Last Updated on June 8, 2020 by Michael J. Branco
Are you planning an adventurous trip with your family and friends and want to bring along your bike? If you are going to hit the road with your bike, then you definitely need a bike rack. Most bike racks are usually attached to the hitch of the car, and they are designed to securely hold bikes in place during transit.
However, it is important to note that there are plenty of hitch bike racks in the market that comes in numerous styles and designs. For this reason, most people find it challenging to choose the best hitch bike rack for their needs. If you are planning your next trip and you are wondering which hitch bike rack to choose, worry no more. Below is a list of some of the best hitch bike racks that you can choose from. So read on to find out!
Comparison: Top Rated Best Hitch Bike Racks
Read full Best Hitch Bike Racks Product Review
If you are after an easy to assemble hitch bike rack that will keep your bike steady at all times, you may want to consider the Swagman XC2 Sturdy Hitch Bike Rack for the car. This rack weighs 32lbs, and it can surprisingly carry two bikes in its adjustable tray system. It holds bikes of 20” to 29” tire sizes with a maximum capacity of 35lbs per bike. Hence, it can accommodate a total capacity of 70 pounds.
With this item, you won’t be worried about your bike being unstable. This is thanks to the in-built anti-wobble hitch device. It also features secure ratcheting arms and threaded hitch pin that helps to minimize rack movement during travel. The ratchet arms can adjust to various bike frame sizes measuring up to 59 cm.
Given its weight, it is very easy to install & remove and can fold easily for convenient storage. Plus, it takes only a few minutes to assemble this rack. You will also appreciate that the center arm folds down, and this means that you won’t have to remove the rack to gain access to the back of your vehicle. Having all these features Swagman is one of the best hitch mount bike racks.
- Type: Platform
- Weight: 32lbs
- Number of bikes: 2
- Maximum weight capacity: 35lbs per bike
- Compatible with 1 ¼” and 2” receiver hitch
- Built-in anti-wobble hitch device
The Allen Sports 4-Bike Hitch Rack is a dependable choice for those who are planning to hit the road with their friends and family. This rack can accommodate 4 differently framed bikes, each with its own toe to hold it in place. Plus, it comes with 22-inch arms that work to secure the bikes to the tie-down system.
This rack is compatible with 2” hitches (Class III and Class IV). The setup is very easy especially when one has the right tools. It would take approximately 5 minutes or less to set up and install the rack, so you can have ample time to set up the bikes. Impressively, the rack can be tilted outwards to give you access to the rear of your vehicle. If your car is SUV type than this it is one of the best bike racks for SUV.
Another great spec of this best mountain bike rack is that it can easily be folded when not in use. Hence, you don’t have to keep detaching and reattaching it.
- Number of bikes: 4
- 22-inch long rack arm
- Compatible with Class III or Class IV 2” hitch
- Steel construction with black powder coat finish
- Maximum weight capacity: 140lbs
- Maximum weight capacity per bike: 35lbs
This is another rack that is designed to hold 4 bikes with a weight capacity of 50lbs per bike. This carrier comes with adjustable wheel cradles for easy loading and ratchetings hooks to hold your bikes in place. You can, therefore, go on rough terrain with peace of mind knowing that your bikes are well secured in place.
The rack is crafted from sturdy material and can hold 4 bikes on 2-inch hitch receivers. The adjustable wheel holder fits bikes of 60-inch wheelbase and 3-inch tire width. When not in use, the rack folds flat against the vehicle, and it can tilt down to give access to the trunk. It is considered as one of the bike carrier hitches bikes.
Another unconventional feature is the keyed-alike hitch lock as well as a frame hook that comes in handy to fasten the bikes to the rack and prevent theft. The security cable wraps around the frames, and this discourages the rack from swaying during movement. Plus, the rack is highly versatile, and it can be converted to 2 bike mode, and it can carry adult trike with a trike adapter kit.
- Bike capacity: 4
- Type: Platform-style mount
- Hitch Size: 2” only
- Weight capacity per bike: 50lbs
- 8” security cable and locking hitch pin
The Yakima Ridgeback bike rack is a hanging type of bike rack that can carry up to 4 bikes with traditional geometry. This rack weighs 32lbs and it fits receivers measuring 1-1/4” or 2”. This rack comes with very thoughtful features that will make transporting your bikes an effortless process.
One outstanding feature is the ZipStrip system that offers exceptional security for your bikes during transportation. It also comes with an anti-sway feature that ensures the bikes don’t have any physical contact as this could cause damage.
With the SpeedKnob feature, this rack is pretty simple to install and remove, and it eliminates the need for hardware. Plus, it has a foldable design that makes storage easy even with limited space. Additionally, the upper hand level can help you tilt the rack down for easy access without a need for detaching it.
