researching car racks for ebikes

#1
My husband and I just bought two Trek Verve+ ebikes. We love them! They are too heavy (45 lbs each) for our current flimsy bike rack, so we are researching Trailer Hitch Tray bike racks. Does anyone have an opinion about this kind of car rack that works well for their ebikes? Opinions about Thule, Yakima and others?
Thanks for Sharing
 
#2
The ones I have seen suggested most often are:

* 1up
* Kuat NV 2.0 (Court's review here)
* Thule EasyFold XT 2

I don't have any experience with the 1UP rack, but I know a lot of people seem to love it

I have the kuat and love it. Its not meant for bikes with fenders, but if you get a strap for the front wheel and place the arm in front of the fender, the bike is very secure. I use a Velcro strap I got off Amazon to secure the front wheel to the rack.

I was considering the Thule , but decided against it because it seemed like it would have more limitations with certain bikes/accessories. It needs a tube to clamp on to, so if a battery or bottle cage is in the way you can't securely clamp to it. Getting two bikes on might be a pain as well given how the outside bike clamp must be weaved through the first bike and then attach to the second.
 

mrgold35

Well-Known Member
#3
All those rack are very good choices along with Saris, Hollywood, and 1UP. I had an old hanging hitch rack and didn't want to try to use with my +60 lbs radrover fat tire ebikes. I went with a Saris Freedom Superclamp 4 2" hitch mount platform bike rack. I have a large and small SUVs with 2" hitches on both.

My small SUV recommends a Class I 1 1/4" hitch because it has only a 1500 tow rating along with 150 tongue weight hanging off the rack. I didn't want to use the 1 1/4" hitch and add an extension to covert to 2" for my Saris rack moving the weight even further back away from the hitch. I found a 2" hidden hitch from e-trailer that tucks far underneath the rear bumper. I haven't had any issues loading two radrovers on the Saris rack on my smaller vehicle. I use the large SUV if I need to take more that 2 bikes and/or a lot of gear.

Items I would double-check on are:
- tow rating and tongue weight of your vehicle(s)
- total weight of ebike(s) and max passengers and gear in vehicle (more tow/tongue weight usually means less passengers/cargo)
- type of hitch you can add to your vehicle 1 1/4" or 2"
- type of rack you have in mind like 1 1/4" or 2" AND do you need an adapter between the rack and hitch.
- tilt or swing feature for access rear of vehicle
- Rack that secures ebike on top of the tires might not work if you have full fenders (might need a rack that secures on drop tube)
- ease putting on/off the rack (aluminum racks are usually lighter, my Saris rack is 70lbs)
- built in rack locks/cables and being able to add additional locks/cable/chains for additional security

Another thing I did just to feel safer was add 4-way lights to the rear of my Saris rack because two fat tire ebikes with triangle bags and rear racks blocked the rear of the vehicle.

Saris Rack with 2 Radrovers with AUX 4 way light bottom center on my Smaller SUV.
 

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bob armani

Well-Known Member
#4
All those rack are very good choices along with Saris, Hollywood, and 1UP. I had an old hanging hitch rack and didn't want to try to use with my +60 lbs radrover fat tire ebikes. I went with a Saris Freedom Superclamp 4 2" hitch mount platform bike rack. I have a large and small SUVs with 2" hitches on both.

My small SUV recommends a Class I 1 1/4" hitch because it has only a 1500 tow rating along with 150 tongue weight hanging off the rack. I didn't want to use the 1 1/4" hitch and add an extension to covert to 2" for my Saris rack moving the weight even further back away from the hitch. I found a 2" hidden hitch from e-trailer that tucks far underneath the rear bumper. I haven't had any issues loading two radrovers on the Saris rack on my smaller vehicle. I use the large SUV if I need to take more that 2 bikes and/or a lot of gear.

Items I would double-check on are:
- tow rating and tongue weight of your vehicle(s)
- total weight of ebike(s) and max passengers and gear in vehicle (more tow/tongue weight usually means less passengers/cargo)
- type of hitch you can add to your vehicle 1 1/4" or 2"
- type of rack you have in mind like 1 1/4" or 2" AND do you need an adapter between the rack and hitch.
- tilt or swing feature for access rear of vehicle
- Rack that secures ebike on top of the tires might not work if you have full fenders (might need a rack that secures on drop tube)
- ease putting on/off the rack (aluminum racks are usually lighter, my Saris rack is 70lbs)
- built in rack locks/cables and being able to add additional locks/cable/chains for additional security

Another thing I did just to feel safer was add 4-way lights to the rear of my Saris rack because two fat tire ebikes with triangle bags and rear racks blocked the rear of the vehicle.

