The bicycle is one of the most efficient means of transport ever created. The type of bicycle depends on what type of biking one wants to do. Be it racing, touring, mountain biking, one can choose a bicycle that appropriately suites one’s needs. In earlier times the curiosity and wanderlust of people made them load their bicycles by any means and head off in search of the next epic ride.
However with the advent of bike racks, carrying bikes from one place to another has become much more easy. In a quest to find the perfect bike rack and to know which one best suits your needs, multiple vehicles and bikes of every variety were loaded , unloaded and driven thousands of miles on highways. Getting the bikes on and off of a vehicle with minimal effort is paramount to the testers. The less hassle it is to load, the more likely you will be able to go for a ride.
The vast majority of suv bike rack models in the market fall under three main categories:
- Roof Racks
- Hitch Mount
- Trunk Mount
The roof racks mount to the roof of your vehicle and require some sort of rail and crossbars. They provide the greatest capacity to handle multiple bikes for a given vehicle. Roof racks can be further divided into fork mount and tray style racks.
Hitch Mount bike racks plug into a hitch receiver that is permanently mounted to the undercarriage of the vehicle. Many vehicles come equipped with a hitch receiver. They hold bicycles in two ways: a tray mount such as Just NV or the Thule T2 Classic which uses a clamping arm.
These have the advantage of being easy to load, as they are closer to the ground. However their overall capacity is limited to only four bikes with even the highest capacity models.
The trunk mount bike racks are a convenient option for those who have vehicles without a roof crossbar system. They are lightweight and can be used for a multitude of vehicles.
The most popular bike rack is the “ hanging style” with a tow hitch. It offers value for money and can carry up to four bikes. A roof rack is generally the preferred choice when the car is too low and a trailer hitch may scratch the ground.
The best overall bike rack is the Thule T2 Pro. It is the best scoring product in nearly every category. It has excellent ergonomics with the lowest loading height of any rack in review. The top pick for a roof rack is the Just Trio. It is the most versatile, secure and easy to load rack.
The best trunk rack available is the Thule Raceway Pro 9001 . It has the ability to carry a variety of frame types and sizes.
A good bike rack must be easy to use and versatile. If one needs to transport multiple bikes, the overall capacity must play an important part in decision making. It must also be easy to assemble and attach.