Hitch or trunk rack, and weight limits

Operator7

Active Member
Hi Everyone,

Well I tried the method of putting the ebike into the trunk, and while it worked for one trip, it definitely isn't practical... having said that, I'm in the market for a hitch. Here is my dilemma:

Trunk-mount racks are much cheaper; however, a 55lb bike seems like an awful lot to put onto the trunk.

Hitch-mount racks seem much more solid, but in another thread, George brought up the issue that my car has certain weight limits for the hitch. I have an Acura TSX (pictured below).

Can anyone school me on the different types of hitches that are possible to install on my car, and what weight capacity they will have?

thank you
PICT1995_zpsvtfl2rj1.jpg
 

grench

Well-Known Member
Hi Everyone,

Well I tried the method of putting the ebike into the trunk, and while it worked for one trip, it definitely isn't practical... having said that, I'm in the market for a hitch. Here is my dilemma:

Trunk-mount racks are much cheaper; however, a 55lb bike seems like an awful lot to put onto the trunk.

Hitch-mount racks seem much more solid, but in another thread, George brought up the issue that my car has certain weight limits for the hitch. I have an Acura TSX (pictured below).

Can anyone school me on the different types of hitches that are possible to install on my car, and what weight capacity they will have?

thank youView attachment 4189
http://www.etrailer.com/vm/Acura/TSX/hitch
 

Operator7

Active Member
Thanks Grench. I found this from my Acura owner's manual:

Total Trailer Weight:
The maximum allowable weight of the
trailer and everything in or on it
must not exceed 1,000 lbs (450 kg).

Tongue Load:
The weight that the tongue of a fully-loaded trailer
puts on the hitch should be approximately 10% of the total
trailer weight.


From this, my understanding is that I am limited to 100lbs total weight on the tongue of my hitch. That would seem to greatly limit my options for a hitch-mounted rack, no?
 

Operator7

Active Member
I found this, which is only 21 lbs, but not sure if it could handle the weight of an ST1 (without batter, approximately 57lbs). It says 35lbs per bike, so not sure if that is total weight for the rack, or per slot. Seems a shame to spend so much money for a hitch and then a rack, and not even be able to carry two bikes, but at this point, I'll just be happy to find a solution for one bike.

The Saris trunk-mount (https://www.rei.com/product/853367/saris-bones-2-bike-trunk-rack#tab-reviews) would be a lot cheaper... at this point, I'm wondering what is the safest, most stable option. Any advice/feedback is very much welcomed and appreciated!
 

grench

Well-Known Member
I went with the strap mount rack which worked fine on my Mini Cooper. It looked like crap and the straps and the footprint pads scratched my paint. I have now put a receiver hitch on the mini and now use the Kuat NV 2. This is a huge improvement in looks and functionality. The mini has no allowable hitch weight. I have been hauling about 112lbs of bikes on the rack. Not sure what the rack weighs but the mini is handling it fine. I would expect your Acura will as well. I will add the link to the post about my rack in a sec.
http://electricbikereview.com/community/threads/platform-bike-rack.1970/#post-23297
 

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
I purchased a CURT 1.25" hitch for my Prius. It weighs just under 25 lbs.

Then for a bike rack I purchased the 1Up Quik, which holds 50 lbs. My bike without battery is 51 lbs. Close enough. Works very well.
 
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David1

Active Member
I have similar sized car. Get Kuat NV 2. High dollar and high quality . Very heavy to install and remove is the only negative.Mine has the smaller sized square pipe for attaching to hitch.Most other cars I see have the larger one. On our size car I think they require smaller . It's amazing the smaller size can carry 1 - 60lb. Ebike let alone 2 ! Hitch was $ 320 installed mine took about 2 hrs. Don't put a cover over bike , It turns it into a sail. Which will make it highly unstable going down the road.
 

Operator7

Active Member
I went with the strap mount rack which worked fine on my Mini Cooper. It looked like crap and the straps and the footprint pads scratched my paint. I have now put a receiver hitch on the mini and now use the Kuat NV 2. This is a huge improvement in looks and functionality. The mini has no allowable hitch weight. I have been hauling about 112lbs of bikes on the rack. Not sure what the rack weighs but the mini is handling it fine. I would expect your Acura will as well. I will add the link to the post about my rack in a sec.
http://electricbikereview.com/community/threads/platform-bike-rack.1970/#post-23297

The Kuat NV 2 is 50lbs, so with just one ST1, the total weight would be over the 100lb limit. You are carrying TWO bikes, so either your mini has more hitch weight capacity, or I don't know...

PowerMe or others who own the 1Up Quick - do you think it can handle an ST1? The weight limit of this rack is listed at 50lbs, and an ST1 without the battery would be 55lbs.
 
