Bike riding is an amazingly fun, healthy and rewarding hobby. Taking it to the next level, on the other hand, requires that your car gets involved. Doing so means that you need a bike rack that will secure your back while traveling. In this article, let us take a look at some of the best bike racks and carriers for cars and trucks.
1. Swagman CHINOOK Hitch Mount Bike Rack
The Chinook hitch mount form Swagman is an affordable option that is ideal for lighter use. It offers a nice range of adjustability and can also fit a wide range of sizes of wheels, bikes and tire widths. This model also features a locking hitch pin with locking claims, ensuring an added security.
In terms of everyday use, this model performs quite well. Even though it may lack the convenience offered by other expensive models, but it generally works well with the trunk doors of other cars. It is also easy to use, thanks to its low loading height, and simple clamp system.
Conclusion: All in all, the Swagman Chinook mount is a decent bike rack, available at a very affordable price. It is quite easy to use, offering a wide range of adjustability, allowing it to fit a range of bike sizes, tire widths, and wheels.
2. Tyger Auto TG-RK4B102B Deluxe 4-Bike Carrier Rack
The Tyger Deluxe bike rack makes it easy to carry up to 4 bikes at the same time. Its beautiful design will surely enhance the looks of your vehicle. Aside from looks, this rack holds quite well in terms of performance.
It is also equipped with security features that make it safe from thieves. As such, this rack is an amazing travel accessory if you need something to transport your bike to a different location without worrying about convenience.
Conclusion: Even though aesthetics is not a huge deciding factor, the beautiful design of this model is something that you cannot really ignore. This rack features dual-arm construction and a single supporting center mast. If you are searching for an affordable model that is sturdy and mess-free, this is a good option for you.
3. Saris Bones 2-Bike Trunk Rack
The Saris Bones 2 Bike is easily adjustable, lightweight trunk rack that stays put quite well. You can easily adjust the position of the arms without tools. This is made possible by its center spline design, along with the mounts that accommodate narrow and wide top tubes.
Since it is a trunk rack, you may not be able to carry a curvy full-suspension bike, though its narrow profile of the mounts and arms may still allow some options. The metal clips are filled with nylon, which means that it will also provide protection to your car against scratch.
Conclusion: Once this rack is mounted, it stays in place way better compared to other trunk rack models. Its stability is one of its advantages and is made possible by its side traps, halting any lateral movement when it is tightened. Despite its lightweight, it is rock solid when used.
4. BV Bike Bicycle Hitch Mount Rack Carrier for Car Truck SUV
This model comes with several amazing features. One of them is its tilt-back design which allows users to open the rear gates without the need to detach the hitch rack. It can also be folded up easily when not in use.
With its safety reflector feature, it includes a rear safety reflector that will enhance visibility, making sure that you can still anticipate safety while driving at night.
Conclusion: No doubt that this BV bike rack offers the most hassle-free way of transporting your bikes. Every bike is safely secured with its three-point connection system, one vertical arm on top and two tray-style arms located on the bottom. With this hitch rack, you can easily carry your bikes anywhere you want.
5. Kuat Racks Sherpa 2.0-2 Bike Rack
This model is an amazing tray-style hitch mount bike rack which comes with a lightweight and simple design. It is also equipped with some smart features, such as the foot lever tilt release that further enhances ease of use.
One thing that buyers love about this model is its affordability. Even though it may lack adjustability compared with others, it retains its pleasant design.
Conclusion: All in all, the Sherpa bike rack is a lightweight model that comes with some really nice features, along with a beautiful powder coat finish.
6. Hollywood Racks Sport Rider Bike Rack for Electric Bikes
The Sport Rider bike rack is specially designed for electric bikes. It has the capacity to carry up to two electric bikes with up to 3-inch wide tires and up to a 60-inch wheelbase. The maximum capacity per bicycle is at 80 lbs.
As for a safety feature, this model comes with a locking bike frame hooks and includes keyed alike locking hitch pin. The rack can be folded flat against the car when not in use, tilting down for easy transport.
Conclusion: If you are searching for a rack that is designed particularly to carry electric bikes, keeping it safe, this Sport Rider rack is a good option to consider. It can carry up to 2 bikes, securing them right in place.
