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5 Best Single Bike Carrying Hitch Racks (Reviewed Apr, 2020)

Hitch-mount bike racks are considered the most effective for carrying the greatest number of bikes than other types of bike racks. These racks have the proper securities with adequate locking features. Loading and unloading your bikes effortlessly is one of the top advantages with a hitch-mount bike rack. Unlike roof-mount bike racks, most of the hitch-mount bike racks for single bikes offer capacity expansion kits in order to carry more bikes. Recent hitch racks also have tilt-down options and folding features so that you can easily open the rear hatch of your vehicle and convert the rack into a compact form by folding the arms whenever you don’t want to use them.

Considering all these great features, a hitch-mount bike rack for a single bike can be worth giving a try. Unlike other types of bike racks, hitch-mount bike racks for single bikes can be a little bit difficult to find. Generally, whenever someone is looking for a hitch-mount bike rack, he wants it to carry multiple numbers of bikes (at least 2 bikes). Although there are some hitch racks for a single bike, not all of these bike racks may not be the standard ones for your bike. After continuous research and study for a long period of time, we were able to come up with a list of the best single bike hitch-mount racks. Among all the bikes from our list, we want to tag the Küat Transfer single bike rack as our overall best choice.

Küat Transfer

No bike frame contact rack.

The Küat Transfer is a simple design single hitch-mount bike rack. This rack will guarantee you to transfer your bike safely and comfortably. With its PerfectFit™, it will ensure no scratches on your bike. Loading and unloading of your bikes will be a breeze. While crossing an uneven road, your bikes will remain stable for its ratchet arms and anti-rattle hitch pin. This rack also has a smart foot-assisted pivot system that will let you open the rear hatch or trunk easily by tilting the rack to a 45° angle. All you need to do is – buy some additional locks for extra security. Apart from that, this rack is what you want to carry only one bike.

  • Type: Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
  • Number of Bikes: 1
  • Hitch Receiver (in.): 1.25” and 2”
  • Max Weight / Bike (lbs): 45

Going out with your bike alone can be one of the pleasant experiences of your life. There is almost no one, just you with your bike enjoying the unsurpassed freedom. And if you are a person who is inclined to cycling alone, then going around to explore the wild or crossing over the mountains with your bike can be the most unforgettable experience. Unless you just take your bike for casual cycling inside your living territory, you need some equipment to transport your bikes safely. When you like to travel alone with your bike, a single bike rack will do the job for you. While roof-mount racks are popular for carrying a single bike, hitch-mount bike racks are also becoming popular for some particular advantages.

5 best hitch racks you can buy today to carry a single bike

Our list of bike-racks conclude the following choices –

  1. Küat Transfer
  2. RockyMounts MonoRail
  3. Thule (9041) T1
  4. Yakima SingleSpeed
  5. Rola Convoy

Honorable Mentions:

We would like to honor these two bike racks for our “Honorable Mentions”

  1. Raxter stinger 1-bike rack
  2. INNO Tire Hold 1-Bike Hitch Rack (INH110)

If you don’t have much time in your hand, then take a look at this comparison table to get a basic idea about all of these bike racks. But we suggest you not to scan this article with your eye-balls, instead take your time and read the whole content. Trust me, it will be worthy of your time.