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Deleted member 803

Guest
I have a BMW for which is a hitch is tough to find. I went with an Invisihitch (www.execuhitch.com) that replaces the structural support beam in your bumper. It is an elegant solution that allows you to completely remove the tow bar so that when you are not using the hitch to transport your bikes, it is completely invisibile and comes with either a 2" or 1.25" tow bar. Unfortunately most cars fall under the Class 1 weight limits. Class 2 is for some SUV's and trucks. See below:

  1. Class 1 (Class II) Trailer hitch with capacity of up to 2,000 lbs gross trailer weight and 200 lbs tongue weight. Class 2 (Class II) trailer hitch. Trailer hitch with weight-carrying rating of up to 3,500 lbs gross trailer weight and 300/350 lbs tongue weight.
 

Operator7

Active Member
And if I might ask, does anyone have any opinion to offer on the 1Up Quick versus the Saris Freedom? The Saris Freedom is cheaper, and is also carried by REI, which means if I have any problems I can return it (which is very helpful). The Saris says that it can carry 35 lbs of bike per slot... I am wondering if this is just 70lbs total, or if a bike heavier than 35 lbs in one of the slots would cause a problem.
 
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Deleted member 803

Guest
The Kuat NV 2 is 50lbs, so with just one ST1, the total weight would be over the 100lb limit. You are carrying TWO bikes, so either your mini has more hitch weight capacity, or I don't know...

PowerMe or others who own the 1Up Quick - do you think it can handle an ST1? The weight limit of this rack is listed at 50lbs, and an ST1 without the battery would be 55lbs.
Big problem with the 1UPUSA rack carrying my Stromer ST2. It is, unfortunately, rock solid, holds the bike very securely, and takes an ungodly 5 seconds to load/unload. Batteries should be removed from EVERY ebike you transport.
 

Operator7

Active Member
Big problem with the 1UPUSA rack carrying my Stromer ST2. It is, unfortunately, rock solid, holds the bike very securely, and takes an ungodly 5 seconds to load/unload. Batteries should be removed from EVERY ebike you transport.

86, I'm confused. You said it is rock solid and holds the bike very securely, but then you said you had a big problem?
 
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Deleted member 803

Guest
And if I might ask, does anyone have any opinion to offer on the 1Up Quick versus the Saris Freedom? The Saris Freedom is cheaper, and is also carried by REI, which means if I have any problems I can return it (which is very helpful). The Saris says that it can carry 35 lbs of bike per slot... I am wondering if this is just 70lbs total, or if a bike heavier than 35 lbs in one of the slots would cause a problem.
I considered the Saris for my 50lb ebike and I was told it was more than strong enough. The Saris takes up a lot of space (does not fold) but mounts very securely to the hitch without rattles. I went with the 1UP and simply cannot tell I am transporting a bike. The build quality is superb. Google videos on the 1UP to see for yourself
 
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Deleted member 803

Guest
86, I'm confused. You said it is rock solid and holds the bike very securely, but then you said you had a big problem?
I like to complain and find it disquieting when I have nothing bad to say about someone or something......................go with my humor!!!!!!!
 

George S.

Well-Known Member
For a small car you will often find there is no tow rating. If you can find a decent hitch that is designed and engineered into whatever supports exist at the back of the vehicle, that's a good start. It's possible to do this, but the hitch itself will have some weight, plus the rack, plus the bike.

The problem with trailer tongue weight is that the trailer is relatively stable. A bike at the rear of a vehicle is going to go up and down a lot, so the downward motion may leverage weight on the hitch significantly. The basic solution for this is to strap the bike from a higher point, and limit this downward bounce, or transfer the weight of the downward bounces, elsewhere. I don't know how practical installing this strap will be.

Some of the hitches installed on really small cars are impressive, with a lot of engineering to provide a solid enough structure. But you may still see requirements for strapping. The 1UP hitch is very light, which is why I bought it.
 

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
Yes I believe a 1Up rack is well able to hold a Stromer. I advise taking out the battery to lower the overall weight of the bike. 1Up also makes a heavy duty rack (2 bike capacity) that will hold 2, 60 lb bikes. I don't have that model as I didn't feel I needed it. And I didn't.
 

Operator7

Active Member
Thanks guys/gals!!

Between the 1Up and the Saris, what do you think about the ease of removing and mounting the rack? Do you all leave the rack on your car at all times? For me, I will most likely be removing the rack a lot, because of theft concerns, as well as wanting to keep the length of my car shorter when not using the rack. As I see it, if both racks can handle an ST1 (minus the battery), then the other factors are ease of mounting/dis-mounting the rack, cost, stability (as George mentioned), and the ability to return in case something goes wrong.
 

PowerMe

Well-Known Member
I leave my rack on the car at all times, even though it's easy to remove. It's got a low profile, doesn't take up much room, folds up nicely. No reason for me to remove it, as it doesn't get in the way of anything.
 

Operator7

Active Member
I leave my rack on the car at all times, even though it's easy to remove. It's got a low profile, doesn't take up much room, folds up nicely. No reason for me to remove it, as it doesn't get in the way of anything.

I heard people will steal them, if you leave them on your car in public. I have a security parking garage at home and at work, but parking in public would seem to necessitate removing the rack.