7. Bell Right up Bike Platform Hitch Rack
The Bell Right up bike platform hitch rack can easily carry up to three bikes, ranging from 12 inches to 29 inches. It comes with new trays that can accommodate tires which are up to 4 inches in width. It is very easy to store when not in use. This model offers a maximum of 35 lbs. per bike.
Conclusion: If you need to transport multiple bikes all at once, this model offers the amazing capacity of carrying up to 3 bikes. Despite its bulk, it is very easy to store, especially when not in use. It even uses new trays that can easily accommodate new tires.
8. Allen Sports 3-Bike Hitch Racks
This rack comes with a locking hitch insert that fits either 1 1/4 inch or 2 inches of receiver hitches. The quick install hitch secures and tightens easily the rack inside of the receiver hitch, which also includes two keys. The arms can be folded out of the way when not in use, and the rack can be tilted back when required.
Conclusion: This model is a preferred option because it can accommodate a wide variety of bicycle frame designs quite easily. It also looks good, given its black powder coated finish. With security features at hand, there is no need to worry about your bikes.
9. Saris Superclamp 4 Ex
This model features a four-bike tray, while still maintaining sturdiness, given that it is a 63- pound rack which can easily be moved around. For easy access, it can be titled up and down and equipped with an easy-to-reach lever. It also comes with elevated rails that prevent handlebar conflict even with wide bars.
Conclusion: This rack is praised because of its unparalleled utility and compactness. Since it comes in shorter stature, it does not lack rear visibility, especially when not in use and folded up. When it is used and loaded with bikes, it is easier to remove in parking lots.
10. Yakima – HighRoad Rooftop Upright Bike Mount
Among the interesting features of this model include a new integrated TorqueRight knob that easily and quickly secures the bike with complete precision. This model needs no wheel removal, making no contact with the bike frame. This is a perfect option for carbon fiber bikes and custom paint jobs.
Conclusion: If you need a bike rack that is sleek, this is the option to go for. It is a tool-free and universal mounting rack that fits most roof racks. Aside from affordability, it offers amazing durability and sturdiness that you would look for in a bike rack.
How to Choose the Best Bike Racks and Carriers
In order to choose the right bike rack and carrier for your needs, a number of factors can be taken into consideration:
Reason for Use
One key to selecting the right bike track is knowing what your needs are, and the purpose of use. This means the need to assess your current vehicle. Among the things that you need to look into includes how often you will use it, the number of bikes that need to be transported, the need to change vehicles, the amount that you are willing to spend, the importance of security, other accessories, including a rear-mounted spare tire which will interfere with specific types of mounts.
Bike racks usually fall into three different types: roof racks, hitch-mount racks, and strap-on trunk racks. Each of these rack types come with good and bad points, though not are all available for all vehicles. Let us take a look at these types:
Roof mounted racks usually attach to the existing roof of a vehicle. Some, though use mounting feet and clips which attach to the upper door frame or rain gutters of a vehicle. The overall cost is reduced if you already have a roof rack or crossbars on your vehicle.
One downside to this type is that it can be complicated to install. Your vehicle may also not be able to go to parking garages with low clearance. Lifting your bike on a high vehicle can also be challenging, which may result in scratches on the roof or sides of your car.
Hitch mount racks usually come in different sizes in order to match the hitch or class of your vehicle. Class 1 hitches have 1.25-inch openings which are ideal for most cars. Class III hitches have 2-inch openings and are generally used on truck-based SUVs and pickups. Your actual choice may depend on the number of bikes that need to be transported.
A downside, however, is that it can be an additional expense to your trailer hitch, especially if your vehicle does not have one. Your bikes may also be damaged because of backing into something, or just by getting hit from behind.
Strap-on Trunk Racks
Strap-on trunk mounts are considered as the least expensive among all bike carrier choices out there. The straps are attached to the frame attach of the carrier, and into the car’s trunk, rear bumper or hatchback. They usually carry at least one or two, even three at times.
A downside of using strap-on trunk racks includes the possibility of blocking the driver’s view out of the rear window. The straps may also cut easily, thus jeopardizing the security of the racks. Also, extra attachments may also be required to support bikes that are odd-framed.
The model and style of rack that you choose highly depend on different factors. If you do not have any particular needs, a standard design may suit you better. A lot of options are currently available in the market, including the ones that are mentioned above. Start with listing the features that you would like to see, and compare them with the features that are listed in each option.