Rack
Overall Best Choice
Küat Transfer
RockyMounts MonoRail
Premium Choice
Thule (9041) T1
Yakima SingleSpeed
Budget Choice
Rola Convoy
Preview
Kuat Racks Transfer Hitch Mount Bicycle Rack - 1-Bike Hitch Mount - TS01B -Fits 1.25" and 2" receivers - for 20-29" Wheels up to 4.5" Wide (1 Bike - TS01, Matte Black)
RockyMounts MonoRail Solo 1-Bike (2" &1.25") Expandable Platform Hitch Bicycle Rack
Thule T1 Hitch Mounted Platform Bike Carrier, Black, 2in and 1.25in
YAKIMA - SingleSpeed Lightweight Single Bike Tray Hitch Rack, 1 Bike Capacity
Rola 59307 Convoy Modular Bike Carrier (1-1/4" Base Unit
Style
Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
Extension for Extra Bike
Transfer 1-Bike Add-On
expansion kit (RKY10005)
N/A
N/A
Rola Part 59310
Hitch Receiver (in.)
1.25” and 2”
1.25” and 2”
1.25” and 2”
1.25” and 2”
1.25” and 2”
Dimensions (in.)
29 x 19 x 7
40 x 10 x 10
53 x 15 x 30 / 53 x 26.5 x 15 (Folded)
24 x 38 x 11
57 x 31 x 17
Rack Weight (lbs)
26
25
29.1
20.83
53
Max Weight for Each Bike (lbs)
45
60
60
40
50
Folding Option
No
No
Yes
Yes
Yes
Rear Liftgate Access
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
Integrated Security
No
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Overall Best Choice
Rack
Küat Transfer
Preview
Kuat Racks Transfer Hitch Mount Bicycle Rack - 1-Bike Hitch Mount - TS01B -Fits 1.25" and 2" receivers - for 20-29" Wheels up to 4.5" Wide (1 Bike - TS01, Matte Black)
Style
Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
Extension for Extra Bike
Transfer 1-Bike Add-On
Hitch Receiver (in.)
1.25” and 2”
Dimensions (in.)
29 x 19 x 7
Rack Weight (lbs)
26
Max Weight for Each Bike (lbs)
45
Folding Option
No
Rear Liftgate Access
Yes
Integrated Security
No
Rack
RockyMounts MonoRail
Preview
RockyMounts MonoRail Solo 1-Bike (2" &1.25") Expandable Platform Hitch Bicycle Rack
Style
Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
Extension for Extra Bike
expansion kit (RKY10005)
Hitch Receiver (in.)
1.25” and 2”
Dimensions (in.)
40 x 10 x 10
Rack Weight (lbs)
25
Max Weight for Each Bike (lbs)
60
Folding Option
No
Rear Liftgate Access
Yes
Integrated Security
Yes
Premium Choice
Rack
Thule (9041) T1
Preview
Thule T1 Hitch Mounted Platform Bike Carrier, Black, 2in and 1.25in
Style
Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
Extension for Extra Bike
N/A
Hitch Receiver (in.)
1.25” and 2”
Dimensions (in.)
53 x 15 x 30 / 53 x 26.5 x 15 (Folded)
Rack Weight (lbs)
29.1
Max Weight for Each Bike (lbs)
60
Folding Option
Yes
Rear Liftgate Access
No
Integrated Security
Yes
Rack
Yakima SingleSpeed
Preview
YAKIMA - SingleSpeed Lightweight Single Bike Tray Hitch Rack, 1 Bike Capacity
Style
Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
Extension for Extra Bike
N/A
Hitch Receiver (in.)
1.25” and 2”
Dimensions (in.)
24 x 38 x 11
Rack Weight (lbs)
20.83
Max Weight for Each Bike (lbs)
40
Folding Option
Yes
Rear Liftgate Access
No
Integrated Security
Yes
Budget Choice
Rack
Rola Convoy
Preview
Rola 59307 Convoy Modular Bike Carrier (1-1/4" Base Unit
Style
Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
Extension for Extra Bike
Rola Part 59310
Hitch Receiver (in.)
1.25” and 2”
Dimensions (in.)
57 x 31 x 17
Rack Weight (lbs)
53
Max Weight for Each Bike (lbs)
50
Folding Option
Yes
Rear Liftgate Access
Yes
Integrated Security
Yes

1) Küat Transfer: No bike frame contact

Küat Transfer

  • Type: Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
  • Number of Bikes: 1
  • Rack Weight (lbs): 26
  • Dimensions (in.): 29 x 19 x 7
  • Hitch Receiver (in.): 1.25” and 2”
  • Max Weight / Bike (lbs): 45

