- In A Hurry? After 32 Hours Of Research, The Winner Is...
- Best Electric Bike Racks Compared
- Top 7 Best Electric Bike Racks Reviewed
- The Types Of Bike Racks For Electric Bikes
- Factors To Consider When Purchasing A Bike Rack For Your E-Bike
So, you've finally got yourself that e-bike you've dreamed of, and now you're ready to go exploring; this is the perfect time to get yourself a bike rack for your car.
The electric bike rack market is anything but lacking in options. However, it's critical to find a model that can handle the extra weight and bulk that comes with electric bikes.
Most bike racks are built with traditional bikes in mind, which means they can't handle weights over 50 pounds. That is a serious issue because most e-bikes often weigh over 50 pounds. What's more, there are more than plenty of electric bikes that weigh well over 70 pounds.
Besides the weight, there are quite a few other factors you need to consider when looking for the best e-bike rack for your needs. For instance, if you're planning on transporting fat-tire bikes, you'll need to get a rack that can secure massive tires.
Finding the right bike rack can be quite daunting. Thankfully, you have us!
In this article, we've reviewed some of the best bike racks for e-bikes on the market. What's more, we've also prepared a comprehensive buyer's guide that'll make you an e-bike rack expert in less than 10 minutes!
In A Hurry? After 32 Hours Of Research, The Winner Is...
Best Electric Bike Racks Compared
Max Weight Capacity
Top 7 Best Electric Bike Racks Reviewed
Below, you'll find our picks for the best car racks for electric bikes. We made sure to include a wide array of different models so that you get a better idea of what the bike rack market has to offer.
If you end up not liking our picks, you can always check out our buyer's guide - and become an expert in bike carriers yourself.
Thule is a Swedish company that's been around for quite a long time. This company manufacturers some of the best e-bike carriers in the world. An excellent example of what this company can do is the Thule T2 Pro XT car bike rack.
- Max electric bike weight: 60 lbs
- Total weight capacity: 120 lbs (60 lbs per bike)
- Rack weight: 52 lbs
Thule rack is incredibly durable and will surely last you for years to come. And even if it breaks, it's covered by a limited lifetime warranty!
This rack can hold up to two 60-pound e-bikes for a maximum load capacity of 120 pounds. What's more, it supports tires up to 5 inches wide and wheels that are up to 29 inches. That means you can safely transport both your road and fat-tire e-bikes on it.
Unfortunately, the Thule rack doesn't come with a loading ramp. That said, loading and unloading bikes shouldn't be that hard because you won't have to lift them more than just a couple of inches.
The ebike rack locks your cargo tightly in place and reliably keeps the bikes from moving while in transport, thanks to the long arms that lock the bikes in place.
- Easy to store and move around thanks to rolling wheels
- Features an integrated cable lock that secures the rack to the hitch receiver
- Can fit both road and fat-tire e-bikes
- Doesn't come with a loading ramp
- The cable locks are a bit short
- Assembly can be difficult
The second model on our list is another awesome hitch bike rack. The RockyMounts Backstage electric bike rack is built to withstand just about everything you throw at it - and it comes with a couple of unique features that make it extremely easy to use.
- Max electric bike weight: 60 lbs
- Total weight capacity: 100 lbs
- Rack weight: 59 lbs
RockyMounts Backstage is the only platform bike rack that can swing out 180 degrees. So, if you need unimpeded access to your trunk at all times, this is the right product for you.
This heavy-duty rack doesn't just swing - it also twists, too! The backstage can tilt downwards at 30 degrees, so you can access your car's rear hatch with ease.
Loading and unloading electric bicycles from this is incredibly simple. There's an industrial-strength ratchet arm that holds the rear wheel, and a large foldable cup supports the front wheel while the large vertical ratchet arm holds it in place.
This rack is compatible with both road and fat-tire bikes and is incredibly secure. It features a heavy-duty locking cable with two hitch pin locks.
The RockyMounts Backstage is compatible with any 2-inch car or trailer hitch and can only carry up to two electric bikes. And unfortunately, there are no upgrades available to expand it.
Still, because of all the cool features, this is one of the best electric bike carriers you can find on the market.
- Features a 180-degree tilt and 30-degree twist
- East to load and unload electric bikes
- Easy cargo access
- Folds flat against your vehicle when it's not in use
- The tilt feature is a bit finicky when the rack is fully loaded
- Awkward to store and install because of how heavy it is
If you're looking for a heavy-duty but lightweight car rack, Saris Superclamp EX 2 should be on your shopping list. As you're about to see, it's super-easy to install - and easy to operate, too.
- Max electric bike weight: 60 lbs
- Total weight capacity: 120 lbs (60 lbs per bike)
- Rack weight: 35 lbs
Saris Superclamp EX 2 is the lightest rack on the market. So, it's perfect for anyone that has a car that features a smaller hitch.
