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Eight cool accessories you can fit to your dirt-loving Subaru

Because Subarus are excellent travel- and adventure companions, their owners often accessorise them with items that make them even more functional. We chose eight accessories that will make your Subaru an even better do-anything vehicle.

Eight cool accessories you can fit to your dirt-loving Subaru

1) Roof-top tent

If you don’t like towing a caravan or paying for expensive hotel rooms, a Front Runner rooftop tent can turn your Subaru into a glamping venue wherever you’d like it to be. The sturdy Front Runner Slimline roof rail rack kit provides an excellent platform for your roof tent – and best of all, it is available even on Subaru’s most compact adventure wagon, the XV.

Price: R12 100 (tent only)

2) Roof box

If you have too much stuff for it to fit inside your Subaru, but not quite enough to justify towing a trailer, why not place it in a roof box? Aerodynamic design means that contemporary roof boxes are hardly a drag on your Subaru’s appearance or fuel consumption. Thule’s Force XT has a loading volume of 500 litres (equal to a large sedan’s boot) and can carry 75kg of cargo. It is also easy to place and click into place, thanks to Thule’s considered Swedish design.

Price: R14 500

3) Bike carrier

In most of the world’s popular mountain biking geographies – Canada, New Zealand, France and South Africa – the vehicle of choice to transport bikes is often a Subaru. The combination of all-wheel drive traction and robust gravel track ability makes Subarus popular amongs mountain bikers.But how best to transport your bike? The superior solution is a tow-bar mountain bike rack, as opposed to roof-mounted bike transport. A roof-mounted bike rack is often challenging to load- and unload, and it affects aerodynamics, which increases fuel consumption.Best to go with a traditional Thule EasyFold XT 3, which can accommodate three bikes up to 45kg (in total) and allows tailgate access. Isn’t 45kg a lot for three bikes? Yes, and that is because this Thule rack has been designed to factor in the additional mass of newly popular electric bikes, which weigh a lot more than traditional mountain bikes.

Price: R17 000

4) Roof blades and cross bars

Some outdoor and adventure toys are best placed above the cabin area of your Subaru. Due to their shape, most watersport equipment is best suited to roof-carrying. Surfboards, kayaks and SUPs are all too long for a tow-bar mounted racking solution. They require to be mounted longitudinally, which is where having roof rail cross bars are useful. If you own a Subaru Outback, you can simply deploy the bars that are already embedded in its roof recesses.
Price: Contact a Thule centre for options and prices (or purchase an Outback!)

5) Splash guards

If you often drive muddy roads with your Outback, Forester or XV, order mud deflectors (called Splash guards) for the wheel arches. These help to keep mud ‘sprayed’ by the tyres off the car’s flanks. Mud can have abrasive material hidden in its composition and adversely affect your Subaru’s paint finish over time.Having mud collect in the wheel wells also create an opportunity for your Subaru’s suspension components or brakes to become needlessly exposed to containments and abrasives, creating unnecessary wear. Get these splash guards directly from your Subaru dealer.Prices: R859 (front), R1 015 (rear)

6) Extended maintenance plan
This might not immediately impress anyone at the local MTB night ride, but it will make your car even more desirable when you wish to trade it. Every new Subaru has a 3-year / 75 000-km full maintenance plan as standard. This can be extended to 4 years / 105 000 km, 5 years / 120 000 km or 5 years / 150 000 km. On the Forester this will cost an extra R11 800, R20 600 or R28 000, for example. Extended maintenance plans are a paper upgrade which hedges more future value into your Subaru than most tangible accessories you can purchase and fit to the vehicle.

Prices: from R11 000

7) Cargo step

Subaru vehicles beg for road trips and adventurous journeys, but they also often run errands to the store or serve on school lift club. Not everyone’s a CrossFit disciple who knows how to properly lift and load bulk or rough surface items into the back of a vehicle.If you wish to preserve the trim of your Subaru’s luggage compartment or rear bumper, a resin cargo step (scuff guard) for the tailgate’s contact area will save your vehicle’s rubber sealing and prevent it from prematurely ageing. With the cargo step in place, you can confidently rest an object, before perfectly angling it into place, without causing damage.

Price: R1 722

8) Nudge bar

Subaru Southern Africa offers local Forester owners a factory-approved, dealer-fitted nudge bar. It’s made from stainless steel, so it won’t rust, and is stronger than conventional steel. Besides the safari look, what is a nudge bar good for?Well, if you do have the unfortunate experience of striking a guinea fowl or small animal at night, dawn or dusk, the nudge bar should prevent the poor animal from going through your Subaru’s grille and damaging the radiator – which is usually renders your vehicle immobile.

Price: R4 500


Accessories available from Subaru dealers, Front Runner and Thule. Some of the  prices above are model specific and for guideline purposes. Please confirm prices with your dealer or fitment centre.