Features & Considerations
  • PerfectFit™: This adjustment will make sure there is no frame contact so the bike frame will remain protected.
  • Adaptable Bike Wheels: This rack offers to fit bikes with 20 to 29” wheels and up to 47” wheelbase.
  • Foot-Assisted Pivot: Tilt the rack at a 45° angle by tapping the pivot for convenient rear access.
  • Easy Loading & Unloading: The foot-assisted pivot gently drops down so that you can load and unload your bike without lifting a finger.
  • Adjustable Ratchet Arms: Enables no-wobble fitting of your bike when you put the ratcheting arm on top of the front tire of your bike with one hand.
  • Anti-rattle Hitch Pin: This threaded hitch pin lowers the vibrations of the rack and reduces the squeaky sound that may come from the receiver.
  • Removable Hitch Adapter: You can use this rack for 1.25” receivers by removing its adapter sleeve.
  • Optional Lock Set: Locking hitch pin and integrated locking cables are available to enhance the overall security.
  • Add-On: With Transfer 1-Bike Add-On, you can carry an extra bike.
  • Corrosion Resistant: Made of Steel with black powder coating that makes it corrosion resistant.
  • A limited lifetime warranty will be provided from Thule.

Some Weaknesses
  • For a proper locking system, you need to buy additional locks separately.
  • Will not accommodate any 5th wheels, trailers or flat-towed vehicles.
  • You won’t be able to transport a 12” kids bike with this rack.
  • Pretty hard to assemble.

The Küat Transfer 1-bike hitch-mount bike rack is their entry-level rack. This rack has a rock-solid construction. With a convenient pivot, you can get easy rear hatch access as well as easy bike loading by tapping the spring-loaded foot pedal. This rack is very user-friendly, so if you ride alone while carrying your bike in your car; this rack will be the perfect candidate for you. This rack can carry 1 bike that should weigh 45 lbs or less.

This rack comes in three different forms –
Transfer 1x: Can carry 1 bike (45 lbs/bike) and comes in only black color.
Transfer 2x: Can carry 2 bikes (45 lbs/bike) and comes in black and gray/black color.
Transfer 3x: Can carry 3 bikes and (40 lbs/bike) and available in black and gray/black color.

There is a lot of additional parts that you can buy for this rack such as – Phat Bike Kit (APBK) that includes strap extender to accommodate fat-tire bikes, Additional Lock (ATSCLK11) that includes a locking hitch pin and cable lock for extra security and Transfer 1-Bike Add-On (TSAOB) that allows the rack to carry 2 bikes.

No one can disagree about the quality of Küat bike racks. This company is certainly a well-known brand. You can notice a sticker on a Küat bike rack that represents the Future Forest Initiative program organized by the Küat team with the collaboration of the National Forest Foundation. The motive of this program is to plant trees as much as possible, especially in the fire-damaged national forests within the US. More than 352,875 trees were being planted with the effort of this program.

Kuat Transfer Hitch Mount Bicycle Rack

Kuat Transfer Hitch Mount Bicycle Rack

2) RockyMounts MonoRail: Platform hitch Rack with no bike frame contact

RockyMounts MonoRail

  • Type: Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
  • Number of Bikes: 1
  • Rack Weight (lbs): 25
  • Dimensions (in.): 40 x 10 x 10
  • Hitch Receiver (in.): 1.25” and 2”
  • Max Weight / Bike: 60

