The Ultimate Mazda BT-50 accessory guide

The BT-50 hasn’t significantly changed since 2011, plus it’s a platform-share with the Ford Ranger.

Although it’s not been an exceptionally popular ute, there’s a lot of choices when it comes to Mazda BT-50 aftermarket accessories.

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Mazda has always wanted the BT-50 ute to be an owner’s ‘third space’ – somewhere that’s not quite home, not quite work, but comfortable and useful all the same. As a result, there’s a huge range of optional accessories targeted at the tradie, caravanner and camper who spend a lot of time in the ute and use it for all sorts of reasons. Towing packs and tradie fit-outs are popular on the Mazda BT-50, for that very reason.

So, for a comprehensive guide to the best Mazda BT-50 accessories, read on.

Mazda BT-50 Bullbar

For maximum frontal protection you’ll need a top-quality bullbar.

Overview: There is so much variety in bull bar design for today’s modern dual-cab utes. You no longer have to choose between an alloy or steel three-hoop bar, and the OEM options are not as ugly as they have been in the past.

The Mazda BT-50 genuine accessory bull-bar range includes steel and alloy bull bars, plus a polished alloy nudge bar, all of which can be accessorised individually or as part of specific Dual Cab and Freestyle Cap ute packs.

From the aftermarket, the Ironman 4x4 Commercial Deluxe and Protector bull bars, which cost only a few dollars different, are good examples of modern, versatile frontal protection, including fog lights and tabs for extra accessories and a winch.

Cost: A genuine Mazda steel bullbar adds $2835 to the price of a new BT-50. A winch-compatible Commercial Deluxe bull bar from Ironman retails for about $1800, plus fitting.

Where to Buy: Mazda Genuine Accessories, Ironman 4x4

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Mazda BT-50 Nudge Bar

A nudge bar is a good compromise between having no frontal protection and a bullbar.

Overview: If you don’t need the full-frontal protection of a bull bar, but still want the capacity to fit extra lighting or an aerial, a nudge bar is an ideal touring accessory. Mazda offers a black or polished alloy version as an individual option, or as part of a Sports Touring Pack on some Dual and Freestyle cab utes, fitted with two Lightforce round driving lights. You can add a bonnet protector for extra stone-chip protection, too.

On the aftermarket, a 76mm diameter alloy tube nudge bar from East Coast Bullbars is one of the simplest and best options.

Cost: A genuine nudge bar for the BT-50 costs $1054, fitted. From ECB, expect to pay around $900.

Where to buy: Mazda BT-50 Genuine Accessories, ECB

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Mazda BT-50 Suspension Lift

Replacing the standard suspension can give you more clearance and a higher GVM.

Overview: Given the platform-share with the Ford Ranger, what’s applicable for one is generally suitable for the other. A 40-50mm suspension lift for the Mazda BT-50 is very common, and can often incorporate a GVM increase of up to 300kg, which is great if you’re carrying a load or towing a large caravan. If you want to go higher, a 50-75mm suspension lift is possible, although that involves fitting a front diff dropper and fitting new control arms, so is a lot more expensive.

Cost: For a simple suspension lift, budget around $1300 for parts, plus fitting. Include a GVM increase and expect to pay $2500 to $5000. For a 50-75mm lift, kits start at around $3300.

Where to buy: ARB, VMN

Mazda BT-50 wheels, rims and tyres

There are some good-looking rims for the BT-50 on the aftermarket.

Overview: The BT-50 Hi-Rider and 4x4 range are specified with two different tyre-and-rim packages. The lower-spec models feature 255/70 R16 tyres on alloy rims, while GTR and up get 265/65 R17 tyres on alloy rims, which are slightly larger in diameter. If you are looking for aftermarket rims for your BT-50, look for those with a 6x139.7 PCD and 55mm offset. A slightly smaller offset, say 45mm, will widen the vehicle’s stance slightly.

