Choosing the best bike rack can be tough. Bicycles are the most convenient form of transportation. Not only do we ride on bicycles for outdoor fun, some people cycle to work or to school everyday.
It’s the cheapest transport and the most environmentally friendly form of travel you should consider if you’re thinking of saving on fuel and going green!
But if you want to enjoy your bike in the great outdoors while you’re camping, you need to consider a rack for your vehicle that will take care of all your needs.
Traveling by bicycle can be light and easy, but bikers need a good bike rack to easily transport the bike with them wherever they go.
After so many years of riding on these bicycles, we took a few of these bike racks for a try and here’s our review of a few you should consider in your hunt for finding the best hitch bike rack for your vehicle.
Types of Bike Racks
There are few different kinds of bike racks to choose from, depending on the make of your vehicle. Whether it’s for the trunk or hatchback, we look at the three different types of bike rack:
- Hitch-mounted: this type of bike rack is more on the pricey side because its well-designed, has easy to load and unload specs, and it is a popular choice for most bike enthusiasts.
It allows one-handed fitting and is usually very sturdy. It’s tied behind the vehicle so there are no negative effects on the fuel consumption.
- Roof-mounted: roof-mounted bike racks can be attached to the roof of your car with accessories. Some may need the removal of the front wheel of your bike for it to fit, while some require both wheels to be removed.
If you drive an SUV, you may consider a roof-mounted bike rack that can easily transport your bike, as it is easy to lock the bike safely to your vehicle, and it’s usually very sturdy to be able to support the weight of the bike.
- Trunk-mounted: this can be the most pricey choice and also the least secure. This option requires the use of a lot of straps to tie around the bike on the rack and attach it on your vehicle’s trunk or bumper or hatchback.
Most trunk-mounted bike racks are adjustable but a disadvantage here would be that they’re also easily stolen because they’re the least secure.
When it comes to finding a bike rack that fits your style, the type you get is only the first step.
There are other considerations you need to take into account as well, such as :
- Bike frame: bicycles aren’t all built the same, with various frames and shapes that make it important to determine the kind of rack that you get. Look for racks that are more universal and capable of handling a wider variety of bike frames.
- Security: because of how expensive bikes can be, mounting them on the exterior of your car is just asking for a theft to take place.
A bike rack that has foolproof security provides you with the peace of mind you need to go about your day without having to worry about whether your bike is still there or not.
Top Product Review
With years of experience, we overhauled the features of the different bike racks and for outdoor enthusiasts and fellow bikers, we hope these product reviews will be helpful in helping to choose a great bike rack for your outdoor activities.
The products we’ve chosen for review are some of the best products that we think may be suitable for your trips.
Especially when you need a good bike rack to transport that bike of yours, you’ll need a stable and good quality bike rack that would not make the bike fall off. For safety and security reasons, we have found a few bike racks that we think are good choices.
Thule T2 Pro XT Bike Rack
Weight: 61.4 pounds
Dimensions: 53 x 13 x 15 inches
Product features: tool-free installation, HitchSwitch lever, integrated cable lock and receiver lock, one-key system, suits wheels that are 20-29” in diameter, fits 5”-thick wheels without adapters.
Description: The premium bike rack Thule T2 Pro XT Bike Rack is great for cycling uphill and downhill. It is easy to install as it has a tool-free AutoAttach system. Bikers can fold it up easily when not using the bike for storage.
It can be secured with an integrated cable lock and a lock knob. Users can adjust the spacing to their level of comfort. We recommend this premium bike rack for those who are going mountain biking as it comes with 20-29” wheels that are fit for the purpose.
This bike rack extend is great as it is easy to use and bikers would love the integrity of function as it is able to hold securely to prevent the bike from falling off and its built-in security to deter theft.
It has an amazing design that we think most bikers would love, advance and consists of an anti-wobble mechanism. For bikers who are thinking of upgrading their bike racks, the easy-to-use Thule T2 Pro XT Bike Rack would be a good choice.