Features & Considerations
  • No-Frame Contact: With the help of the ratcheting hooks, this rack secures your bike by its front wheel leaving no scratches on the frame.
  • Bike Compatibility: Most types of bike racks can be accommodated with this bike rack including fat-tire bikes and eBikes.
  • Adaptable Wheelbases: Bikes with wheelbases ranging from 34” to 49” are compatible with this rack.
  • Adaptable Bike Tires: This rack is adaptable with 5.0” road-bike tires and fat-bike tires from 20” to 29” diameters.
  • Tilting Feature: With this feature, you can keep the rack flat against the vehicle and tilt it down to 30° providing easy rear hatch access.
  • Easy Loading & Unloading: Load and unload your bikes easily with its large front and rear wheel cradles.
  • Keyed Alike Locking Mechanism: Offers a complete package for the total security of your bike including a locking hitch pin, a cable lock and standard lock pods that can be accessed with a single key.
  • Anti-Wobble Hitch Pin: Eliminates all types of wobbles and noises with its threaded hitch pin.
  • Expansion Kit: Load an extra bike when you purchase the expansion kit (RKY10005).
  • Rust Resistant: The body is made of the combination of Steel and Aluminum that is rust-resistant for its black powder coating.
  • Covering any manufacturing defects and workmanship, this rack is backed by a limited lifetime warranty.

Some Weaknesses
  • This rack is not for those bicycles that are equipped with fenders.
  • Cannot be used on 5th wheel campers, trailers, and any flat-towed vehicle.
  • The locks that are included may feel flimsy as they are made of cheap plastic.
  • May not use the tailgate of a truck if this rack is installed. For example – a Toyota Tundra.

The RockyMounts MonoRail Solo is a bike rack that guarantees the safe and secure transportation of a single bike. The locking mechanism of this rack is a valuable feature of this rack. Also, this rack is very lightweight and easy to use. This rack can accommodate a great variety of bikes with different wheelbases and tires. It has large adjustable cradles that will let you load and unload bikes very easily and quickly. With this rack, you will have the confidence to carry your bikes to the trailhead.

With a smart tilt-down design, this rack can angle to 30° for suitable rear hatch access and you can fold it against the vehicle when you are not going to use it. One 1.25” and one 2” hitch receiver will come with the box so that you can fit this rack on both types of hitches. This rack is able to carry only one bike that should have a maximum weight of 60 lbs. If you want to carry another bike, you need to buy the expansion kit (RKY10005) separately.

The founder of ‘RockyMounts’, Bobby Noyes set out back in 1993 from New Jersey to Colorado. Realizing the necessity of good bike racks, he started to produce bike racks in his shop. Eventually, his racks became popular and started to be sold across the US. The evolution of this company started by producing high-quality products for outdoor enthusiasts and professional athletes.

RockyMounts Monorail Solo Platform Hitch Rack

RockyMounts Monorail Solo Platform Hitch Rack

3) Thule T1: Rugged platform rack

Thule T1 (9041)

  • Type: Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
  • Number of Bikes: 1
  • Rack Weight (lbs): 29.1
  • Dimensions (in.): 53 x 15 x 30 / 53 x 26.5 x 15 (Folded)
  • Hitch Receiver (in.): 1.25” and 2”
  • Max Weight / Bike: 60

Features & Considerations
  • Frame-Free Contact: The ratcheting arm holds your bike through the front wheels and does not contact your bike-frame.
  • Bike Compatibility: An ideal bike rack that is compatible with carbon-frame bikes, fat-tire bikes, mountain bikes, downhill and eBikes.
  • Adaptable Wheel Size: Won’t require any adapters to adjust 20-29” wheelbases and 5” tires.
  • STL2 Lock: This rack can make itself secure to the vehicle with its STL2 lock.
  • Integrated Cable Lock: The integrated cable lock protects your bike from theft.
  • Adjustable Bike Tray: For an optimized bike position, you can slide the rack for front to back and side to side adjustment.
  • HitchSwitch Lever: With the help of this lever, you can fold the rack completely flat against your vehicle.
  • Carry Handle: A convenient carry handle is included for easier transportation of the rack.
  • Rust Resistant: Made of rough Steel and the black powder coating provides resistance against rust.
  • Easy Assemble and install: This rack comes fully assembled and has a very easy installation process.
  • Get a limited lifetime warranty by submitting a warranty form on their official website.

Some Weaknesses
  • Never meant to be used for vehicles with front fenders.
  • For some vehicles, the rear hatch may be difficult to open when the hitch is in a raised position loaded with the bike. For example – 2020 Porsche Cayenne.
  • Use of a considerable number of plastic parts makes the overall build quality very poor.

