Review: Thule Touring S

Thule's Touring range of roof boxes is available in five sizes and two colour options to fit every need. The full range comes loaded with features and have been shaped with minimal wind resistance and noise in mind. The Touring S (or 100) is the smallest in the range, but can still swallow a healthy 330L of luggage. That translates into three standard sized bags and one oversized bag that was designed to fit inside the nose of the roof box.

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Features


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Dual-side opening on selected boxes: A patented Thule feature, enables the lid of the box to be opened from both sides of the roof. This not only means simple and easy loading and access, but also greatly facilitates mounting of the roof box to a pair of roof bars. Available for Thule Touring S, M, L and XL.


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Central locking: Each roof box has several locking points, for safety and theft protection. The central locking has a safety feature which prevents the key from being removed unless all locking points are securely closed.

Dual-force lid openers: A patented spring assisted opening system that makes it easier to open and close the lid of the box in a smooth motion.

Fast-click: Thule's unique, patented quick-mount system for fitting a roof box in seconds - safely and easily. Equipped with a torque indicator for a secure fit. Grip claws tighten around the load bar as four knobs inside the box are turned. The complete fitting is done in a matter of minutes. The grip claws are self-centring over the load bar as they are closed, for maximum security and ease of use. The grip claws fit load bars up to 80 mm width.

Mounting to your vehicle: Your vehicle will need roof rails or a roof rack to fit the roof box. The only tricky bit in using the Touring S is getting it on the roof, if you're doing it on your own. It's not especially difficult or complicated, it's just that you have to make sure you pick it up high enough not to bang it into your vehicle and then slowly lower it onto the roof. I have found the easiest to pop the Fast-Click claws into the box and lift it above your head - that way it's easy enough to slide the roof box into place. It helps that it's not excessively heavy.


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Once the Touring is on the roof rack bars, it's easy to clamp into place. The four claw-like "FastClick" clamps slide through slots in the bottom of the box in order to clamp around the rail or rack. These slots are fairly long which makes mounting the box in the right place on your roof very easy. The slots have special rubber linings that do a good job at sealing the box from water and dust. Once you've done this a couple of times it only takes a minute or two to fit the box to your vehicles roof. If you already own a Thule bike rack, the Touring can be supplied with matching keys & locks to match meaning you will only need one key for all your lockable Thule gear.

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If you're not 100% sure which roof box will be best to suit your needs, Thule has a handy Buyer's Guide to help you with your decision making.

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Specifications


Volume: 330 l
Length: 139 cm
Width: 90 cm
Height: 40 cm
Load capacity: 50 kg
Weight: 10 kg
Mounting system: FastClick
Box opening: Dual-Side
Colour: Black Glossy or Titan Aeroskin
Fits: WingBar, AeroBar, SquareBar and SlideBar with T-track Adapter 697-4
TÜV/GS approved and fulfils City Crash norm

Accessories


As with most Thule products there are several accessories available. I have been using Thule's Go-Pack set as I was in need of some new bags and these fit snugly inside the roof box. As with all Thule's products the bags are well-made

Thule MultiLift
  • Mounts to garage ceiling.
  • Uses a winch mechanism to easily lift the roof box to the ceiling.
  • Easily stores a roof box out of the way and can be used to quickly lower back down onto the vehicle when required.
  • Can also be used for kayaks, canoes, surfboards, ladders and more.
  • Built in braking system provides maximum safety while lifting and lowering.
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Thule Go-Pack Set
  • Complete four-pack of bags to make the best use of your roof box space.
  • A complete set of GoPack bags, including three GoPack 8002 and one GoPack Nose 8001.
  • Specially shaped to make use of the tighter space in the front of the roof box.
  • Protective rubber pads in the corners.
  • Shoulder strap and grips for easy and comfortable handling.
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Thule Box Light
  • For best visibility inside your Thule Roof box.
  • Optimal visibility inside the box. Special designed LED lamp and customised reflector.
  • Automatic on/off function when opening or closing box lid.
  • Easy installation to rear lid lifter.
  • Flashlight function when used outside of the roof box.
  • Fits all Thule roof boxes produced from 2009 and onward.
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Thule Box Lid Cover
  • Lid cover to protect the box from scratches and dust during storage
  • Made out of soft vlies material to protect surface from dirt and scratches.
  • Integrated pocket within the cover for easy storage when not in use.
  • Easy fitting with elastic edge, just slip over the roof box lid.
  • Washable
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On the Road


Driving a Suzuki Jimny as my main family vehicle, I have learned that 300L of extra packing space is a lot. Going away for a long weekend with my wife, kid, bicycling and motorbike gear, plus everything else needed to stay over in a self-catering chalet in the middle of nowhere is no challenge for the Touring S. Important to note that we have a baby that is only a couple of month's old meaning we have to pack quite a bit of supplies and always take her camping cot with us when we go away.


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Inside the box there are several tie-down points and the box ships with ratchet-straps. I didn't bothered with these as the full available "floor space" was always used so there was no risk of bags moving around under braking or acceleration.

I have used the Touring on several off-road adventures and have had no issues with it shifting or any of the Fast-Click grips working themselves loose - no matter how rough the terrain. Driving in a convoy on very dusty roads will see some traces of dust get inside the box, but much less than what I expected and none of it found it's way inside any of the Go Pack bags. Twice already I've had the box mounted on a trip that saw us driving through quite a bit of rain, but the inside stayed bone-dry.

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I have a habit of loading heavier gear inside my vehicle leaving clothes, bedding and some snacks to go on the roof. This helps keep my Jimny's centre of gravity as low as possible and roll-over to a minimum. I would expect the roof box to have no effect on roll over on just about any other vehicle as the Jimny has a very narrow and short wheelbase.

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I've tried to keep an eye on the impact on fuel consumption, but it's been virtually impossible due to the variables involved when travelling with the Touring loaded compared to my usual driving. I can however say that there's no discernible increase in wind noise.

Verdict


The Thule Touring S is a great solution for travelers, families and adventurers looking for some extra space when hitting the road. It mounts secure and is virtually dust proof. The design and features are well thought out making it easy to use.

Pricing


Touring S Roof Box: R 7,299.00
Go Bag Set of 4 Bags: R 2,499.00




2 Comments

Gandalf, Nov 10 2015 12:11

That Jimny though.. WANT

Iwan Kemp, Nov 11 2015 10:48

That Jimny though.. WANT

 

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