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Maximum weight on Jimny's roof and rails

01 May 2020 11:34 #221731 by Bosanek
How much is the officially maximum permissible weight load on Jimny's roof (1998-2018)?
What is the practically recommended maximum to avoid damaging its factory longitudinal roof rails or the cabin?

I read the owner's manual but could not find this info.
Where is it written?

I use a 14 kg heavy Thule roof box for years and I am careful not to load it more than cca 40 kg. That gives about 55 kg total weight. I have not had problems with the factory roof rails, but the car does behave top-heavy while driving with the roof box loaded.

Now I am considering using a much larger roof box which on itself weighs 26 kg. So I wonder how much "weight room" do I have left. I do not want to damage the factory roof rails or the cabin.

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01 May 2020 13:16 - 01 May 2020 13:31 #221734 by Scimike
This is a can of worms with individual interpretation of the printed information supplied by Suzuki. So here is my take on this :-
No maximum load is specified for the roof. Limits will be the maximum load of your chosen roof rack system, and any applicable local traffic laws (unsafe load etc) and the maximum vehicle GVWR weight. Section 7 of 2007 Owner Manual (loading and towing) deals with vehicle GVWR and loading. You need to tell your insurance if you change the roof rack system as it's a modification.
The maximum load for the Suzuki roof rails (if fitted) is 30kg (page 4-11 of 2007 owners manual), maximum gross vehicle weight including driver, roof load and trailer tongue weight must not exceed max GVWR. The rails are plastic and so I would be cautious above this on the standard rail system. So you are already over the roof rail limit, I don't know what you have left until you hit maximum GVWR.
Hope this helps, but just my interpretation of the document stated. I can scan the pages if you want to read yourself.

PS this is G3 info. GVWR = Gross Vehicle Weight Rating = 1420kg for standard M13A
Last edit: 01 May 2020 13:31 by Scimike. Reason: Clarify Gen 3
The following user(s) said Thank You: TillymintDLG

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02 May 2020 11:12 #221786 by Busta
People often cite that the reason for the low weight limit is the plastic ends on the roof rails however I suspect it's the other way around. I suspect the 30kg limit is to maintain vehicle stability, and seeing as they don't recommend carrying high weights on the roof there is no need to supply heavy duty roof bars. Also, I've never seen the plastic ends break.
Adding lots of weight to the highest part of a tall thing makes it much more unstable, and that's very undesirable if you have to make an emergency manoeuvre. It's also very undesirable if you are driving on uneven terrain. Given the Jimny has a total payload of just 320kg, which can easily be met with a passenger in each seat and a flask of tea in the boot, there is little need to have a high carrying capacity on the roof. Still, 30kg is enough for 2 bikes, or a kayak, or some lengths of wood from the builders yard, or a small roof box full of camping gear, so it's hardly an inconvenience.

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02 May 2020 12:07 #221791 by Lambert
Having replaced the factory longitudinal bars with a pair of transverse ones using the same roof studs I have made it a lot more versatile for carrying length with Dreadnaught. However I don't do that every day so pay a little in additional wind resistance but that's fine for the convenience. Also by eliminating the factory bars I have kept the overall height lower than having both longitudinal and transverse bars together I have also saved the 5?kg of the extra bars which is nice. However and this is the biggest thing I refuse to put anything on the roof that weighs more than I would be prepared to carry on my shoulder, I.e. less than 30kg. The roof is only for lightweight stuff that is too big for the interior.

Dreadnaught (black 2011)

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09 May 2020 09:57 #222042 by Bosanek
Thank you all for quality replies.

So, if I understand properly, the load rating for BOTH factory longitudinal roof bars together is 30 kg?

Well it appears that I had already regularly exceeded that load carrying capacity of the factory longitudinal plastic roof rails by carrying a 14 kg heavy Thule Ocean 200 roof box loaded with about 40 kg of stuff. That attests that the roof rails can take about 55-60 kg of load together.

I can also confirm that the vehicle does behave significantly more top-heavy with such load on. The effect is lessened if the vehicle is also full of passengers at the same time, because their butts do lower vehicle's center of mass. So the worst situation is having a full / heavy roof box on top an only the driver inside the cabin.

I had to make an emergency braking once from 80 km/h to standstill when I suddenly encountered a herd of wild boars crossing the road. There were 4 passengers inside and the roof box was full to the brim. Plus a lot of baggage inside the cabin (the 4th passenger was an emergency pickup due to their car being stranded).

The car behaved very wobbly during that emergency braking. I suspect, had the brakes been improperly adjusted to "pull" to one side during braking, that it would have been close to tipping over.

I agree that from a practical perspective, loading the roof more than say 60-70 kg in total is totally unwise, with factory longitudinal bars or not.

Also this larger roof box which I was considering is 235 cm long - about 60 cm longer than Jimny's roof. It would look like a boat on the car, and it would be quite "unaerodynamic".

Thule Ocean 200 (175 cm long) is just as long as Jimny's roof and thus looks like made for it.

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09 May 2020 15:19 #222058 by Busta
I suspect that if you asked Suzuki they would say the maximum load on the roof is 30kg regardless of whether you are using factory bars or something bolted directly to the roof.

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