Best Car Racks For Electric Bikes


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So, you’ve found an electric bike that you love and you’re ready to explore with it; now it’s time to look at finding the best e-bike car rack for your situation.

The market for car bike racks is not lacking in options, but it is important to find one that can handle the extra weight and bulk that comes with e-bikes. Many bike racks were built with carrying traditional bikes in mind, which seldomly ever meant accommodating more than 50 lbs worth of bike. That can pose a problem for many e-bikes, which often tip the scales at 50 lbs or more. Heck, we have plenty at Electric Bike Report HQ that weigh over 70 lbs.

Beyond weight, there are many other important variables you’ll want to consider depending on the style of e-bike you own. Did you buy an electric fat bike? Make sure your bike rack can secure those massive tires. Did you invest in a cargo e-bike that can tote you and the kids? Make sure you look at a rack that’s long enough to fit that.

Always carefully consider your e-bike’s unique features when shopping for an e-bike car rack, but perhaps the most important electric-specific feature is a rack’s carrying capacity.

There likely will never be one car rack that does it all, but there are several car racks for electric bikes that will likely work best for your style of bike and where you plan on taking it. Listed below are our picks for the best car racks for carrying e-bikes.

The Best Bike Racks For E-Bikes, 2021

How We Picked These Bike Racks

There are tons of bike racks out there. Any attempt to sort and rank each one would be futile, but we have examined the ones that boast features we know e-bike riders will want and we’ve only listed products we would trust with our own much-loved electric bikes.

We closely evaluated these key criteria when choosing the best electric bike racks for cars, mainly:

  • Max Weight Per Bike: This is always the first place we start. Several of the e-bikes we have in our offices weigh above 60lbs, which isn’t uncommon for e-bikes. We want to make sure racks can accommodate that much weight.
  • Total Weight Capacity: Just because you see three trays on a rack doesn’t always mean the rack can carry the weight of three e-bikes. Total weight is important to consider as you don’t want to overload the tongue that inserts into the hitch.
  • Ease Of Use: Does the rack fold down easily? Do the arms secure the bikes simply? Is it intuitive to use from start to finish?
  • Where It Secures The Bike: E-bikes start around $1,000 and prices can climb upwards to $10,000 or more for high-end electric bikes. So any rack we recommend is going to protect your investment (and your car).
  • Additional Features: A quality rack that reliably transports your bike from A to B is fantastic, but some really go the extra mile. We love to see extras such as:
    • Lock Features – E-bikes aren’t cheap, so having a locking mechanism on the rack for extra safety provides great peace of mind.
    • Ramps – We’ve explained repeatedly that e-bikes are heavy. So having a ramp that removes the work of lifting the bike up on the rack is a welcome bonus.
    • Fail-Safe Measures – All bike racks should be built to withstand typical road conditions, but having redundancies for securing the bike to the rack, or the rack to the hitch is always a happy sight.

This list is the collective brainchild of the Electric Bike Report’s expert staff who each drive different cars to different types of trails and paths while hauling different styles of e-bikes. Is it perfect and all-encompassing? Probably not. But we took our different backgrounds and consciously considered as many different points of view as possible while compiling a list for you to choose from. We know that this list will be read by younger and older audiences alike, those with cars, SUVs, trucks, and more trying to find an ideal solution for getting their e-bikes around. We think this list should find at least one option that meets your needs.

Some of these bike racks we have first-hand experience with on our own cars, while others we know the manufacturer’s reputation speaks for itself, and the specs & features listed are more than sufficient to meet an e-biker’s needs.

Why are there no e-bike trunk racks or roof racks on this list?

If you haven’t yet caught our drift, weight capacity is going to be the single most important factor you consider when purchasing a car rack for your electric bike.

E-bikes, especially those on the more affordable end of the spectrum, are considerably heavier than the traditional bicycles roof and trunk racks are typically designed to handle. We’ve yet to see or test a roof or trunk-mounted bike rack that can handle the weight of most modern e-bikes (without damaging the vehicle or exceeding the rack’s maximum weight capacity), so we’ve left them off this list. The high weight of e-bike really warrants the extra security of a hitch-mounted bike rack. Plus, it’s the only type of e-bike rack made by most major bicycle rack manufacturers.

There are, of course, exceptions to this rule for extremely light high performance e-bikes that often weigh not much more than traditional bicycles. But for this list, we’re sticking to the racks built specifically for e-bikes — luckily for us e-bikers, there are now plenty to choose from.

Best Bike Racks of 2021 – Our Experts’ Top Picks

PRO TIP: While we think these car bike racks offer great weight ratings per bike, many e-bikes weigh at or above those limits. You can help make your rack/bike more safe by removing excess weight that you could fit in the trunk of your car instead. Consider removing:

  • Bike batteries
  • Pannier bags
  • Bike locks
  • Etc.

Thule T2 Pro Xt/XTR Car Bike Rack

Expandable up to 4 bike trays

Thule has been around for what feels like forever – and for good reason. The Swedish manufacturer has a clear reputation for building quality bike racks that will last you for years to come.

Thule’s T2 Po XTR is a heavy-duty bike rack that gives you ample room between bikes. It can be expanded to add up to two more bikes giving you a total of 4 trays to carry bikes with. It supports wheels up to 5” in diameter, comes with an integrated cable lock and knob locks for securing the rack to the receiver. Thanks to the HitchSwitch lever you can tilt the rack down for access through your car’s rear hatch. Thule also includes wheels you can use to easily get the rack in place for attaching it to the hitch.

