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Question: I want to carry standup paddle boards (in the summer) and skis (in the winter) on the rooftop of a 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo that has factory side rails, but they are not typical side rails where there is space between the roof and the rail. Are there roof racks and ski-SUP mounts to fit this configuration?
Answer:Your 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo has flush side rails. For mounting to these flush rails we highly recommend the following options from Thule Racks and Whispbar Racks (Yakima owns Whispbar)...
MULTI-PURPOSE BASE RACK CROSSBARS SYSTEMS
The Thule 460 Podium roof rack system is a complete multi-purpose base rack system and attaches to Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo flush side rails using the included Thule 4019 Podium Fit Kit brackets. A pair of Thule cross bars with end caps are also included (the LB50 50 inch length bars are the recommended size for your rooftop). Alternatively, you can also choose the Thule 460R Rapid Podium roof rack complete system. Works exactly the same way as the regular Thule 460 Podium system except that you get a pair of premium Thule AeroBlade load bars instead of the classic square load bars included with the regular Thule 460 Podium system. The Thule 460R Rapid Podium roof rack system also includes the same Thule 4019 Podium Fit Kit brackets for mounting to the Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo flush side rails. You also get a pair of Thule ARB47 47" AeroBlade load bars with end caps.
And just as Thule Racks offers the premium 480R Rapid Traverse w/ AeroBlade bars system, Yakima Racks also owns the premium Whispbar Racks line that uses aerodynamic, whisper-quiet. For your 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo you can choose between the Whispbar S25 Flush Bar system (the crossbars connect to the upright towers for a clean and finished look) and the Whispbar S17 Through Bar system (the crossbars extend beyond the upright towers to allow for more space on the crossbars for carrying gear). Both Whispbar Rack options use the Whispbar K624 Fit Kit (included with the Whispbar systems) for mounting to the flush side rails.
SKI CARRIERS AND STAND-UP PADDLEBOARD CARRIERS
With any of the base rack systems listed above installed, you can then attach any roof mount ski carriers and stand-up paddleboard carriers to the base rack cross bars. Virtually all ski racks and stand-up paddleboard racks are universal mounting, allowing you to choose the models that you like best, independent of whether it is the same manufacturer as the base rack system. Each product page will specify what base rack system cross bars the gear carrier is compatible with. Your personal preferences will be the primary factor in determining which carriers are best for your budget and needs.
Not Sure What Rack System Will Best Meet Your Needs?
The experts at ORS Racks Direct will gladly provide a personalized rack solution, detailing the best and most cost-effective system for your gear equipment carrying needs.
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