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I know there's a lot of debate on the forums about which is the best rack for the E. In my case, I really needed the cargo space and I park in a garage at home and work so the Gobi made the most sense for me.

I thought I'd post my experience with Gobi in case anybody else is fence-sitting on getting this rack. It took me about 5 months to commit b/c it's so darn expensive ($1300 direct from GobiRacks.com)

I have a wife and 11 month old baby and we had a camping trip scheduled. The only way I could fit everyone, our gear, and bikes was to get some sort of rack. I figured the Gobi would be the most versatile as we do many different activities as a family.

I called Gobi 1.5 weeks before our trip. To my amazement a real-live-person answered the phone on the 2nd ring! She was extremely helpful and gave me advice to help me decide between the two models available for the element (I got the stealth) and informed me that it would arrive in 2 weeks. I let her know my situation and she worked it out so that I would receive the rack the day before our trip.

I was really worried that something would go wrong, but as promised, the rack arrived the morning before my trip. Note that it comes in a HUGE box, and you'll need to take it out of the box to transport in the E (see pic below).

It took about 3 hours to put together thanks to the horrible directions (seriously Gobi - you can do better than that) and to the fact that I ran out of daylight after work. Once you figure out how everything goes together, putting the rack on is really easy, but it would've been a lot easier if I had an allen-wrench with a rubber handle as some of the screws required some muscle.

This is a two-person job for sure, as getting the rack on the E requires you to lift it over your head and it isn't light. You'll also need two people to properly install the rear attachment points, which is nearly impossible to do by following the directions.

Once on, the rack looks great. I took it for a test drive on the freeway and got up to 80mph without any noise. You wouldn't even know its up there.

The next day we loaded up the rack and here's what I was able to easily fit on it:
2 Camping Chairs
1 Camping table
1 Folding patio chair
2 Large TYR tri bags
1 10x10 REI "habitot" tent
1 Pack-N-Play
1 Bob offroad stroller

To my surprise there was no noise even with the rack loaded up.

I need to find a better cargo net, but other than that loading and unloading the rack is easy even without the ladder (that I didn't opt for). You can easily open the doors and stand on the tailgate and tires to reach everything (i'm only 5'6" and had no problem).

Here's some pics of it loaded up:
 

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As long as you are happy with it, you shouldn't care what anyone else says!!
I know you are going to catch hell for the price from other memebers, but it's
your hard earned money!!!!!!

Me personally, I think it looks GREAT!!! Like Yoda said, it fits the E nicely!!!

I hope you and the family have an AWESOME camping trip.

Post pix of the E from your trip when you get back!!!
 

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I agree, this rack is definately a nice fit for the Element and it's definately on the high end of the price scale. If money wasn't a concern though, I would own one :rolleyes:
 

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Yep...looks awesome. Same as mentioned above, if it weren't for the money, I'd have one myself.

Enjoy and share the stories and pics!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the positive feedback!

Thanks for the great feedback. I'll definitely post more pics here as they become available. Also feel free to send me a PM if you're interested or have any questions about this rack - I'm happy to share.
 

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Looks sweet on the E. Normally I don't balk at paying a higher price for an excellent piece of equipment but damn... That is a lot of money for a rack! I still may end up with one eventually but it will take some more thought. I look forward to your feedback on the rack!
 

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If you buy a Gobi, get a ranger not a stealth. Way more functional.

If you buy a Gobi, get a ranger not a stealth. Way more functional. Looks better too. I bought a spider cargo net at Menards for $15 that attaches to the bars perfectly. You can haul anything you can fit up there.
 

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Ha as cool as the ladder looks in the back.. I would be always self conscious of putting ladder on the back of an E... not enough trail-cred for something like that...
 

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That is a pretty cool rack. Does anyone know if they affect the ability to open the rear sunroof? I understand the rack sits over the sunroof, but is there enough clearance to still open it for ventilation purposes? It'd take some slick selling to get my wife on board with a Gobi Rack, but I'm definitely interested. :D
 

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Ha as cool as the ladder looks in the back.. I would be always self conscious of putting ladder on the back of an E... not enough trail-cred for something like that...
Just slap one of these babies on your E and you'll have all the trail cred of a Jeep:

 

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yo

Yes, the sunroof opens just fine. You can see 4 twist off knobs in the back of the rack, that piece of metal comes out and you can pop the sunroof up. As far as a ladder making something trail rated... i use my ladder for getting gear down and putting up snowboards and snowboard equipment. If I didnt have side steps i would have to use my ladder all the time. You definately want side steps if you have this rack. You can also buy this rack without the sunroof opening as well.
 
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