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What Are Pickup Truck Roll Bars, And What Are the Different Types?

Educational  ·  May 24, 2023

What Are Pickup Truck Roll Bars, And What Are the Different Types?

Roll bars are a common feature you’ll find on many pickup trucks. People call it various names, but what they don’t realise is that these bars contribute to a truck’s safety, functionality, and appearance.

A roll bar is a metal bar running from one side to the other directly behind a truck's cabin. Its primary purpose is to protect the cabin from being crushed in an accident, but it also makes transporting cargo so much easier and adds to the vehicle's aesthetics.

There is much to discover about the roll bars on pickup trucks, which we will cover in this article. Read through to the end to learn the benefits of roll bars and the many different types.

What Is the Purpose of a Roll Bar on a Pickup Truck?

A roll bar provides added safety and prevents the cabin from being crushed if the vehicle rolls over, hence the name.

However, pickup truck and ute roll bars have evolved into multipurpose add-ons that are useful for many different reasons. 

While they primarily act as safety devices, they can also help carry additional cargo. For example, tradespeople will choose certain kinds of roll bars to help with carrying ladders, spare tyres, and other cargo.

On top of that, roll bars can also serve as attachment points for spotlights and speakers, among other electrical accessories. Roll bars designed for this purpose conceal wiring that connects the accessories to the truck’s electrical power system.

Last but certainly not least, roll bars are also part of the truck's overall aesthetic. The market is full of plain, rugged, and shiny models, to name a few categories. You can certainly find one that fits your style.

What Are the Benefits of Roll Bars?

Roll bars aren't just for show but instead offer important benefits that make them a worthwhile upgrade for any truck owner.

Here are some of the benefits of truck roll bars:

With these benefits in mind, it's no surprise that roll bars are incredibly common when it comes to trucks. They either come as standard accessories or are added by the owner.

What Are the Different Types of Roll Bars?

Pickup truck roll bars exist in all sorts of varieties. That's why it's challenging to specify how many types of roll bars exist.

Instead, you can find roll bars from different manufacturers with some combination of the following qualities:

1. Single and Multiple Bars and Legs

In its most basic form, a roll bar only consists of a single bar that runs from one side of the truck to the other, matching the shape behind the cabin. However, you can also find models with two or three bars instead.

Meanwhile, roll bars also come in different number of legs. For instance, you can get a single roll bar that mounts to the truck on one and a half or two legs.

2. Various Materials, Colours, and Finishes

Besides the bar and number of legs, you will also find roll bars made from various materials, colours and finishes. That’s an excellent lee way, as it means you can find one that matches your tastes and your truck’s design to a T.

There are countless colours to choose from, and chrome roll bars for trucks are just one of many examples of the finishes you can find on sale.

3. With Racks

Earlier, you read that some roll bars add more functionality to the truck’s exterior. That’s certainly true, and it’s also why you can find roll bars that come with additional racks. 

These racks provide more places to store your equipment, supplies, or anything else you might need to transport items safely. Read about roof racks here!

Again, features like these come in an endless variety. So you don’t have to worry about finding one that suits your needs perfectly.

4. With Side Rails

At their core, roll bars are focused on the exterior behind the truck’s cabin. However, some models extend all the way to the rear of the truck, such as those with side rails.

These side rails can offer even more functionality to the roll bar. For example, you can secure things like ladders to them.

Some also come with handrails that you can use to climb in and out of the truck bed and mount electrical accessories like the spotlights and speakers mentioned earlier.

5. With Grilles

Lastly, you can find roll bars with grilles protecting the truck’s rear window. That means the roll bar will do more than just protect the cabin from being crushed in an accident. On top of that, it’ll also help to prevent anyone from breaking into the vehicle from behind.

Roll Bar vs Roll Cage vs Anti-Roll Bar – What’s the Difference?

You might already know that many car accessories are called different things, and people use those names interchangeably. Unfortunately, that also happens in this case, as many people confuse the roll bar with the roll cage and even the anti-roll bar.

For clarification, the roll bar is just a single bar that protects the cabin’s rear from being crushed. Meanwhile, a roll cage literally forms a cage around the cabin, protecting it from all sides. You’ll often find roll cages used in racing applications to protect drivers.

An anti-roll bar – also called roll bar (sigh!) or sway bar – is nowhere near the same. Instead, the anti-roll bar is part of the vehicle’s suspension system and helps prevent rolling when the car takes sharp corners.

Can You Buy Used Roll Bars?

Yes, you can buy a used roll bar for trucks of all kinds. As you can imagine, roll bars aren’t affected by mileage, so getting one second-hand is an excellent way to save money and increase your vehicle’s safety.

Whether you’re looking for Hilux roll bars, Ford Ranger roll bars, or a Nissan Navara roll bar, you can find what you need through the CarpartAu Marketplace. Look around and find great deals on used parts!


By Ray Hasbollah

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