The Yakima Showcase is a new cargo box from Yakima designed to haul extra gear for your mountain bike road trips. It’s easy to install, simple to operate, and looks great too.
I’ve been testing the Showcase 15 which offers 15 cubic feet of storage space. This is basically enough to fit 4 to 5 stuffed duffel bags and backpacks. On one trip I managed to fit two bags plus a whole bike with wheels inside the box, though this probably isn’t what Yakima had in mind when they designed this product. Yakima says skis and snowboards up to 190cm in length can fit inside, if you’re into that sort of thing. Camping gear fits well too, especially squishy stuff like sleeping bags and air mattresses.
The rear end of the Showcase 15 is tapered to allow the rear hatch to open on most vehicles when the cargo box is installed.
The Showcase 15 weighs 46lbs, so it’s best to have a friend help you get it up on your vehicle’s roof, though as you can see in the video, I was able to install the box myself. Once the cargo box is in place, you don’t need any tools to install it. Just slide the clamps to match up with the bars on your roof rack, tighten, and secure the clamps. The Showcase clamps are universal so they generally work with a Yakima rack, factory rack, or even racks from other companies.
SKS Locks are included with the Showcase 15 to keep your gear secure, and Yakima has a great trick for making sure you never forget to lock the box or lock the key inside. When the box is open and the lock is unlocked, the key can’t be removed from the lock, making it difficult if not impossible to forget to close and lock the box, especially if the key is attached to your vehicle’s key ring.
The Showcase opens from either side, which I found to be really important. On one trip I needed to carry a bike on top of the car, which meant I could only access the cargo box from one side. This is also helpful during installation in case you can’t reach the clamps on the far side.
One concern with adding a cargo box to the top of a vehicle is road noise and a decrease in gas mileage. Yakima has clearly done their homework over the years, refining the design of their cargo boxes, as the Showcase was neither loud nor a gas hog in my tests. I definitely found the cargo box to be much quieter and more aerodynamic than having bikes on the roof.
The Yakima Showcase is made in the USA and sports a high quality automotive-grade gloss finish that shines and sparkles in the sun. I tested the black version, but Yakima also offers the Showcase in a color they call “Quicksilver” gray. There is a larger version of the Showcase, the Showcase 20, which adds 33% more cargo room over the Showcase 15.
The Showcase 15 retails for $679 and can be purchased online through Yakima’s website, Yakima.com. One thing to note is that the Showcase 15 ships in a HUGE box that has to be delivered by a freight company and not just a regular UPS or FedEx truck.
The Yakima Showcase 15 offers a simple, stylish solution for expanding the amount of gear you can haul on your next adventure, without having to trade in for a bigger vehicle.
Thanks to Yakima for providing the Showcase 15 for review.