Subaru Forester Owners Forum banner

Cargo Area Weight Limit?

9318 Views 5 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  jzmtl
I have recently been using my Subie more as a pickup than anything else. Was delighted to discover that by removing the front seat headrest, advancing the seat to its most forward position and fully reclining it, that I can carry 8 ft lumber with ease with the rear hatch closed

I have a project now that requires hauling bags of concrete mix, road base and other items in what the owner's manual describes as the "Cargo Area" or "Cargo Space." This is the area behind the rear seats when they are in the upright position. Nowhere in the manual or in this forum can I find the load limit for this space. I am concerned because the cargo area "floor" over the spare tire compartment appears to be styrofoam. Does anybody know what Subaru says about this or what you have experienced load-wise.
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
I haven't seen a recommendation, but you had better cover the hatch area with a sheet of plywood or an equivalent or you will destroy the flimsy rear deck.
You can safely carry weight up to the GVWR of the car, but dense weight like concrete bags concentrated only at the rear will make your steering wheels dangerously light, and overload the rear wheels, even if the total weight is under the vehicle's GVWR.

It would be a better idea to spread the load out onto a sheet over the entire rear of the car.
Probably an even better idea is to rent or borrow a vehicle designed for the task - a pickup truck - rather than messing up a new car interior...
Thanks, Dragon. This is probably what I will end up doing. And you are right to point out that the plywood should extend over "the entire rear of the car" since there is not much of a lip to support the plywood in the cargo area. Also, I am considering some type of structural bracing under the cargo "floor."

Nonetheless, this has sparked my curiosity and I would like Subaru's take, since among other things, the luggage "from she who must be obeyed" is often quite heavy.
  • Like
Reactions: 1
You should be okay if you spread the load out as mentioned above. I use my '17 Forester more as a truck as my job requires i carry stock of parts to repair copiers. I always have the rear loaded with a few hundred pounds of parts and haven't experienced any deforming of the Styrofoam bases under the cargo cover board.
@CargoSport in your Owner Manual, there should be a section on "Vehicle load limit - how to determine".

On my '07 FSXT the maximum cargo capacity is 900 pounds (load limit). Cargo capacity = Load limit - total weight of occupants + total weight of optional equipment + tongue load of a trailer, if applicable.

Of course that doesn't tell you how much weight you can place on the cargo area floor? As @DragonSubie7 suggested, a plywood cargo hauling floor might be the way to go. :wink:


['07 FSXT MODding Journal] ['03 X MODding Journal]
Someone else cut their cargo deck and found it's made of aluminum, so not as weak as you may think.

When I had to carry pavers I loaded some in passenger footwells to more evenly distribute the load among all 4 corners.
1 - 6 of 6 Posts