I have recently fitted a set of full length Aiko roof bars (4x) to my long wheel-base W639 Mercedes Vito. Ordered online from Aiko who are a British company, (North East) it was delivered next day and It fitted perfectly. The build quality is really good, of high quality constuction and all parts are plated to an excellent standard to protect it from the worst of UK weather. There are a few options regarding ladder rollers and I opted for a plain and simple protection bar. This rear bar just overhangs the rear door line of the van and offers valuable protection to the bodywork in loading and unloading long loads.
All the parts are supplied, even the fixings for the manufacturers captive fastening on the roof line. The install took just short of an hour to fit and everything mated together just as it should. This rack is custom made for the vehicle and you can tell some time has been taken to make sure fits, bends and holes are perfectly aligned in their design process. The brackets themselves are are heavy gauge steel, laser cut, bent and fillet welded for extra strength and durability. You can choose from two types of ‘U’ bolt that hold the oval profile cross bars to the brackets. The first are just a basic clamp fastening, the second has a raised profile that incorprates a good sized lashing eye for securing your load and because of the extended height these do a great job in retaining the load and preventing side-shift. The whole kit is assembled using just a 13mm and 10mm spanner.
The cross bars are of equally strong profiled steel construction and are of sufficient strength to support the heaviest of loads. You can select either traditional square section box or the slightly more ‘streamlined’ oval profile as I chose. Here is an interesting picture that demontrates the strength of Aiko roof bars, its not my van ! Link taken for the Aiko website.
Wind noise is really not too bad, I have had bar sets in the past that sing a very merry tune as you travel, these seem to produce a lowish frequency noise on the Vito, this starts at about 40mph and the level does not rise appreciably as road speed increases. Because the noise is quite low frequency, the sound is soon drowned out and becomes part of the normal road noise associated with speed, so not really annoying – top marks for that one !
Having looked for a suitable heavy duty ‘trade’ roofrack / roof bars for the Mercedes Vito over quite some time, I feel that the Aiko offering is good value for money. The set I purchased on-line was a shade over £150 for the 4 bar set as you see and this pricing compares favourably with lesser versions I looked at previously. So in my view, good value too.