The Thule T1 (9041) is a platform-style bike rack for a single bike that has a rugged design and frame-free clamping security to accommodate all types of bikes such as mountain bikes, downhill, carbon-frame bikes, fat-tire bikes and eBikes. The overall locking mechanism is just great where you can lock your bike to the rack with a cable lock and lock the rack to the vehicle with a SnugTite (STL2) hitch lock.

This rack can adjust both 1.25” and 2” hitch receivers. The maximum weight load capacity of this rack is 60 lbs. So, this rack can easily carry a heavy bike. This rack has all the qualities that you can expect from a hitch-mount bike rack. Especially, when you are looking for a bike rack for a single bike. However, there are some downsides of this rack like the overall build quality of this rack is poor as there can be seen cheap plastic parts in most of the area.

The company’s founder, Erik Thulin made fishing equipment for the Scandinavian fishermen and they were mostly pike fishing traps. Gradually, he started making accessories for bikes and little by little ‘Thule’ was established in Sweden in 1942. The headquarter of ‘Thule’ is located in Malmo, Sweden and the company has more than 2,200 employees at different locations all over the world.

Thule T1 Hitch Mounted Platform Bike Carrier

Thule T1 Hitch Mounted Platform Bike Carrier

4) Yakima SingleSpeed: Lightweight tray hitch rack

Yakima SingleSpeed

  • Type: Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
  • Number of Bikes: 1
  • Rack Weight (lbs): 20.83
  • Dimensions (in.): 24 x 38 x 11
  • Hitch Receiver (in.): 1.25” and 2”
  • Max Weight / Bike: 40

Features & Considerations
  • Bike Compatibility: Most bike frames including mountain bikes, road bikes, fat-tire bikes, hybrid bikes, women’s bikes, and BMX bikes can be fitted with this rack.
  • Frame Safety: The ratcheting strap holds the bike by its front tire that ensures no frame contact while transporting the bike.
  • Folding Wheel-Cups: Large front and rear wheel-cups that are foldable so that you can convert the rack into a compact shape when it is not being used.
  • StrongArm: This will protect painted bike surfaces and carbon bike-frames.
  • Locking SpeedKnob™: Easy and fast installation and removal of the rack with its SpeedKnob™ where you don’t have to use any tools.
  • Components Adaptability: You can carry full-suspension mountain bikes on this rack. Also, bikes that have disc type brakes, boost hubs and through axles can be carried on this rack.
  • Adaptable Wheels: Bikes with 20” to 29” wheel sizes where the tire is up to 4.8” wide, can be adjusted with this rack.
  • SKS Lock: Integrated Same Key System (SKS) lock will deter any kind of theft of the rack and the bike.
  • Integrated Bottle-Cap Opener: With the Yakima’s signature bottle-cap opener, you can enjoy a cold drink after a long exhausting ride.
  • Rust Resistant: This rack is made of Steel and the glossy black powder coating makes it resistant to rust.
  • A lightweight rack that has a versatile design.
  • Yakima will provide a limited lifetime warranty for all kinds of racks.

Some Weaknesses
  • The locking cable might be too short to adjust some bike-frames.
  • The cable can be very easy to cut as it seems to be 0.25” thick.
  • The tray holds the rear tire of your bike with two plastic pins that might become loose causing a miserable incident.
  • This rack may not fit a fat-tire bike with 27.5” tires.

The Yakima SingleSpeed single bike rack is always ready to roll when you are planning to go out with your bikes to make a decent tour. The StrongArm hook keeps the bike in place and makes sure it remains protected during the whole tour. This allows you to carry any expensive bike such as a custom paint bike or a carbon-frame bike. With the SpeedKnob™, the installation and removal of your bike will become a breeze. You can also lock it to keep the rack secure with your vehicle.