Kuat Racks NV 2.0 Bike Rack
Weight: 63 pounds
Dimensions: 37 x 10 x 23 inches
Product features: adjustable front tire cradle system, with optional foot assistance, fully integrated cable locks along with a Trail Doc included, available in both 2” and 1.25” hitch sizes. Also fits 20” to 29” tires.
Description: Some say that it’s quite impossible to find the perfect bike rack, but Kuat Racks NV 2.0 Bike rack will prove you wrong. This amazing bike rack features an all-new pivot system that provides assistance to the feet, so bikers can lower the rack without having to lean the bike against anything.
It has front tire ratchet design with intuitive release and also a rear tire strap that features co-molded strap for the protection of the wheels. It has a hitch lock included. It holds wheelbases up to 48” and tires as large as 4.8” with the use of the phat bike kit (sold separately).
It also comes with an adjustable cradle that would be great for your longer wheel bikers or fat bikes. It has an advanced design that has an easy-to-grip handle. All you have to do is pull the handle and then swing the arm up and down. It also takes less time to install because it uses a side locking pin that is self-guiding.
In terms of security, it uses a locking hitch pin that goes all the way through the receiver so it is better and more convenient to slide in and just lock.
It’s very versatile, you can adjust the height of the front tire cup. The overall finish and appearance is eye-catching with an anodized grey and copper colored finish.
Kuat Trio Rack
Weight: 11.55 pounds
Dimensions: 4 x 10 x 59 inches
Product features: integrated cable lock, optional adapter, features 3-way fork mount system and comes with sliding rear tire strap. The forks are sold separately (QR, Thru-Axle, Boost Thru-Axle).
Description: The Kuat Trio Rack will be able to handle your bikes like no other bike rack could.
The Kuat Trio Rack features a 3-way fork mount system and an advanced security system and design with rugged good looks. It also features a black and polished chrome finish.
It mounts to most factory- and all aftermarket-cross bars. It has a sliding rear tire strap and measures up to 4 feet between cross bars.
This rack works with quick release axles and it’s the best solution for your fork mounting if you prefer to have the front wheel off. While driving on the highway, you would want stability, this rack will be able to carry your downhill bikes which are properly secured to its features, and users can easily remove the rear wheel strap.
It is well made and the lock cable in the rear of the tray is a nice touch, a great minimalist approach to taking your bike along with you on your trips!
Yakima Products Hold Up Tray Style Bike Rack
Weight: 62 pounds
Dimensions: 45 x 14 x 15 inches
Product features: StrongArm design, beefed-up arm pivot for strength, side-to-side adjustability. Holds up to two bikes and accommodates carbon road bikes.
Description: This Yakima Hold Up Tray Style bike rack will be your road trip companion for life.
As Yakima’s fastest easiest way to load bikes, the Yakima Products Hold Up Tray Style Bike Rack features a StrongArm design and a beefed-up arm pivot for strength and side-to-side adjustability.
It holds as well as disc brakes, thru axles and full suspension bikes.
It’s the fastest and easiest way for you to load your bikes as it comes with an integrated system, well-built and fits any bike securely without any movement.
You can just slip the bike in and lock the pin and hand-tighten the ball with a knob to secure it and keep the bike from moving around.
It is easy to assemble and its strong advantage here is its adjustability, which eliminates conflicts between the handlebars and the seats. It is very easy to load and unload, whether they’re road bikes or mountain bikes with full suspension.
The rack folds up closer to the back of the vehicle when not in use and also folds down to gain access to the hatch door when the bikes are on the rack. The hitch connection is great and build nicely to secure the bike.
Weight: 6.1 pounds
Dimensions: 3 x 4.5 x 51 inches
Product features: secured lock system, compatible with disc and standard brake systems. It holds skinny road tires to 2.7-inch mountain bike tires.
Description: The RockyMounts Jetline is sleek and sturdy, very low profile and does not add any extra noise when traveling on low or highway speeds. With this rack, your bikes are very secure with no wobble.
It is simple to use and it is constructed with great quality materials that are sure to last. It is able to hold just any bike but you will have to remove the front wheel.
It offers secure attachment and is able to hold bikes that measures at a standard 9mm. You can easily install it, load or unload it.
