As I noted in my post about installing the OEM crossbars, we have a Yakima SkyBox that I was hoping to use to increase the cargo capacity of our new Highlander. Unfortunately, Yakima says it’s not compatible.
Not compatible? Why? It has adjustable clamps that should be able to grab just about any crossbar shape, including square, round, factory, and “WhispBar.” And it can be adjusted down to a bar spread of as little as 24″ while the OEM crossbars have a spread of 27.5″, so…
Update: I tested it myself, and the SkyBox works fine (imho) on the new Toyota Highlander. Click that link for details and photos.
I was left scratching my head. Is is just that Yakima hasn’t had a chance to test it, and are thus unwilling to commit to a positive answer? Or is there a known incompatibility. I e-mailed their support address to ask.
Here’s their response:
“Unfortunately, we needed to not approve the Highlander factory cross bars for use with our cargo boxes. The size and shape of the crossbars allowed our cargo boxes to not be held securely and also they would flex allowing the box hardware to cause damage to the roof as well. Sorry for the bad news.”
Perhaps he’s right that the clamps aren’t compatible with the shape of the OEM crossbars. Knowing what I know about both the SkyBox and the crossbars, this would surprise me, but… I’ve been
As for the bars flexing to the point that the box might damage the roof? I find that hard (impossible, even) to believe. I’ve noted in the past that the OEM crossbars sit ca. 4″ off the roof so I can’t imagine how they’d flex enough for the mounting hardware to get anywhere near the roof.
Something to keep in mind: I’ve seen several mentions online about the SkyBox performing perfectly well on supposedly incompatible vehicles. I’m thus planning on testing this out myself.
We’re actually heading to the beach later this week so, before I latch the SkyBox to our Odyssey (our preferred vehicle for long trips with our family of six), I’ll test it out on the Highlander. And I’ll report back soon after.