Info:

  • Max bike weight: 60lbs
  • Total weight capacity: 120lbs (expandable up to 240lbs)
  • Rack weight: 52lbs
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Yakima OnRamp Car Bike Rack

Secures bikes comfortably next to each other without touching

Washington state-based manufacturer Yakima has been producing quality racks for around four decades now. They have excellent offerings on racks for whatever your outdoor adventure needs may be, but they have some particularly great bike racks.

The Yakima OnRamp can adjust to most wheels with no problem. You can also offset the bike rack trays to better arrange two bikes next to each other. Yakima even offers a limited lifetime warranty so you know they believe it’ll last for the long haul

Info:

  • Max bike weight: 60lbs
  • Total weight capacity: 120lbs
  • Rack weight: 49lbs
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Thule EasyFold XT 2 Car Bike Rack

Included ramp makes lifting the bike much easier

Thule is one of the most trusted names in the bike rack biz, and as the name of this product suggests, they make carrying an e-bike easy from the hitching process to the securing of your bike. Its compact design, good weight capacity, tilt function, foldable bike ramp and optional fat bike wheel straps make it a great option for almost any e-bike.

The Electric Bike Report team has used this rack to tote review bikes to video shoots for several months now, and we appreciate its exceptionally well designed mechanism for attaching and removing from your vehicle. We also like the small wheels that let you roll it like a suitcase when not installed on a car and the rack’s overall light weight, which makes lifting it on and off a car very easy. Despite that light weight, it still has a great 65 lb per bike carrying capacity.

Info:

  • Max bike weight: 65lbs
  • Total weight capacity: 130lbs
  • Rack weight: 45lbs
  • Limited lifetime warranty

RockyMounts BackStage Car Bike Rack

180 degree swing for easy access to your car’s backend

RockyMounts is based out of Colorado with its beginnings in bike racks dating back to 1993. The company was started when its founder, Bobby Noyes, saw a need for more versatility in car racks. That versatility is on display with the BackStage.

We love having tilt on a bike rack so we can access the rear hatch of an SUV when needed. But the RockyMounts BackStage really goes the extra mile by allowing you to get your bikes out of the way completely thanks to their swing away platform hitch rack. It also carries bikes with tires up to 5” thick and 29” diameter, and makes use of an anti-wobble system axis on 2” hitches.

Info:

  • Max bike weight: 60lbs
  • Total weight capacity: 100lbs
  • Rack weight: 59lbs
  • Anti-wobble tech

Saris Superclamp EX 2 Car Bike Rack

Lightweight rack, heavy-duty performance

Saris calls Madison, Wisconsin home and prides itself on its made in the U.S. offerings.

Many cars are equipped with smaller hitches than those found on trucks and SUVs. Those with smaller hitches are more cognizant of total weight than most. But with the Saris Superclamp EX 2, the 1¼” hitch crowd can still get a tilting bike rack with a high weight capacity of 60 lbs per bike. The rack itself only weighs 35lbs, making this a great featherweight choice for vehicles with smaller hitches.

Info:

  • Max bike weight: 60lbs
  • Total weight capacity: 120lbs
  • Rack weight: 35lbs
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Hollywood Racks Sport Rider

High-weight capacity trays are ideal for heavier e-bikes

Hollywood Racks has roots in making quality bike racks stretching back to the 70’s. They are known for making great heavy duty racks for cars, campers, trailers and more.

Made specifically with e-bikes in mind, the Hollywood Racks Sport Rider holds up to 80 lbs in each tray. That is great for cargo bikes and even accommodates tire size as large as 5” wide, folds up when not in use and has a patented No Wobble-No Tools Hitch Tightening System for 2” hitches. Say goodbye to the worry of seeing your bikes shake around in your car’s rear view mirror while on the road!

Info:

  • Max bike weight: 80lbs
  • Total weight capacity: 160lbs
  • Rack weight: 58lbs
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Yakima StageTwo

All the bells and whistles with a 60 lb carrying capacity — coming soon

We got a sneak peak at Yakima’s new StageTwo bike rack at the Big Gear Show in Park City, UT, and boy were we impressed.

It’s a bigger, stouter and more feature-rich rack from one of the biggest names in bike racks. The StageTwo can carry up to two 60 lb e-bikes and was designed with a greater emphasis on stability and user-friendliness. It’s compatible with a loading ramp — a huge plus for those heavier e-bikes — and sports integrated tail lights for greater visibility on the road. Perhaps the coolest feature is a rear wheel strap that hangs out of the way while loading, a fix for one of the more annoying nuisances of tray-style e-bike racks. This rack is expected to go on sale starting November 2021.

Info:

  • Max bike weight: 60lbs
  • Total weight capacity: 120lbs
  • Rack weight: N/A
  • Integrated tail lights

VelociRAX

No bike left behind, accommodates up to 7 bikes

Part of a new breed of hanging bike racks, the high-capacity VelociRAX can accommodate up to four e-bikes weighing up to 55 lbs with a total carrying capacity of 230 lbs. The largest model has spots for seven bikes, so depending on the weight of the bikes you’re carrying you can take the whole family plus some friends — just make sure you stay within the weight limits. They include damper-assisted hinges to lower the rack so you don’t have to lift the bike on and off. It also has a garage mounting kit to keep your bikes organized at home. Versatility like that in a bike rack is great to see.

Specs:

  • Max bike weight: 55lbs
  • Total weight capacity: 230lbs