Saris Rack with 2 Radrovers with AUX 4 way light bottom center on my Smaller SUV.
Reference to the hidden hitch from etrailer: Purchased mine and installed in a few hours. I am very happy with it. Holding up well carrying 1-2 E-bikes. I use a SportRack with it and it is more than adequate.
 
#5
I have Thule trays that clamp the downtube, I forget what model they are... Thule 599XTR Big Mouth

I wouldn't trust them to transport any eBike, but that's just me. I'd look into strapping it down like a motorcycle, using an adjustable motorcycle wheel-chock - the kind that holds your bike up once you roll the front tire into it.
 
#6
I use a Yakima Holdup, it's rated to 27.3Kg per bike.

You can also extend it with another holder to add an additional 2 bikes.

Easy to install into the hitch. Use mine weekly transporting a Giant Trance-E 3 MTB to the local MTB park. Very easy to mount and secure the bike onto it.
 

MikeDD

Active Member
#7
I have the RockyMounts Backstage. It folds down and also swings out of the way for the hatch to open on a SUV. It will work on a Jeep Wrangler with a hitch extension. It is heavy and it is expensive. You do not have to buy different trays for 4" tires. It does have a lifetime warranty.
 

Redrock

New Member
#8
All those rack are very good choices along with Saris, Hollywood, and 1UP. I had an old hanging hitch rack and didn't want to try to use with my +60 lbs radrover fat tire ebikes. I went with a Saris Freedom Superclamp 4 2" hitch mount platform bike rack. I have a large and small SUVs with 2" hitches on both.

My small SUV recommends a Class I 1 1/4" hitch because it has only a 1500 tow rating along with 150 tongue weight hanging off the rack. I didn't want to use the 1 1/4" hitch and add an extension to covert to 2" for my Saris rack moving the weight even further back away from the hitch. I found a 2" hidden hitch from e-trailer that tucks far underneath the rear bumper. I haven't had any issues loading two radrovers on the Saris rack on my smaller vehicle. I use the large SUV if I need to take more that 2 bikes and/or a lot of gear.

Items I would double-check on are:
- tow rating and tongue weight of your vehicle(s)
- total weight of ebike(s) and max passengers and gear in vehicle (more tow/tongue weight usually means less passengers/cargo)
- type of hitch you can add to your vehicle 1 1/4" or 2"
- type of rack you have in mind like 1 1/4" or 2" AND do you need an adapter between the rack and hitch.
- tilt or swing feature for access rear of vehicle
- Rack that secures ebike on top of the tires might not work if you have full fenders (might need a rack that secures on drop tube)
- ease putting on/off the rack (aluminum racks are usually lighter, my Saris rack is 70lbs)
- built in rack locks/cables and being able to add additional locks/cable/chains for additional security

Another thing I did just to feel safer was add 4-way lights to the rear of my Saris rack because two fat tire ebikes with triangle bags and rear racks blocked the rear of the vehicle.

Saris Rack with 2 Radrovers with AUX 4 way light bottom center on my Smaller SUV.
MrGold, what brand/model of aux light did you buy to attach to your rack? I have the same issue when I place a bike cover on when towing the car/bikes behind our Motorhome.
 

mrgold35

Well-Known Member
#9
My Saris rack is made from steel; which, works very well for attaching the magnetic 4-way cargo carrier lights. I also have a 7-flat trailer plug and I use a 4-flat converter plug to connect the AUX cargo lights. I was a little worried about the AUX lights falling off by accident and added two long velcro strips to help secure it to the bike rack (can see in above picture). I've had it on my Saris rack since Oct/16 and it has worked perfectly everything I've used it.

Amazon, $80: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GR7P55A/ref=oh_aui_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Hitch Light.jpg
 
#10
My husband and I just bought two Trek Verve+ ebikes. We love them! They are too heavy (45 lbs each) for our current flimsy bike rack, so we are researching Trailer Hitch Tray bike racks. Does anyone have an opinion about this kind of car rack that works well for their ebikes? Opinions about Thule, Yakima and others?
Thanks for Sharing
i have have just brought a Yakima ,for my emtb they are well built and easy to use.
 