Seriously, if your car has a 1.25-inch hitch, this rack is a godsend.
Besides being incredibly lightweight, this electric bike rack also tilts 30 degrees, so you can access your trunk when the rack is loaded.
Just because it's lightweight, that doesn't mean this is not a heavy-duty rack. The Saris Superclamp EX 2 can handle just about any type of road without any wobble. And even if it breaks somehow, their car rack is covered by a limited lifetime warranty.
This car rack can carry up to two electric bicycles at once and is quite secure to boot. Saris included a set of keys and a lock so you can secure the rack in place and features an integrated locking cable that will prevent anyone from stealing your bikes.
When it comes to compatibility, this car rack is compatible with just about every bike out there. So, whether you need to transport kids bikes, road, or fat-tire e-bikes, the Superclamp can do it.
- Incredibly lightweight
- Compatible with both road and fat-tire e-bikes
- Easy to install
- Can only carry up to two e-bikes
- Wobbles a bit when driving over exceptionally rough terrain
Hollywood Racks has been around for a long time - ever since the early 70s. During its fifty-year existence, this company has earned a positive reputation for producing heavy-duty racks for cars, trailers, and everything else in between.
And the Hollywood Racks Sport Rider is no exception.
This product is a godsend if you have electric bikes that weigh well over 60 pounds.
- Max electric bike weight: 80 lbs
- Total weight capacity: 160 lbs (80 lbs per bike)
- Rack weight: 58 lbs
Hollywood Racks Sport Rider isn't your everyday rack. This one is specially designed with electric bikes in mind:
The engineers at Hollywood Racks were well aware that your standard electric bike weighs anywhere between 40 and 90 pounds. That is why the max carrying weight of the Sport Rider is whopping 160 pounds.
You can easily transport cargo bikes with this rack - and since it's compatible with tires up to 5-inches wide, you can also transport fat-tire e-bikes.
Installing the Hollywood Bike Rack is a breeze and takes less than half an hour. But, because it's on the heavy side, you will have some trouble holding it in place while mounting it.
It's important to note that the Sport Rider is compatible with only 2-inch hitches.
Loading and unloading your precious cargo is incredibly simple. To load your heavy e-bikes, place them on the wheel tray and secure the straps around the wheels. Once that's done, there are swing leavers that lock on the middle tube.
Hollywood Racks Sport Ride also comes with a locking cable you can use to secure your electric bikes from theft.
- Excellent for carrying bikes that are over 6 pounds
- Quick and simple to install
- Can sway so you can access your trunk
- Compatible with both thin and fat-tire electric bikes
- Installation can be a pain because of high weight
Yakima is a Washington-based car rack manufacturer that's been around for decades - and they have excellent racks for just about any type of adventure you have in mind.
The OnRamp model is one of their latest platform racks that comes with everything you need to carry your electric bikes anywhere you go.
- Max electric bike weight: 66 lbs
- Total weight capacity: 132 lbs
- Rack weight: 57 lbs
While other racks come with one-size-fits-all wheel trays, the engineers at Yakima tried a different approach:
To ensure your electric bikes are as secure as possible, this hitch-mount rack comes with different frame attachments for different bikes. Depending on what type of electric bike you're transporting, you can use different attachments to ensure it stays in place no matter what.
Another cool feature this hitch mount rack comes with is a ramp. That makes loading and unloading your heavy e-bikes a breeze - because you can simply ride the bike to the bike tray and secure it.
When it comes to compatibility, out of the box, this car rack can accommodate tires up to 4.5 inches wide. If you have an e-bike with fat tires, you will have to get a FatStrap Kit that's sold separately.
For security, the Yakima comes with a heavy cable that goes around both bikes and locks the hitch pin end.
Our only gripe with this rack is that it's awkward to install because of how heavy it is. That is why we recommend you find someone to help you so that you don't end up hurting your back.
- Compatible with all types of electric bikes
- Can carry heavy e-bikes
- Unlike other racks, it comes with a loading ramp
- Tilts forward for easy trunk access
- Awkward to install because of the weight
- You need to get an adapter for fat tires
Kuat is a relatively young US-based car rack manufacturer that has an excellent track record of producing high-quality, heavy-duty bike racks. And their NV 2.0 bike rack is no exception.
- Max electric bike weight: 60 lbs
- Total weight capacity: 120 lbs
- Rack weight: 52 lbs
Kuat Racks NV 2.0 is available in 1.25 and 2-inch hitch receiver options and can fit a wide range of cars and trucks. The installation is quick, simple, and completely tool-less.
If you're a serious electric bike enthusiast, you'll be delighted to know that this rack comes with a pivot system that gently drops with a tap of a foot and a stand that allows you to do on-the-spot repairs.
If you're a proud owner of a fat-tire bike, this rack should be your go-to choice because it's compatible with it out of the box.
