The Five Best Hitch-Mounted Bike Racks

Hitch-mounted bike racks are uncomplicated to load, simply because there is no have to have to hoist your ride onto your car’s roof, and they carry bikes by the wheels (not the body), reducing possible for damage in transit. There is a good deal of elements to consider when choosing from the finest choices obtainable for transporting your wheels with relieve. Here’s 5 of the finest new hitch-mounted bike racks on the current market.

Thule Helium

What It Is: A a single- or two-bike rack that holds your bike(s) by the tires and doesn’t touch the bike’s body. The rack sits larger than some other hitch racks. To safe a bike, aluminum arms fold in from both facet and press down onto tire rubber. A button on the take care of of each individual arm releases that facet of the rack when you are all set to unload. Each bike mount has an built-in theft-deterring cable lock. And, the rack is speedy and uncomplicated to mount to the vehicle.

Thule Helium Platform hitch bike rackWhy We Enjoy It: Bikes are pricey, making a platform rack that doesn’t touch the body beautiful. Also, simply because the rack closes from both equally sides, it can make offsetting bikes less complicated than on other racks. It folds down a single-handed for uncomplicated trunk obtain. At forty three pounds, it’s also a single of the lighter hitch racks obtainable, even though nevertheless sturdy and suited for tough road driving. And, it’s uncomplicated to assemble with integrated equipment.

Thule Helium platformDisadvantages: This rack matches tight to the vehicle, and in some conditions, that in good shape may well was much too tight with no a hitch extender. Thule has a web-site website page devoted to enable ascertain if the rack will in good shape your vehicle. I was not ready to install it on a Toyota Sienna minivan with no an extender, but it did in good shape on a Toyota RAV4 with the mounts tight to the bumper. The rack carries two bikes, max—there’s not now an possibility to broaden it to three or four bikes. The rack can not carry bikes with wheels scaled-down than 26 inches. It’s also not rated for e-bikes. Max recommended excess weight for every bike is 37.5 pounds.

Extras: Compatible with Thule’s Access swingarm, which rotates the rack away from the trunk making obtain even less complicated. Also obtainable in a single bike variation.

[$699 (two-bike rack),]

Dovetail Ferst

What It Is: Manufactured by an pro in lean manufacturing, this 12-pound (a single bike) to 14-pound (double) rack is the lightest hitch rack you can purchase. The rack holds bikes by the crank—a bike carry system preferred with tour operators. A plastic assistance at the top rated of the crank boot flips to seat flawlessly in between the non-driveside crank and the body. And a plastic sleeve inside the boot shields carbon cranks as well as aluminum kinds from scratches. With the crank inside the boot, a twist knob secures the bike. And a Velcro strap wraps the front wheel to a half-tray for equilibrium.

Dovetail Ferst Rack
courtesy Dovetail

Why We Enjoy It: Just one of the largest limitations to utilizing a hitch rack is the excess weight. This rack can be taken off the vehicle in considerably less than a moment with the integrated equipment, then picked up a single-handed and stashed on a shelf, in your trunk, or anyplace else. Since Dovetail Ferst holds bikes by the cranks, it’s nearly common. Setup was speedy and uncomplicated simply because there have been few elements. And whilst it doesn’t fold, in numerous months of use, that was not a hardship. With the rack mounted on a swing arm, I experienced total trunk obtain.

Dovetail ferst road bike hitch mounted rackDisadvantages: Dovetail Ferst’s internet site is in development, and it doesn’t now have the total vary of products, so connect with the corporation with thoughts, such as which base bracket assistance (or supports) you have to have. The assistance that arrived with the rack was great for mountain bikes, but I essential a distinctive assistance for gravel bikes. Product sales are immediate-to-purchaser only, so you can not wait in a shop and check out out this rack. No lock integrated, even though a Masterlock Python will both equally safe rack to hitch, and bikes to rack.

Extras: Coming soon—Dovetail’s routine maintenance kit that allows you equilibrium your bike by its base bracket with the front wheel secured for on-the-road bike cleansing and routine maintenance. Also coming soon, trays for extra fat tire bikes, and Voile-type straps for these who never have confidence in Velcro.

[$375 (two-bike rack),]


Kuat NV 2.

What It Is: An eye-catching, contemporary a single- or two-bike rack that converts to a three- or four-bike rack with the addition of extra mounts. Each mount can assistance a 60-pound bike, and the rack is effective for bike wheels from twenty to 29 inches (twenty- and 24-inch bikes require an adapter). Furthermore, Kuat has a well considered-out vary of add-ons to make utilizing and storing this rack person-helpful.

Kuat NV 2.0 fold-down hitch-mounted bike rackWhy We Enjoy It: A whole lot of racks sort of glance the similar. This a single is distinctive and right away recognizable. Since bike wheels relaxation on supports, not in trays, there is no have to have to swap trays if you determine to carry a extra fat bike instead of a road bike. The rack feels flawlessly sized for each bike. And it will come in two hues, one thing other racks never offer you. The wheel supports are adjustable, so you can set it up to make absolutely sure bikes nest well. Built-in locks are sturdy adequate we experienced self-assurance leaving an pricey bike secured only with the rack’s cable. A foot/hand lever allows you fold or reduce the rack a single-handed. We enjoy the lifetime guarantee, much too.