#11
My husband and I just bought two Trek Verve+ ebikes. We love them! They are too heavy (45 lbs each) for our current flimsy bike rack, so we are researching Trailer Hitch Tray bike racks. Does anyone have an opinion about this kind of car rack that works well for their ebikes? Opinions about Thule, Yakima and others?
Thanks for Sharing
Hello, Congratulations your recent purchase of two Trek Verve+ eBikes...Great bikes, Great company.

I also have two Trek eBikes, a Powerfly7 mtb and a XM700+ commuter so the weight is slightly heavier. I transport them all the time on a Saris Superclamp 2 .
Unfortunately it's discontinued. The replacement is the Freedom Super Clamp2. https://www.saris.com/product/superclamp-2 The beauty of this rack
is your bikes will not bang into each other.

Saris makes excellent products reasonably priced, made in the USA, Wisconsin. I love my rack. It's a snap to remove from the hitch which I do all the time.
My car is a 1993 Honda Accord. I bought my hitch online from eTrailer.com. They are great with excellent service. https://www.etrailer.com/

Good luck and enjoy your new bikes,
John
 

bob armani

Well-Known Member
#12
Hello, Congratulations your recent purchase of two Trek Verve+ eBikes...Great bikes, Great company.

I also have two Trek eBikes, a Powerfly7 mtb and a XM700+ commuter so the weight is slightly heavier. I transport them all the time on a Saris Superclamp 2 .
Unfortunately it's discontinued. The replacement is the Freedom Super Clamp2. https://www.saris.com/product/superclamp-2 The beauty of this rack
is your bikes will not bang into each other.

Saris makes excellent products reasonably priced, made in the USA, Wisconsin. I love my rack. It's a snap to remove from the hitch which I do all the time.
My car is a 1993 Honda Accord. I bought my hitch online from eTrailer.com. They are great with excellent service. https://www.etrailer.com/

Good luck and enjoy your new bikes,
John
Nice rack John!! Etrailer has all of the answers to any bike rack questions you may have. A very well informed and educated staff on board.
I have an older SportRack that I use, however, my new E-bike has 2.8 inch wide plus tires. The tire loops have a slightly smaller width, so I think my tires will not cradle inside them properly. I contacted SportRack (now owned by Thule) and they indicated that they do not have 'Replacement Wheel Loops' that they recommend, however, eTrailer sells them. They also sell Swagnan hoop replacements, however, am not sure if they will actually fit either. Last resort, I would have to purchase a whole new hitch-mounted rack. I am also not sure if reducing PSI in my tires would be a wise solution either. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
 

Alaskan

Well-Known Member
#15
I have the Thule Easyfold XT2. I just completed a two week, 3000 car mile, 320 bike mile journey too and through California with two 60+ lb. bikes on board. On the freeway at 80 mph, bumping along on back country roads, no problem.

Pros

  • holds up to 130 pounds
  • tongue expands in receiver eliminating rattles
  • tongue locks into receiver
  • fits both 1.25" & 2" receivers (includes 2"adapter)
  • clamps on any tube - clamp arm can locate anywhere on upside down U-bar - I clamp on the seat tube
  • works on bikes with or without fenders
  • The big rubber padded jaws that clamp on the tube have a tightening knob that locks
  • No easily cut cables...much more secure locking mechanism than most other with cable
  • Tilts down easily with bikes on allowing access to back of car
  • Comes with folding loading ramp (that I may end up using someday)
Cons
  • High cost
20190113_092411.jpg
 
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#16
I also have the Thule Easyfold XT2 . I like the features that it can be folded to about a size of a carry on suitcase. It has rollers so moving it to/from the car, garage, and basement with ease. I also like the foldable ramp to help place the heavy ebikes onto the carrier. It is expensive but the features are worth it for me.
 

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#18
I also have the Thule Easyfold XT2 . I like the features that it can be folded to about a size of a carry on suitcase. It has rollers so moving it to/from the car, garage, and basement with ease. I also like the foldable ramp to help place the heavy ebikes onto the carrier. It is expensive but the features are worth it for me.
Thule looks very good but I checked the price. You are right it is expensive and maybe I will consider to buy a 1up for that price. Good part about your thule is being able to store it.