis and 3-5 snowboards

While the Thule Pulse Rooftop Cargo Box is available in three sizes, the weight limit for each box is 110 lbs.

2. Thule Vector Rooftop Cargo Box:

Another popular roof cargo box for a Subaru Outback is the Thule Vector from Anazon. This roof cargo box features a felt-lined interior that is great for keeping your belongings safe during transport. It also features motion-activated LED lights, great for low visibility situations. However, it's available only in one size: 13 cu. ft so that means it will be perfect for two people or you need a small size for personal reasons.

Whether you or someone else needs access to items inside of your roof box, dual-side opening and closing make this easy for anyone to do. Plus, it also features the signature Thule slide lock system. This incredible feature automatically locks your roof box's lid in place to keep it securely close you're'ree looking for a roof cargo box for a Subaru Outbackthat'ss easy to instyou'll'lll be glad to know the Thule Vector Rooftop Cargo Box features a quick-mount system. Additionally, this system involves not have to use any tools for installation purposes.

This item also comes with a storage cover that keeps your Thule Vector safe while you're not using it. 

Whether buying the Alpine or Medium models, each Thule Vector roof box features a maximum storage weight of 165 lbs.

3. Thule Force XT Rooftop Cargo Box:

You might also be interested in the Thule Force XT Rooftop Cargo Box from Amazon. This roof cargo box is available in three different sizes and weight options: 11 cu ft, 16 cu ft18 cu ft, and 22 cu ft.

Like other Thule roof cargo boxes, these items feature dual side openings, rear of vehicle access, a PowerClick quick-mount system, and a LockKnob system.

The Thule Force XT Sport is the most miniature model in this line of roof cargo boxes. It weighs 32 pounds and offers 11 cubic feet of interior storage space. This roof box measures 74.75 inches in length and 24.75 inches in width.

If you're looking for something bigger, there's also the Thule Force XT Large. This roof box offers 16 cubic feet of interior storage volume and weighs a little heavier, weighing 41 lbs. The dimensions of this roof box are 74.75 inches long and 33 inches wide.

Thule ForceXT'ss XL model offers 18 cubic feet of storage space and weighs 47 lbs. This model is 82.75 inches long and 33.75 inches wide. Finally, the Thule Force XXL model offers 22 cubic feet of interior storage space. The XXL roof cargo box is 90.5 inches long and 35.5 inches wide. It weighs a total of 52 lbs.

Each ofThule'ss Force XT roof cargo boxes can carry up to 165 lbs.

4. Thule SideKick Rooftop Cargo Box:

You might enjoy the Thule SideKick Rooftop Cargo Box from Amazon, if you need something smaller. Unlike many other roof cargo boxes in this list, the Thule SideKick is best for smaller items.

The Thule Sidekick is available in one size 8cu. ft., It measures 54 inches in length and 25 inches in width. But, this item only weighs 16 lbs, making it incredibly easy to move and set up.

note: this box is Best for carrying Smaller Items

While this roof cargo box is smaller, it still comes with a wide range of signature Thule features, including a Passenger-side opening, two locking systems to keep things secure, and highly durable.

Instead of skis and snowboards, this roof cargo box is better for storing sleeping bags, golf clubs, and similar items.

The Thule Sidekick Rooftop Cargo Box can store up to 75 lbs.

5. Thule Motion XT Rooftop Carrier:

Lastly, we didn't want to leave out the Thule Motion XT Rooftop Cargo Carrier from Amazon. The Thule Motion XT is available in 16 cu ft, 18 cu ft, and 22 cu ft. In addition, this rooftop cargo box is open in three color options: black, white, and gray. Note: The Alpine model is only available in one color.

With the Thule Motion, you'll find many of the same features this company's items are known for. While the Motion boxes tend to run longer, they sit near the forward position of your roof. This means you won't have to worry about not having access to your trunk.

Another cool feature of this roof cargo box is that each item features a glossy finish. This is a nice feature for anyone who's not a fan ofThule'ss usual hard plastic exterior.

The Thule Motion XT Alpine features 16 cubic feet of space and has a 165 lb weight limit. It weighs 55lbs. The Thule Motion XT L also features 16 cubic feet of space going up a size. With that said, the L model interestingly weighs 42 lbs.

Consider the Thule Motion XT XL if you need larger roof cargo boxes. The XL version of this roof cargo box offers 18 cubic feet of storage volume. However, it weighs a bit more than the L model, at 46 lbs.

Finally, there's the Thule Motion XT XXL. This roof box features an enormous 22 cubic feet of interior volume. It weighs 55 lbs.

Each of the Thule Motion XT roof cargo boxes can carry 165 lbs.

How Do you Install A Rooftop Cargo Box? On A Subaru Outback

Here's a video generalized installation guideline:


As you can see, Thule has too many options when it comes to the rooftop cargo boxes size but remember if just four people or less than 16 cu. ft.

Its a perfect size for your Outback, but if you're looking for something big, make sure that it won't end up too big, so by following this guide it will be super easy to find the best Thule size for your Subaru Outback. However, if you want to know more about roof boxes, you might want to check out The Roof Boxes.

About the author 

Vieira Babeker

Hi! I'm Vieira. I've always been interested in different Auto Accessories

My passion here at theroofboxes.com is to provide helpful straight forward clear advice and tips for Automotive Accessories.

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