- Bike quantity: 4
- Mount type: tilt away hitch rack
- Weight: 32lbs
- ZipStrip system
- Tool-free SpeedKnob
- Compatibility: 1-1/4” or 2” hitch receiver
The BV Bike Hitch Mount Rack provides a convenient way to transport two bikes with a maximum load of 35lbs per bike. It features a tray-style smart titling design that allows you to tilt it out of the way in order to open its rear door. This eliminates the hassles of detaching its hitch rack each time you want access to a portion of your vehicle’s trunk.
When it’s not in use, the rack can fold up easily for more convenient storage. This rack comes with tray styled loops & padded arms that are responsible for securing your bike right in place. Plus, it padded arms on either side help to prevent scratches and other damages on your bikes. In addition, the anti-wobble design stops wobbling that occurs between the rack and the hutch.
A unique spec of this rack is the rear safety reflector which enhances visibility, especially when driving at night. It can reflect the brake light if they are unnoticeable through the hitch.
- Number of bikes: 2
- Maximum load capacity per bike: 35lb
- Bike mounting system: 3 point connection system
- Smart tilt-back design
- 2-way anti-wobble design
- Fold-up design
- Tray style loops & padded arms
One impressive thing about this 4-bike carrier rack is the fact that it best suited for all kinds of bikes. Meanwhile, it is compatible with vehicles that are fitted with either 1.25 or 2-inch hitch receivers. Its sturdy and solid construction enables it to comfortably accommodate 4 bikes.
It features easy ratchet buckles, lock and safety strap, and hitch lock that ensures your bike is well attached to the rack. To add to the security, this rack is aligned with soft cradles and bar cushion. This way, each bike is individually secured and fastened to your car at all times.
Another advantage is the easy installation process that takes just a matter of minutes. The process of installation is pretty straightforward even for beginners. Plus, a DIY instruction guide is included in the package. You will also appreciate the tilt-down design and foldable option which allows for more convenience.
- Bike capacity: 4
- Hitch compatibility: 1- ¼” or 2” hitch receiver
- Tilt down feature
- Foldable carry arms
- Security and locks: Hitch lock, cable, and security strap
With a maximum load capacity of 45 pounds for every bike, this 2 bike carrier fits 1-1/4” and 2” hitch receivers. This versatile carrier can be used to hold different frame sizes and shapes, and it fits well with 12” and 29” tire sizes.
It is designed with safety in mind thanks to the 2 lock cylinders and adjustable and reliable locking hooks that secure the bike frame thoroughly to the rack. The hook ratchets enhance the stability of the bikes on the road.
Like other best hitch bike racks, this rack can tilt down even when fully loaded with the bike for convenient access to the vehicle’s rear. Even better, it features a foldable design and the installation is pretty quick and easy.
- Bike capacity: 2
- Maximum load capacity: 45 pounds per bike
- Compatibility: 1-1/4” and 2” hitch receivers
- Fits 12” to 29” tire sizes
- Includes locking hooks and locking hitch pin
If what you are after is a sturdy bike carrier with a capacity of 2 bikes, look no further than Overdrive Sport Hitch Mounted Rack. Featuring the anti-wobble system, this carrier will keep your bikes safe and sturdy as you drive through different kinds of terrain. This is owing to the fact that the anti-wobble mechanism eliminates any slack from the rack to the receiver.
This rack features a strong construction thanks to the powder coating on the steel tube. It is among the few racks in the market that can accommodate a whopping 60lbs per bike and it can carry most types of standard bikes. Additionally, it includes a locking knob for ensuring that the bikes are well fastened.
The quick-release tilt design makes it possible to access the rear cargo even when the rack is loaded with bikes. A good feature is a rear reflector for enhanced visibility at night.
- Patented anti-wobble mechanism
- Fits 2” hitches only
- Maximum load capacity: 60lbs per bike
- Includes locking knob and locking hitch pin
- Patented lever for tilt down and fold up options
The Yakima Hold Up rack features a platform style and it is designed to carry 2 bikes. Nonetheless, there is an additional attachment for 2 bikes so that you can load 4 bikes when hitting the road. It has a weight limit of 60lbs per bike which translates to a total capacity of 120lbs.
Impressively, it features a StrongArm design that enables you to load your bikes quickly without any contact with the frame. Plus, the beefed-up arm pivot enhances the performance of the rack. So whether you want to load 20” wheel or 29” wheel, this rack will serve its purpose well.
Also, this rack can carry carbon road bikes, and it can accommodate full-suspension brakes, disc brakes, and thru-axles. The assembly is very easy, and it will just take minutes to assemble.
