Yakima Skybox 16 Vs Yakima Skybox 18

yakima skybox

yakima skyboxYakima Skyboxes are well known for being relatively big in size. They are ideal for providing that extra space that you may require to make all your journeys a tad more enjoyable and comfortable. Yakima skybox 16 and Yakima skybox 18 are both a part of the Yakima skybox family, so they share a bunch of similarities.

This article will compare these two models in their features and functionality. By the end of the article, you will hopefully be able to determine the one that would serve you better.

Yakima Skybox Carbonite Cargo Box
  • Optimal Vehicle Fit: The calculated tapered design of the cargo carrier complements the contours of your vehicle’s rear end for optimal clearance and prevents any obstruction
  • Ample Cargo Space: Yakima rooftop cargo carrier with 16 cubic feet of cargo space provides ample room to stow away all your gear and essentials for your upcoming adventure
  • Secure Access System: SuperLatch security system guarantees that your cargo remains secure; Dual-sided opening to access your gear from either side of your vehicle
  • Durable and Quiet Lid: The aerodynamic carbonite-textured lid of the rooftop cargo box is not only pleasing but also adds an extra layer of durability while minimizing wind noise
  • Specifications: Car roof cargo carrier measures: 92″L x 24″W x 16″H; Weight: 47 lbs; Fits gear for up to 3 campers; Securely holds skis and snowboards up to 185cm long

Last update on 2024-05-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Model Product Weight Product Dimensions Minimum Crossbar Spread Maximum Crossbar Spread
Yakima Skybox 16 47 lbs 81 x 36 x 15 inches 24 inches 36 inches
Yakima Skybox 18 52 lbs 92 x 36 x 16 inches 24 inches 42 inches

Comparison between Yakima Skybox 16 and Yakima Skybox 18

While they belong in the same roof box series, the Yakima Skybox 16 and Yakima Skybox 18 have notable differences. For example, they are not the same size as one is slightly bigger than the other. The similarities and differences between these two roof boxes are discussed in more detail below:


The Yakima skybox 16 and 18 models are constructed from lightweight yet long-lasting plastic material. Being quite sturdy in its design, this material is resistant to breaking, bending, or twisting. Thus, both skyboxes are pretty strong and, therefore, suitable for ferrying heavy cargo.

So, both roof boxes are on an even playing field when it comes to material. You can use them in all sorts of weather conditions and carry all kinds of cargo without fearing that they may get damaged. This is to say that they are both durable and capable of serving you for a long time.


Like many other highly effective roof boxes, both models are designed to be aerodynamic. They feature a tapered, low-profile design with a sleek carbonite textured lid. This design greatly reduces wind noises and drag, enhancing your vehicle’s movement and overall performance.

An additional feature that maximizes their ease of use is the side opening mechanism. The boxes open from both sides, which creates clearance whenever you want to open the rear hatch. In addition, this mechanism enables you to access your cargo with ease even while on the go.

Moreover, both the Yakima skybox 16 and 18 have an undercut tail design. This helps by providing the extra space necessary for your vehicle’s hatch to open freely. Also, these boxes have sliding clamps that can work with most crossbar styles and spread. The sliding clamps enable you to install the boxes fast and with great ease, without needing tools.

Essentially, neither of these models tops the other when it comes to a functional design since both are created with utmost efficiency in mind.


The two Yakima models vary in size. They have different lengths, widths, and heights. With a length and width of 81 inches and 36 inches, respectively, the Yakima 16 model is designed to handle cargo that may be longer than they are wider. Therefore, it can easily ferry snowboards and skis and still have extra room for more cargo.

The Yakima skybox 18 model is slightly bigger and boasts a solid 92 inches in length. Thus, it is quite long and only ideal for vehicles with a spacious roof rack. To help matters, this model features a tapered design to minimize hatch interference.

The sizes of these models require you to consider the size of your roof rack. Ideally, a roof rack should be big enough to fit a roof box and leave some clearance space for easy driving and access to the trunk.

The downside of big roof boxes is that you may need an extra pair of hands to help with the installation process. This can be quite an inconvenience if you are traveling alone.


The Yakima skyboxes are at the top of their game in terms of security. Both of these models feature Super Latch Security bars on either side which ensure that the cover is always closed completely. Moreover, this system also ensures that you cannot remove the key from the lock before all three inner locks are engaged.

You can, therefore, enjoy peace of mind when driving, being sure that the roof box is closed whenever you have the key at hand. In addition, the three-lock system greatly enhances security and makes these boxes hard to break into. Thus, it is highly unlikely that you will suffer pilferage during transit or when you are out in the woods.

So, the Yakima skybox 16 and Yakima skybox 18 are on the same level when it comes to security. They have an identical lock set up. Any of them would be suitable for you.

Carrying Capacity

The Yakima skybox 16 model provides about 16 cubic feet of space, while the skybox 18 has a volume of 18 cubic feet. While both are spacious enough, the latter is obviously bigger and can fit more items than the former.

As such, the skybox 16 can carry up to 125 pounds of load. This is about the same weight as camping equipment for three people. Therefore, if you are a small family or a small group of friends out on an expedition, this roof box would be perfect.

Elsewhere, you can fit up to 165 pounds of luggage into the skybox 18. This is the equivalent of camping gear for five people. Thus, it is suitable for a larger group of people.

The kind of cargo that you will carry will, therefore, greatly influence the model that is most appropriate for you. For carrying bulkier luggage that may require more room, the Yakima skybox 18 would be the perfect candidate.


For obvious reasons, the skybox 18 is slightly more expensive than the skybox 16. The skybox 18 is bigger and thus, has a bigger storage capacity than the skybox 15. This means that the skybox 18 can be used by a larger group of people.

Final Words

Yakima skyboxes are at the top of their game when it comes to having great features. They provide quality for money and are designed with the aim of meeting the consumers’ every need in mind. The Yakima skybox 16 and Yakima skybox 18 models are similar for the most part but vary slightly depending on the features in consideration.

The main difference between these two models is the carrying capacity. The skybox 18 is bigger and, thus, can fit more items than the skybox 16. Other features such as material, quality, design, and security are similar between the two boxes.

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