It is durable and versatile. Its lever action is smooth and secure, and takes just minutes to set up! It is also available in a wide selection of contemporary colors so you can choose the color you like to go with your car.
Yakima Forklift Fork Mount Rooftop Bike Rack
Weight: 9.45 pounds
Dimensions: 6 x 6 x 54 inches
Product features: easy-to-adjust sliding wheel tray that fits a wide range of bike lengths and comes with a Limited Lifetime Warranty.
Description: The Yakima Forklift Fork Mount Rooftop Bike Rack is the best fork mount style rooftop rack as it mounts to factory cross bars and features a skewer mechanism that is easily tightened and locked with just one hand, while you can just leave your other hand free to hold the bike steady.
Its Yakima SKS locks are sold separately. It features a simple tool-free installation and removal. The Yakima Forklift Fork Mount Rooftop Bike Rack features a simple tool-free installation and ease of removal.
It is a more secured way to mount the bike as the rack can hold the bike very well. It does not take long to install and it has great adjustability.
The stability is usually dependent on the quality of the fork clamp and the rear wheel tied down, however, Yakima Forklift Fork Mount Rooftop Bike Rack is considerably easy to use and it can support the rear wheel of the bike very well.
If you’re looking for a safe and secure bike rack, do add this to your list of choices. It keeps your bike pristine, not touching any painted surface while holding your bike with full support.
Thule ThruRide Fork Mount Carrier
Weight: 6.1 pounds
Dimensions: 3.5 x 6 x 53 inches
Product features: fits 12mm to 20mm thru-axles and 9mm quick release hubs, ergonomic precision dial, fits roof racks with 20 x 20mm T-tracks and 23 x 30 mm T-tracks. It also fits SquareBar and Factory Racks.
Description: Thule’s ThuRide Fork Mount Carrier fits a wide range of thru-axle diameters with its low profile tray design that fits just any bike perfectly. The Thule ThruRide Fork Mount Carrier features a one-handed throw-hood design.
Besides that, it also features an advanced D-shape tray design. It’s a great bike rack that is easy to install and is both easy to load and unload your bikes from.
The bikes stay in place during travel. Users can easily lock their bike without having to worry about the stability and whether it would fall off as it has a secured lock system that will provide good support for holding the bike.
It is a nice and solid looking bike carrier and it does not create air noise. It’s a perfect fit for a 15mm thru axle bike.
Saris Freedom 2 Bike Tray Hitch Rack
Weight: 25 pounds
Dimensions: 48 x 11.5 x 8.8 inches
Product features: ratcheting anti-sway straps, carries up to two bikes, protective rubber holders. The hitch lock is sold separately.
Description: The Saris Freedom 2 Bike Tray Hitch Rack is a well-designed rack that makes loading and transporting bikes easy. The Saris Freedom 2 Bike Tray Hitch Rack features a revolutionary bar design. It secures the bike perfectly and fits a wheelbase up to 48” right out of the box.
The ratcheting straps will keep your bike secured and fit without sliding off so you can easily transport it with no worries.
For those who own bikes with longer wheel base, we suggest that you purchase a long wheelbase bar which is sold separately. The receiver adapter works fantastic and have no play in it at all. It is easy to screw the pin into it.
Once tightened down with a box wrench, it becomes snug and will stay in place. Whether you’ll be needing a rack for a mountain bike or to transport your bikes with cars, if you’re looking for a durable, easy to install, easy to use, lightweight and stable, affordable rack, the Saris Freedom 2 Bike Tray Hitch Rack is the ideal choice.
Finding a bike rack that suits your needs doesn’t have to be a difficult endeavor. Knowing your bike’s specifics, as well as how you want to mount it on your vehicle, can help you to make the decision that much easier.
And if you’re still in doubt after reading this article, don’t be afraid to ask for assistance in helping you to choose the right one. It will save you a lot of hassle in the future.
We hope that after reading this article, you will be able to decide on which bike rack to purchase. If you have any questions, or ideas that you’d like to share with us, comment below! We’ll love to hear your thoughts!