Cost: A new set of steel rims will cost around $250 a wheel. For alloys, budget at least $350 a rim.

Where to buy: Mazda Genuine Accessories, King Wheels.

Mazda BT-50 canopy

Want to turn your dual cab into a quasi-wagon? Get a canopy.

Overview: When utes were just a vehicle to transport your pigs to market, and attend Sunday church service, no one needed a cover the load area. But now they’re used for everything from school drop-offs to mine-site deliveries, keeping the stuff in the back dry, clean and secure is far more important. Canopies range in simplicity from a simple steel frame, and canvas cover to an extensive, custom made fit-out with a place for everything.

The Ultimate Mazda BT-50 accessory guide

Cost: Add a genuine Mazda canopy to your BT-50 from $4082. An ARB Classic Canopy retails for $2701. For a custom made, highly specific off-road touring canopy, budget around $20,000, including the tray.

Where to buy: Mazda Genuine Accessories, ARB, Norweld

Mazda BT-50 tonneau cover

Need to keep the kids’ stuff dry? A tonneau is the best bet.

Overview: If your needs aren’t so complex that you need to choose between sliding or lifting windows, but just want to keep the tray secure or weatherproof, a tonneau cover is the way to go. Add a tub liner if you want to prevent your gear scratching up the tray.

Cost: Genuine Mazda tonneau covers begin at $850. A hard version that’ll fit around the sports bar tops out at $3200.

Where to buy: Mazda Genuine Accessories

Mazda BT-50 ladder rack

To carry anything longer than the tray, you need a ladder rack.

Overview: When you’re continually carrying things longer than the Mazda BT-50 tray – be that ladders, timber or stand-up paddleboards, a ladder rack is an ideal solution. A ladder rack could be as simple as a single hoop at the rear of the tray combined with some roof racks over the cab, or a more specified solution that’s made for your situation.

Cost: Mazda includes a ladder rack as part of its genuine options for the BT-50, and that’ll add $890 to the cost of a new ute. Alternatively, the OzRoo Universal Tub Rack is a modular solution that’ll put your Ikea-building skills to the test, but can carry 400kg of load and fits most trays – they’re $700.

Where to buy: Mazda Genuine Accessories, OzRoo

Mazda BT-50 dual battery system

If you need auxiliary batteries, use a DC-DC charger for the best results.

Overview: Whether you need to charge tools in the tray at a worksite or keep a fridge and camp lights running while out in the bush, an auxiliary battery system is essential. Mazda offers a factory-fitted option with a tray mount battery cradle, although it’s battery capacity is limited by the cradle size, so consider something from the aftermarket.

The best bet is a DC-DC charger, like the Redarc BC-DC25 or Projecta IDC-25, tray-mounted 120ah (or larger) battery, with provision for solar input. That way you can run an inverter, fridge or any other high-draw accessory without risking the starting battery.

Cost: The Redarc BC-DC25 starts at $609.10. The Projecta IDC25 retails for around $300.

Mazda BT-50 drawers

Drawers add storage versatility to your ute set-up.

Overview: If you need the organisational nous of a purpose-built canopy, but don’t quite have the budget, a good set of drawers is the next-best option. The home handyman should be able to knock up a set himself in a weekend if he’s good at long cuts with a circular saw. Otherwise, many great drawers, made in Australia, can be bought off-the-shelf or customised to suit your needs. Two notable companies are Drifta in Gloucester, NSW, or OffRoad Systems in Sydney.

Cost: A dual drawer system for a dual-cab tub tray from Drifta begins at $1845, but can be customised to your heart’s content. From ORS, a 1030mm long twin drawer system (Mazda BT-50 dual cab tray size) starts at $1800, plus $150 for fitting. Neither fit with a tub-liner, so don’t order one with your new ute if you intend on adding drawers.

Where to buy: OffRoad Systems and Drifta

Mazda BT-50 snorkel

There’s nothing more reassuring than a decent snorkel when you really need it.