The Same Key System (SKS) locking mechanism will keep your bike protected by deterring theft of the bike and itself. Like most of the Yakima bike racks, this rack also has a rugged construction made of Steel and it has a premium glossy look for the black powder coating. With a weight load capacity of 40 lbs, this rack is able to carry only one bike. Some say that the installation process is a little bit difficult. If that is true, then check this video to get a better guideline –

Otto and Jeanne Lagervall founded ‘Yakima’ industries in 1973. Otto made foot braces for canoes and kayaks. They basically had a small machine shop in Yakima, Washington where they made roof-racks for ladders and pruning equipment. The ‘Gold Rush Bar’ was the first national product that was introduced by the Yakima industry. Later in 1979, their small machine shop was purchased by Steve Cole and Don Banducci. They saw a great future to make quality products for kayakers and cyclists. Today, this company has its own headquarters in Oregon and as a sister concern, it has ‘Yakima Australia’ where the engineers mainly focus on making off-road products.

YAKIMA - SingleSpeed Single Bike Tray Hitch Rack

YAKIMA – SingleSpeed Single Bike Tray Hitch Rack

5) Rola Convoy: Built with corrosion-resistant material (aluminum)

Rola Convoy

  • Type: Hitch-Mount (Platform-Style)
  • Number of Bikes: 1
  • Rack Weight (lbs): 53
  • Dimensions (in.): 57 x 31 x 17
  • Hitch Receiver (in.): 1.25” and 2”
  • Max Weight / Bike: 50

Features & Considerations
  • Variants: This rack is available in 2 variants – one variant is for 1.25” hitch receiver and the other one is for 2” hitch receiver.
  • No-Frame Contact: The ratcheting hook and the rear-wheel strap holds the bike by its tires ensuring no frame contact.
  • Bike Compatibility: Bikes of different sizes and styles can be adjusted with this rack like – adult’s bike, children’s bike, bike with or without a fender and even a fat-tire bike.
  • Adaptable Wheel Size: Comes with extra-long wheel strap to accommodate any fat-tire bike with tires up to 5” wide.
  • Foldable Design: Fold the rack with its locking pin whenever it is not needed.
  • Tilt-down Option: With the locking pin, you can also tilt the rack to get proper rear hatch access.
  • Locking Mechanism: Secure your bike by locking the hook and lock the threaded hitch pin to secure the rack to the hitch receiver.
  • Rust & Corrosion Resistant: Constructed with Steel and the gray powder coat finish makes it rust and corrosion-resistant.
  • Add-A-Rack: Convert the rack to carry 2 bikes at a time by attaching an add-on unit (Rola Part 59310)
  • Ease to Use: You can smoothly load and unload your bike on this rack.
  • Built-in Reflectors: Enhance the visibility at night with its built-in reflector.
  • All mounting hardware is included for installation.
  • This rack is relatively less expensive compared to its competitors.
  • A 5-year warranty will be provided with this rack.

Some Weaknesses
  • Keeps the bike at a higher position, so it is difficult to load a heavy bike.
  • This rack is too heavy to attach to the hitch.
  • It cannot be used on RVs, motor-homes, and trailers.
  • Both of these locks seem to be pretty useless.
  • May cause excessive vibrations as the center of mass of the entire rack remain far away from the vehicle.

The Rola Convoy Modular Bike Carrier provides the assurance to easily transport your bike from one place to another. This rack offers an innovative design with a rear reflector that will protect your bike during night enhancing the visibility of your vehicle. This rack is designed to hold various kinds of bikes and it is loaded with great features that make it an amazing choice.

Rola 59307 Convoy Modular Bike Carrier

Rola 59307 Convoy Modular Bike Carrier

This rack can be found in two different forms – one connects with 1.25” hitch receiver and another one connects with 2” hitch receiver. Both of these variants are suitable for Class II and Class III hitches. This rack has room for only one bike where the bike should weigh a maximum of 50 lbs.