Kuat NV 2.0 add-onDisadvantages:  You both start out with a two-bike rack and increase a single extra mount or two. There is no foundation device that allows you increase a single to four mounts, this means there is no single bike possibility. The NV 2. is a beast at 56 pounds for the two-bike rack and 91 pounds for the four bike rack. Repositioning bike supports will take fiddling to get bikes to nest. The rack matches 2-inch receivers only.

Extras: This rack will come with two mounts that can be expanded to three or four. The rack is obtainable with or with no an built-in bike stand. Kuat also sells the RackDock, a wall-mounted receiver that holds your rack for storage. Kuat’s HiLow Professional has an updated hitch cam and redesigned lock. And Kuat’s swing away is yet another way to get on your own place to get into your trunk.

[$689 (two-bike rack),]

Yakima HangOver

What It Is: A vertical hitch rack that hangs up to six bikes in about the similar place that a two bike tray rack will take up on your bumper. The rack will come in four- and six-bike configurations. Bikes hang by the crown of their suspension forks. They are secured with a strap at the top rated and a strap close to the again wheel

Yakima's vertical HangOver hitch rack bike racks
Yakima’s vertical HangOver hitch rack holds up to six bikes. courtesy Yakima

Why We Enjoy It: Large family members and friends who like to shuttle will enjoy this rack. A foot-tilt lever allows you angle it away from the vehicle for loading and for trunk obtain. The rack has two mast heights, allowing you to change it so the rear tires of the bikes on the rack continue to be apparent the floor, which is frequently an concern with this type of rack. Couple of racks carry six bikes. So, if you are traveling with a bigger crew, this rack is a single of the finest choices out there. A hitch lock is integrated. The fork cradle is padded so it won’t scratch mountain bike stanchions. And the rack can take care of suspension bikes of most any wheelbase.

Yakima HangOverDisadvantages: We identified it challenging to load, even with the rack decreased. It’s a cumbersome 77.sixty five pounds, so tough to control off the vehicle. The HangOver is for suspension fork bikes only. The four bike rack can not be expanded to hold six bikes. No cable locks are integrated.

Extras: Yakima can make loads of rack add-ons. The four bike HangOver is compatible with the company’s BackSwing.

[$599 (four-bike rack),]


Lolo Racks Lolo Rack

What It Is: A significant-obligation, vertical rack that matches nearly any auto with a 2-inch hitch receiver, this Portland, OR-produced rack holds bikes by their handlebars. It carried up to 220 pounds of bikes such as six mountain bikes, four road bikes, little ones bikes and a lot more. And, it’s so burly, it feels like it’ll final a lifetime. The handlebar-holding hooks are uncomplicated to transfer with a ratchet and a wrench, so shifting the configuration as essential is a no-brainer.

Lolo Racks
courtesy Lolo Racks / Nathan Holstedt (@fullfroth)

Why We Enjoy It: If you are the person who always volunteers to push your friends to the trailhead, or who shuttles your crew to a descent, this rack is for you. It’s speedy to load, and it holds up to 250 pounds of bikes securely. Also, if you are the person who feels like other racks are flimsy, you’ve fulfilled your new bike provider. Handlebars relaxation on angled, overbuilt hook mounts, then safe at the bar and at the again wheel with oversized bungies. Lolo Rack is made from significant-obligation metal, and it felt a lot more secure than any other rack we analyzed. With the rack on your auto, there are numerous choices for how you situation it, so this rack in good shape vehicles that other racks did not. We analyzed it on a Toyota Sienna minivan, a Toyota RAV4 SUV, and on a F-350 truck with a camper in the bed. Repositioning the rack to tilt more away from, or closer to, the vehicle needs moving a single bolt. And, even with bikes loaded, the rack folded down and out of the way for trunk obtain. With a ratchet and a drill, it will take seconds to transfer handlebar mounts to accommodate bikes efficiently. Lolo Racks are designed and produced by Oregon riders. And they do an extraordinary work boxing the rack compactly for shipping and delivery.

Lolo Racks
courtesy Lolo Racks / Nathan Holstedt (@fullfroth)

Disadvantages: It was a lot more intricate to assemble this rack than other individuals we analyzed, and assembly required a multitude of equipment. It matches a 2-inch hitch receiver only. A one.25-inch receiver can not take care of the load. And if your vehicle rides very low, a vertical rack may perhaps not be the finest choice—bike wheels can often bump the floor.

Extras: As an alternative of awkwardly storing this rack for winter, use it to haul skis and extra fat bikes at the similar time. Most ski racks can mount to the bottom of this rack to carry skis vertically. If you never bike or ski in winter, consider mounting this rack to your garage wall and storing bikes on the rack to lower garage muddle. Lolo Rack sells DH-precise handlebar hooks for transporting twin crown fork bikes.


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