If you, however, own a road electric bike, you will have to buy an adapter.
Loading and unloading bikes will be as easy as pie, thanks to the inbuilt ramp. So, instead of lifting a heavy e-bike, you can simply wheel it on and be done with it.
Once you've secured the bike in place, you secure them with tire scoops for a secure fit. On top of that, co-molded rear tire straps provide additional protection.
And for added security, the Kuat features locking cables with a locking hitch pin, too.
- The ramp makes loading and unloading easy
- Features a locking hitch pin and a locking cable for added security
- Can transport bikes as heavy as 60 pounds
- Only accepts fat-tire bikes out of the box
- You must buy add-ons if you want to expand the versatility
Planning on transporting four bikes at a time? Not many e-bike carriers can do that.
One such carrier is the KAC Overdrive Sports K4. Out of the box, it can carry up to four bikes - no add-ons needed!
- Max electric bike weight: 60 lbs
- Total weight capacity: 240 lbs
- Rack weight: 79 lbs
Besides allowing you to carry lots of bikes, this rack is also incredibly versatile:
Not only is it compatible with regular e-bikes, but also with fat-tire bikes, kids' bikes, and everything else in between.
Versatility doesn't end there, though. If you don't need to transport all four bikes, you can easily convert this rack to carry just two.
The only thing we don't like about this rack is that it isn't compatible with step-through bikes out of the box. Thankfully, there is an adapter you can buy for a few extra bucks.
With a maximum supported wheelbase of 54 inches, you can transport just about any type of e-bike in the world.
Once loaded, you secure your bikes in place with safety straps, while the anti-wobble mechanism reduces slack and unwanted movement while you're driving.
Thanks to the locking hitch pin, you won't have to worry about someone stealing your rack while you're away from your vehicle. And for extra security, the top arm adjustment knob features a lock that will prevent thieves from running away with your e-bikes.
- Compatible with most regular and electric bikes
- Can be easily converted into a two-bike rack
- Can accommodate bikes with fenders
- Can't be used on a trailer hitch
- Requires an add-on for Y-frame and step through bikes
- Tricky to install due to the weight
The Types Of Bike Racks For Electric Bikes
While your e-bike might be an excellent way to get from point A to point B, sometimes you'll have to transport it with your car to get to the destination more quickly and easily. And that's where bike racks come in handy.
There are four types of bike mounting systems you can install on your car:
- Trunk mount
- Roof mount
- Hitch mount
- Spare tire mount
Each of these different types of ebike racks has a few variations on the theme - which we'll touch upon in this section.
Before heading out and buying a bike rack, it's essential to consider how often you will use it, vehicle compatibility, and the number of electric bicycles you'll be transporting.
Trunk-mounted e-bike racks are the least expensive types of racks. They're designed to rest on the back of your car's trunk with straps securing it in place. You secure your e-bike to it by using arms and cradles.
We recommend you get a trunk-mounted rack if you're a recreational e-biker. Unlike other e-bike racks, these ones are compatible with most cars.
Trunk-mounted racks are also very lightweight, highly portable, and easy to store. And with a little practice, you'll have no problems mounting it - and taking it off - in just a couple of minutes.
Unfortunately, a trunk-mounted rack comes with a few serious cons.
These ebike racks often have very limited carrying capacity - up to two or three bikes max. And once you mount the e-bikes, you don't have access to your trunk.
What's more, the effectiveness of this rack solely relies on how well you secure the straps. If you do it poorly, the bikes will shift and sway while you're driving.
A trunk-mounted rack also makes it difficult to lock the bikes. If you're concerned about security, we recommend you avoid these types of racks.
Yakima has a bike rack that tilts forward when fully loaded so that you can access your trunk. Keep this feature in mind if you're considering this type of rack.
Hitch-Mounted Bike Racks
Hitch racks are usually designed to carry anywhere from two to five e-bikes.
These racks come in two flavors:
- Platform hitch rack - They feature a platform on which you can sit your e-bikes. The main advantage of platform racks is that they're the easiest and most secure way to load your e-bikes and keep them securely in place. The main disadvantage to these racks is that they're typically quite heavy, which makes carrying and storing a hassle.
- Hanging bike racks - These are less expensive than the above-mentioned racks. You secure your bikes by hanging them on the rack. The main advantage of this e-bike rack is that it's relatively lightweight and has lots of ground clearance. The main disadvantage is that it allows the bikes to sway - which could result in chipped paint.
When buying a hitch-mounted bike rack, it's critical you check the tongue load capacity of your car's hitch. Depending on the hitch class, too much load could cause it to bend - or even break.
Hitch-mounted bike racks offer quite a few advantages. For starters, they're incredibly easy to install. Second, they're much sturdier than trunk-mounted e-bike racks. As such, hitch racks are excellent for frequent users.