This rack can hold any bike that consists of 20”-29” wheels, 48” wheelbase and 5” tire width.
By adding the add-on units you can carry up to 4 bikes on this rack where the bikes will have an excellent ground clearance and there will be 10.5” bike-to-bike spacing. Check out this video to get a clear image about the features of this rack –


Different hitch-mount racks for different kinds of bikes

Different types of hitch-mount bike rack can carry a variety of bikes. There are bikes with different frames and sizes. Regular types of bikes such as road and mountain bikes will adjust any kind of hitch-mount bike rack. There are other types of bikes like step-through frames, children and women’s bikes, carbon-frame bikes and full-suspension bikes that may require some adapter bars to get installed on hitch-mount bike racks as all hitch racks may not be able to hold them.

The chart below shows the right types of hitch-racks and their adjustability and stability for different types of bikes –

Different Hitch-Mount Bike Rack for Different Bikes

 

Benefits of hitch-mount bike racks

A hitch-mount bike rack connects with the vehicle by sliding into the receiver of a hitch. This type of rack has some benefits over a roof-mount and a trunk-mount rack.

  • This type of bike rack has a greater number of bike loading capacity compared to other types of bike racks. For example – Any usual hanging or platform-style hitch rack can carry up to 5 bikes and a vertical-style hitch rack has a maximum number of bike load capability which is 6 bikes.
  • Unlike a roof-mount rack, this type of rack carries your bikes at the back of the vehicle, so there is no possibility of hitting any tree-branches which actually eliminates any kind of overhead-clearance problem.
  • Recent types of hitch-mount bike racks have tilt-down features so that you won’t face any difficulties opening the rear hatch of your vehicle even when the rack is fully loaded with bikes.
  • This type of rack provides more security for your bikes than the other two types of bike-racks.
  • With the capability of loading a variety of bike frames, this rack is a popular choice for non-conventional bike-frames.
  • Comparatively easier to mount and dismount bikes than a roof-mount bike rack.
  • Unlike trunk-mount racks, this rack allows you to access the rear trunk of your car.
  • This rack works well with different types of vehicles than trunk-mount bike racks.
  • Compared to a roof-mount rack, this rack is more aerodynamic.


F.A.Q.s

Q: What kind of hitch-mount bike rack do you need for a single bike?

Ans: Depending on your bike, it is better to go for a platform-style hitch mount bike rack when you really want a hitch-mount bike rack. In general, the platform-style hitch-mount bike rack contains a ratcheting hook that holds the bike by its front wheel. As a result, there is no frame contact with your bike and your bike remains scratch-free. But when you want to haul an expensive carbon-frame bike or custom paint bike, it is better to go for a roof-mount bike rack rather than buying a hitch-mount bike rack. Roof-mount bike racks offer the ultimate protection when you want to transport an expensive bike.

Q: Should I check the size of my vehicle’s hitch before buying a hitch-mount bike rack?

Ans: Yes, you should confirm the hitch-size of your vehicle before buying a hitch rack. There are generally two sizes of hitches available for all regular type vehicles. They are – 2” x 2” and 1.25” x 1.25” hitch receivers. And there are 3 types of classes for regular hitches – Class I, Class II, Class III hitches. Again, 2 hitches are available for non-conventional type vehicles. They are – Class IV and Class V hitch. Please be sure you buy a hitch-mount bike rack that suits your vehicle’s hitch receiver. Although there are adapters that can be used to convert the usual hitch size, it is always better to know the exact size of your hitch receiver before buying a hitch rack. Take a look at the table below to see the compatibilities of these five types of hitch-types –
Hitch Types and Towing Capacity

Q: How can I secure my bike to the rack properly?

Ans: If your bike-rack doesn’t come with an appropriate locking system, then you can always find some top-grade locks in the market. There are metal cables with proper key-locks which will protect your bikes. Again, there are additional hitch-locks available in the market that can be bought separately to avoid rack theft. With expert help, you can also make your own locking mechanism to protect your bikes from getting robbed.

Q: Will the same rack fit all types of vehicles?