- StrongArm design
- Bike capacity: 2
- Compatibility: 1-1/4” or 2” hitch receiver
- 60lbs weight capacity per bike
If you are a serious biker, then you will most definitely love the Thule T2 Pro XT 2 Bike rack. Although this rack comes at a hefty price, it is worth the money considering the features it comes with. It fits a 2inch hitch receiver and is very easy to install thanks to the auto attach system that completely tools free. The platform style is designed to accommodate 2 to 4 bikes including carbon frames, downhill, mountain and fat bikes with 5” tires. It is also the best car bike rack.
It also comes with security features including an integrated cable lock and lock knob to secure the bikes. Plus, you can secure the bike with the ratcheting arm locks without any frame contact. The rack folds very easily and tilts down for the back of vehicle access.
- Tool-free Auto Attach system
- Fits 20” to 29” wheels
- A 2-foot cable lock system
- Weight: 51 pounds
- Ratcheting arm
What to Look Out for When Buying the Best Hitch Bike Rack?
When shopping for a hitch bike rack, there is a need to pay attention to important features so you can make an informed buying decision. Here is a buyer’s guide to help you.
Type of Bike Rack
When it comes to the bike racks, there are three types available in the market. The first type is the platform rack which comes with a tray to hold your handy bike in place during transit. The other type is the hanging rack where the bike is hung suspended by their frame and lastly, we have the wheel only rack that involves hanging your bike suspended by the wheels.
There are also different styles of bike racks in the market including roof racks, tow barracks, trunk-mounted racks, boot racks, and hitch racks. Hitch bike racks are better suited for SUVs and trucks.
Along with determining the right type of hitch bike rack for your needs, it is recommendable to consider your bike type. You want to ensure that the rack you choose can fit perfectly with your bike. Generally speaking, most men bikes fit well on a hitch rack while models designed for women and children may need a special adapter. This is particularly true if you opt for hanging racks.
Weight of Rack
The weight of the rack is another important consideration when making your buying decision. Whichever rack you choose, see to it that it is lightweight enough for you to carry and lift away when not in use. A rack that is easy to assemble is also a good choice.
It also goes without saying that the weight capacity of the rack matters. The weight capacity that the rack can accommodate is usually linked to the number and weight of the bikes.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Can a bike rack damage my car?
A: Yes, a hitch bike rack can damage your car if it is not installed the right way. To avoid this, ensure that you are extremely cautious when loading your bike to the rack.
Q: How much weight can a hitch bike hold?
A: Typically, the weight capacity depends on the model of the hitch. It is therefore important to research and check the hitch user guide so as to know if it can handle your biked weight.
Q: Does hitch bike rack cover the rear lights or number plates?
A: No. Most hitch bike racks are designed such that they do not stand in the way of the vehicle’s number plates or rear lights. It is, however, important to note that parts of the bike such as the tires may hide the number plates.
Q: Which is the best style of the hitch bike rack?
A: To be honest, the best style of bike rack depends upon the needs and preferences of the user. So it is best to choose a style that you feel most comfortable with and one that meets your application needs.
Benefits of Hitch Bike Rack
There are numerous reasons why a hitch bike rack is a better choice compared to strap on racks, truck rack, or roof-mounted bike rack. Some of the benefits that can be accrued from owning a hitch bike rack include:
Carries Multiple Bikes
Compared to other types of racks like the roof rank that can carry only two bikes at once, a hitch bike rack is capable of holding multiple bikes. The market is flooded with hitch bike rack models that are designed to carry more than two bikes, making them suitable for families or a group of friends that are planning to take a trip together.
Eliminates Overhead Clearance Issues
Since the hitch bike rack is placed at the back of the vehicle, it is very easy to maintain your vehicle’s clearance the same. On the other hand, roof racks are likely to lower the clearance of your vehicle since the bikes are placed at the top of the vehicle.
Doesn’t Require Straps
Another advantage of hitch bike racks is that they are designed to hold the bikes in place without the need for straps. Racks that are strap-based could be a cause of disaster on the road. This is especially true if the straps become loose or damaged as they are likely to cause an accident.
Maximizes Storage Space
If you are planning to carry luggage and other items, you will appreciate that the hitch bike rack doesn’t take up important storage space. This way, you can transit your bikes without worrying about them taking too much space.
From the above review, it is evident that the market is flooded with quality hitch mount bike rack to help you conveniently carry your bike from one location to another. The racks come in different styles, so whether you want a platform style, wheel style rack or hanging style, you can always find a rack for your needs. These racks can be great companions if you are planning to go for a camping trip where you will bring your bike along with you.
When making your decision, it is highly recommendable to keep in mind paramount factors such as the rack type, bike type, weight of rack and hitch compatibility. You also want to ensure that the hitch bike rack you choose features a foldable and tilt design so that you can easily access the rear cargo without much struggle. We have given you the best hitch bike rack reviews along with with that some mountain bike hitch rack reviews.
At the end of the day, the best hitch bike rack will hold your bike securely in place so that you can have more time biking and less time worrying.