We usually have a range of steel and aluminium bars for most cars.
Steel bars are rectangular box section (32mmx22mm) and are usually steel with a black plastic coating. Steel bars are usually the cheapest option, but are not as aerodynamic, so they will be a bit noisier.
Aluminium bars (also known as aero bars) are typically about 80mm wide usually have a wing shaped profile. They are more aerodynamic than steel bars and they will be quieter in use.
A summary of the features / benefits of steel and aluminium bars
Steel Bar summary
- Usually the cheapest option
- Noisier than aluminium aero bars
- Less aerodynamic
- Most but not all of the bar can be used to mount accessories
- Good option for occasional use
Aluminium(aero) Bar summary
- Best option if you need to fit lots on your bars
- Quieter than steel bars
- More aerodynamic
- The full length of the bar* can be used to mount accessories
- Best option for regular use
- Usually more expensive than steel bars
Attaching accessories (bike carriers, roof boxes, ski carriers, etc)
Some accessories also come with fittings that are wide enough to clamp around aluminium bars. If you have got older accessories that fit to steel bars you'll need to check they will also fit aluminium bars. Sometimes older fittings won't be wide enough to fit around aluminium bars but T-track fittings are often available separately. Just contact us and let us know the make and model of your existing gear if you would like us to check if T-track fittings are available separately.
We have a guide to the different roof bar fittings. See the link below.