Ans: No, you cannot fit the same type of rack for all types of vehicles. Hitch-mount and trunk-mount bike racks are suited best for SUVs, minivans, sedans, hatchbacks and other types of vehicles, while there are hitch racks made for RVs, 5th wheel campers and other towed vehicles. Roof-mount bike racks are best for sedans, minivans and SUVs. Spare-tire bike racks are only for those vehicles that have spare tires on their backs. Again, truck-bed racks can only be used on truck beds and inside minivans. There are tailgate-pads available for only trucks. Take a look at this chart to get an idea about the features of these racks –

Different Hitch-Mount Bike Rack

Q: Is it possible to open the trunk with all types of bike racks?

Ans: Unless you are using a trunk-mount bike rack, you can always open the trunk for other types of bike racks. You may drive a sedan or a hatchback and you are using a trunk-mount bike rack. Then, opening the rear trunk won’t be easy and in some cases, it will be impossible. Using a roof-mount or hitch-mount bike rack will allow you access to the trunk of your vehicle.

Q: What type of rack is restricted to use?

Ans: As long as it follows the corresponding rules and regulations regarding bike and vehicle accessories, it won’t be prohibited to use. Most of the bike-racks follow the rules and regulations about the safety and security of transporting bikes. Therefore, they are not restricted to use.

Although it is a minor issue, we should always keep an eye out for the bike carrier as they might cover the license plate of the vehicle. Your bike rack should make sure that it is not covering the license plate or lights. If that happens, your rack should include an additional license plate holder where you can place a copy of your license.

Q: What is the most convenient area to install a bike rack?

Ans: Hitch or tow ball is the most convenient area to install bike-rack judging by consumptions and aerodynamics. The main reason is – when we carry our bikes on a bike rack, the body of the vehicle works as a shield for our bicycles. And when we haul our bikes on a hitch-mount bike rack, we get enough space for ourselves and the vehicle can get an excellent balance on the rear wheels, especially when a platform-style hitch-mount bike rack is installed. These types of racks keep the bikes at a higher position and they are somehow fuel consumption where the fuel condition of your vehicle doesn’t exceed its limit quickly. Moreover, most of the hitch-mount bike racks have tilt-down features to get easy rear hatch access. In short, a hitch or tow-ball is the most suitable place to install a bike rack judging by each and every pros and con.

Q: What are the different types of hitch-mount bike-racks?

Ans: Generally, there three different types of hitch-mount bike racks. They are – Platform/Tray-style, Hanging-style and Vertical-style hitch-mount bike racks. Take a look at this comparison table to justify the difference among them –

Q: Should I buy a hitch-mount bike rack with adequate locks?

Ans: Yes, you should because a bike-rack without any locking option is just an opportunity for a thief to steal your bikes along with the rack itself. Look for a bike rack with enough security like locking cables, locking hitch-pins, integrated tie-down straps and etc. Some racks have sufficient locking features though they are very easy to uninstall. This will also increase the risk of stealing your bikes. It is always better to have extra locks that you need to buy separately. Remember, it is not possible for you to be around with your vehicle all the time, so adequate locking features for your bike is a must.

Q: Will my license plate be covered for installing a hitch-mount or trunk -mount bike rack?

Ans: Trunk-mount or hitch-mount bike-racks can sometimes cover the license plate of your vehicle, especially when they are loaded with bikes. For apparent reasons, a roof-mount bike rack won’t cover the license plate of your vehicle. The rack models that are mounted on the back of the vehicle can block the view of your car’s license plate. All the manufacturers should consider providing additional holders to keep a copy of the license.

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Last update on 2020-04-07 at 22:04 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Dion Lewis
My name is Dion Lewis.

I’ve been cycling from my childhood. When I was in high school, I started racing in our local competitions.

At my college life, I took a part time job in a bicycle shop and I learned how to repair and maintain bicycles professionally.

Though I love racing, mountain biking is another thing I do frequently. My friends, neighbors, and colleagues treat me as an avid rider and take my suggestions while they plan for a new bike or a bike gear.

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