Toyota Rav4 Roof Rack: Does This Compact SUV Have One?


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Built for adventuring and being able to handle various types of terrain, the Rav4 is the perfect car to take yourself or your family on a vacation. With a decent payload capacity and the ability to tow an extraordinarily large capacity as a compact SUV, you might also be wondering if it comes with a conventional roof rack to keep up with its adventurous name.

The Toyota Rav4 does not come with a pre-installed roof rack. Some upper trims of the Rav4 have roof rails but without the roof rack or Toyota’s cross bars, you cannot store and carry luggage on the top of your vehicle. Toyota Rav4 roof rack cross bars can be bought separately.

Unless you have an upper trim, like the Toyota Rav4 Adventure, your car is not ready to install a roof rack and without a roof rack, you’ll have to make do with the cargo space. If this isn’t ideal for you and you need more room, you can check out the available accessories on the Toyota website to get your Rav4 suited up. Want to know which trims come with roof rails? Read on below.

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Does the Toyota Rav4 Have a Roof Rack?

The Toyota Rav4 does have a roof rack, but it does not come as a standard feature or option with a new purchase. Toyota calls their Rav4 roof rack a “roof rack cross bar”.

The Rav4 does, however, come standard with low-profile or unique-raised roof rails depending on the trim you have bought.

If you have bought a used Rav4 you will most likely have roof rails but might not have roof racks.

Did you know that without roof rails you can’t install a roof rack? Good thing every Rav4 comes equipped with roof rails so you can install your roof rack at any time.

The roof rack cross bars on your Toyota Rav4 have a maximum payload capacity of roughly around 160lbs which will allow for various items including some furniture.

What is the Point of a Roof Rack?

A roof rack can be more convenient than a trailer and can also carry a decent amount of weight.

You can carry bicycles, kayaks, luggage, snow skis and boards, and so much more without having to worry about a tow-hitch package, a trailer ball, and a trailer!

Roof racks provide you with the option to take up less space on the road and in your vehicle by securely stacking your gear on top of the car.

  • Don’t want to take your wet snow gear inside the car? Roof racks!
  • Moving house and have too many boxes that don’t fit inside your vehicle? Roof racks!
  • Went shopping and bought something that’s too big for the liftgate to close properly? Roof racks!

Roof racks are only providing solutions to your “it can’t fit, and I don’t have a trailer” worries.

The Toyota Rav4 roof rack (cross bars) is shaped in a way that wind noise is reduced, and the racks don’t affect the fuel efficiency of the car. So, you should still get the standard gas mileage from your Rav4 when you have roof racks installed.

Which Toyota Rav4 Comes with a Roof Rack?

No Toyota Rav4 comes with standard pre-installed roof racks.

What the Toyota Rav4 does come with, is standard and stylish roof rails, ready for the roof rack cross bar to be installed if you purchase this accessory separately.

All trims come with their own specific features and available packages but aside from two of the Rav4 trims, all trims offer low-profile black roof rails with the option to purchase the cross bar roof rack separately.

Here’s an easy table to show you what your Rav4 has:

Toyota Rav4 ModelComes with Roof Rails?Comes with Roof Rack?
Toyota Rav4 LE FWDLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 LE AWDLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 LE HybridLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 XLE AWDLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 XLE FWDLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 XLE HybridLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 XLE Premium FWDLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 XLE Premium AWDLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 XLE Premium HybridLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 AdventureUnique black raised roof railsAvailable as optional accessory – Adventure trim cross bars are different from other Rav4 models
Toyota Rav4 TRD Off-RoadUnique black raised roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 XSE HybridLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 Limited FWDLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 Limited AWDLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory
Toyota Rav4 Limited HybridLow-profile black roof railsAvailable as optional accessory

If your Rav4 doesn’t come with a roof rack and this is something you’re going to need, you can purchase them separately from your Toyota dealership or check out Toyota’s accessories list through their website. Here’s the Toyota Rav4 specific accessories site with two roof racks (or cross bars) to choose from depending on the trim of your Rav4.

How Do You Attach a Roof Rack to a Rav4?

If you have recently bought a new Toyota Rav4 from the dealership and have also bought yourself the roof rack cross bars accessory, firstly, congratulations on your new car! Secondly, Toyota might have the cross bar installed for you on pickup. Otherwise, you will find it in the boot space, and you’ll have to install it yourself.

If you’re installing this accessory yourself, it’s not rocket science and we’ll help to guide you though it.

What do I need to mount the Toyota Rav4 roof rack cross bars?

  1. Cross bars, one longer (for the front) and one shorter (for the rear)
  2. Aluminum brackets
  3. Plastic cover for brackets
  4. Roof rack installation tool
  5. Roof rack lock set
  6. Roof rack keys and manual
  7. Bolts, washer, keys, and driver

You may be able to purchase these all together through the dealership with a good price for getting everything, otherwise, you can purchase them separately through the Toyota parts and accessories website.

How do I install the roof rack?

Check out this detailed YouTube tutorial by Morozov Automotive who takes us through, from start to finish and in step-by-step progress, how to install Toyota Rav4 roof racks for models between 2019 and 2021.

Your parts will come with labels on them so you can easily identify each one and you will also receive an instruction manual to walk you through the process.

Once installed, you should check on your roof racks at least every 500 to 700 miles to make sure they are still on tight and not at risk of coming off and damaging your car and others on the road.

We also recommend that you test the roof rack with some luggage on a quiet road before setting off.

Conclusion

Ready to take your Toyota Rav4 for an adventure but need some additional cargo space?

Every Toyota Rav4 conveniently comes with standard roof rails attached. Although the roof rack does not come standard with any Rav4 trim can be purchased separately as an accessory or as a package from a Toyota dealership or I said party Toyota supplier.

The Toyota Rav4 roof rack crossbar is easy to install to the already included roof rails so you can attach them and set off on your journey within minutes… unless you struggle with instructions then we’d recommend you allow an hour!

Matthew Robbs

I have been working on cars since I was a kid and I love taking a vehicle that isn't working and bringing it back to life. I have owned quite a few cars over the years and looking for information about different vehicles is still hard online so that is why I started this website.

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