Best Overall Bike Rack
Thule T2 Pro XT
This is the one. The Thule T2 Pro XT
. Without a doubt, this is the best all-around product in our test group. It was the highest scoring product in nearly every category and is everything we had hoped a rack could be, and then some. Ergonomics are excellent, with the lowest loading height of any rack in the review. Everything is well thought out, down to the extra wide wheel trays and ratcheting arms, giving fat bike enthusiasts a viable hitch mount option. The mark of a game-changing product is offering the consumer something they never knew they needed. For years we have all been stoked on our hitch mounted rack's ability to tilt down, but moving the control for the feature truly changes the entire experience and the ease with which the rack can be tilted down, making access to the rear of your vehicle easier than ever. Add on the tool-free attachment (trust us, you will not miss fiddling with a threaded hitch pin and lock) and you have a winner.
Top Pick for a Roof Rack
Kuat has improved upon the tried and true design of the Kuat Trio
fork mount rack. Gone are the days of needing an additional adaptor to hold your mountain bike with a through axle. Kuat has come up with an innovative solution that can hold bikes with any axle standard at the fork. It comes out of the box ready to handle your 9mm, 15mm, and 20mm forks. An additional adaptor can be purchased to accommodate the wider fork spacing of fat bikes and plus bikes. The Trio mounts to almost any cross bars, using a U-bolt style clamp. It also has a handy cutaway for clearance of disc brake calipers. Top it all off with a cable lock that extends from the back of the rack and you have the most versatile, secure, and easy to load rook rack on the market.
Top Pick for a Trunk Rack
Thule Raceway Pro 9001
The Thule Raceway Pro 9001
is our Top Pick trunk mounted bike rack. It is the only trunk mount rack in our test group that uses rubber coated steel cables for mounting rather than nylon straps. The steel cables increase durability and are easily adjusted to length and tightened with built-in, user-friendly knobs. Setup is easy, using the Thule Fit Guide that has a number designated for each compatible vehicle. The Fit Dial on the rack is then turned to the corresponding number and the optimum support arm angle for your vehicle is set; no guesswork. The support arms are adjustable in both angle and lateral spread, which increases the ability to carry a variety of frame types and sizes. The Raceway Pro is also the only trunk mount in the test group that comes with a retractable cable lock.
Best Bang for the Buck
The RockyMounts JetLine
is the winner of our Best Buy award. At $130 list price, it is not the cheapest bike rack in our test group, but you get a lot for your money. The JetLine is a roof top, fork mount rack. It will fit both Thule, Yakima, Aero, and many factory crossbars with the included hardware. The quick release lever is easy to manipulate and will clamp any bicycle fork with 9mm dropouts. With the addition of the Drive Shaft (through axle) adapter ($69.95) from RockyMounts, the rack can hold bikes equipped with 15mm and 20mm through axles. The tray has a cutout to accommodate disk brake calipers and a sliding, ratcheting strap to secure the rear wheel. If you wish to lock it, the JetLine requires two lock cores ($19.95, not included), one to secure the rack to the vehicle and one to lock the quick release lever securing the bike. The JetLine is a great buy and offers security and versatility, along with add-on parts you can purchase as funds permit.