Overview: Snorkels are a great accessory if you’re planning some extended outback touring or do a lot of 4WDing that involves crossing creeks and rivers.

A snorkel provides clean air from above the dust cloud on a dirt track.

Lifting the air intake to roof height, it prevents water from being sucked into the engine and generally reduces the amount of dust that needs to be filtered out on dirt roads.

Cost: A factory-fitted snorkel will set you back $810.

Where to buy: Mazda Genuine Accessories

Mazda BT-50 tow bar

If you plan on towing a larger load, you’ll need to fit electric brakes.

Overview: The BT-50 can tow 3500kg, and with its power and torque figures, has become a very popular tow-tug for caravans around the country. Mazda offers a specific Boss Touring Pack on new vehicles, which includes all the goodies a caravanner needs, including tow bar, electric brakes, nudge bar and driving lights and a canopy. If you just need the tow bar kit, that includes the bar, ball and wiring, but you’ll need to add an electric brake controller.

Mazda’s OEM solution is a rebranded version of the Redarc Tow-Pro Elite, which is the best kit on the market. For more off-road specific towing needs, look into the Hayman Reese X-Bar, which improves rear departure angle and includes rated recovery points, and is a less expensive option for those who might be considering a Mazda BT-50 rear bar.

Cost: The Sports Touring Pack adds $8,773 to the cost of a new ute. A tow bar kit will add $1,150, while a brake controller costs $701. The Hayman Reese X-Bar retails for around $1400, plus fitting.

Where to buy: Mazda Genuine Accessories, Hayman Reese

Mazda BT-50 towing mirrors

Overview: Towing mirrors are essential if your rear vision is hindered by the trailer you are towing. The most comprehensive solution is replacement, telescoping mirrors by the likes of Clearview, which integrate with the OEM electric controls for the mirror orientation.

If your budget and needs don’t stretch to a full-time solution, clip-on door-mirrors are great, but avoid the ones that clip only to your mirror unless you like the mirrors being slammed into your window every time a truck goes past.

Cost: The Clearview Mirrors for a current BT-50 will cost $745. Coast Door Mount Mirrors cost $140.

Where to buy: Clearview, Outback Equipment

Mazda BT-50 side steps

Genuine side steps are only available for the Dual and Freestyle cabs.

Overview: Need an easier step up into the high-riding BT-50 cabin, or a platform to stand on when tying things down to the roof-racks? A good set of side-steps are in order.

If you need underbody protection for off-road driving though, look into something that’ll act as a rock slider and can support the weight of the vehicle if it makes contact with large rocks. Consider a bash plate for further underbody protection, if you also think sliders will be useful.

Cost: OEM side steps for the BT-50 begin at $711, but aren’t available on the single cab models. For something with a bit more off-road credibility look into the ARB Protection Steps for the Dual and Freestyle cabs at $1491 fitted.

Where to buy: Mazda Genuine Accessories, ARB

Mazda BT-50 driving lights and headlight upgrades

More light at night is easy to come by for the Mazda BT-50.

Overview: All BT-50 models are fitted with halogen headlight globes, so an LED headlight conversion can help gain a bit of brightness and clarity in the dark. LED replacement globes from companies like Stedi are a popular, and inexpensive option.

For even more light at night, Mazda offers an LED driving-light option fitted to the bull bar or nudge bar. From the aftermarket, the Narva Ultima 215s are high-performance lights that are too bright in the suburbs, but perfect in the bush. For a more suburban friendly light, the Narva Ultima 175 is just about perfect. If traditional driving lights aren’t the look you’re after, there’s a vast range of light bars available too.

Cost: The Stedi globes will set you back a modest $150. The Narva Ultima 215 LED lights retail for around $500 each light, while a set of Ultima 175 LED lamps will cost about $500.

Where to buy: Mazda Genuine Accessories, Narva, Stedi