If you end up not needing the rack for a longer period, you can unmount the hitch rack just as easily as a trunk rack.
They're also great security-wise because many hitch-mounted racks come with locks or are compatible with a simple cable lock.
One major drawback to hitch-mounted e-bike racks is that they're on the expensive side - this is especially true for platform-style racks. There are less expensive racks out there, but they don't allow you to access your trunk.
Hitch racks that can carry up to five e-bikes are also very heavy, and you'll need to learn how to drive so that your bikes don't sway.
Read more: Can you take e-bike on a plane?
Roof-Mounted Electric Bike Racks
If you don't mind lifting a 50 or 60-pound e-bike on top of your car, roof racks are an excellent option if you're serious about e-biking.
Although these racks start at a moderate price point, the price can quickly rise when you start adding multiple cradles - or if you're building a whole mounting system from scratch.
Most cars and trucks already come with factory rails that feature mounting points or crossbars for securing a rack for electric bikes. If you don't have factory-installed mounting points, don't worry:
You can easily build your own using roof rack manufacturer specifications.
A roof rack is more than just good for hauling lightweight e-bikes. You can convert them to transport all types of cargo - from small boats to skis and cargo boxes.
The major advantage of roof racks is that they don't impede access to your car's trunk or interior. Roof racks are also quite versatile because they allow you to carry all kinds of other cargo.
The biggest disadvantage to roof racks is that they require you to lift heavier electric bikes on the top of your roof. If you're short or can't easily lift 60 pounds above your head, getting a roof rack is a bad idea.
Roof racks are also more difficult to remove than roof-mounted or hitch-mounted racks.
Lastly, these ebike racks produce some wind resistance and noise - which could impact your gas mileage.
Spare Tire Mount Rack
Spare tire racks are very similar to trunk-mounted racks. They're both relatively inexpensive, and quick, and easy to install. They're also an excellent choice for casual e-bike owners.
These car racks rest on the tire or screw in securely to the spare tire mount.
The biggest advantage to these car racks is that they're quick and easy to install. And, as mentioned already, they're also very affordable when compared to other options.
These racks are only capable of holding up to two e-bikes. On top of that, you have to remove the tire covers - which is an inconvenience, to say the least.
A fully loaded spare tire e-bike rack adds a few feet to the overall length of your car or truck. That's why it's critical to be extra cautious when maneuvering in tight spaces.
Factors To Consider When Purchasing A Bike Rack For Your E-Bike
If you don't know much about car racks, finding the right e-bike rack for your needs can be tedious. In this section, you'll learn everything you need to become an e-bike rack expert!
Now, because e-bikes generally weigh more than regular bikes, you must pay close attention to the rack's maximum weight rating. You might get a bike rack that can hold up to five bikes, but when you factor in the weight, it could turn out that it can only safely hold up to two e-bikes.
And if you ride mountain e-bikes, you have to find a rack that has a system that can support extra wide tiers.
Thankfully, there are a few dedicated ebike racks on the market - such as the one from Thule - and more are on the way as e-bikes rise in popularity.
Here are some crucial factors you need to consider when looking for an ideal rack for your needs.
The essential factor to consider when buying an electric bike rack is your budget.
Your budget dictates which style of rack you can get. If you don't have a lot of money to spend, you can go for a tunk or spare tire rack. Remember that they have a limited max weight capacity, though - usually around 30 pounds.
If you have a higher budget, getting a hitch-mounted e-bike rack is your best option. These racks can handle more weight and more bikes.
Width Of E-Bike Tires
Road e-bikes feature slim tires and will easily mount on just about any bike carrier. However, if you're planning on transporting e-MTBs or hybrid bikes, you'll have to consider the width of your tires.
Some mountain bikes feature very wide tires that can't fit into standard wheel trays. If you're a proud owner of such bikes, you'll have to get a specialist bike carrier that is purpose-built to accommodate tire widths that are larger than normal.
Most racks for e-bikes are compatible with fat tires out of the box. However, there are quite a few rack models out there that require you get an add-on. These add-ons can cost anywhere from $50 up to a couple of hundred dollars.
So, before making the final decision, double-check whether the rack you're interested in supports fat tires from the get-go.
Virtually all car racks come with a recommended weight capacity per bike. That all depends on the style of rack you're planning to get - but, generally speaking, most roof and trunk racks have a max weight capacity of around 30 pounds per bike.
Hitch racks are usually stronger - and can fit bikes that are as heavy as 70 pounds.
Number Of Bikes You're Planning On Transporting
A single roof rack can carry only a single e-bike. However, you can fit two or three bikes if you have a large vehicle and get multiple roof racks to mount side by side.
Tunk e-bike racks can usually carry up to three e-bikes, while hitch racks can carry as much as four.
If you're planning on carrying more than two e-bikes at one time, we recommend you go with a hitch rack, though. High-end hitch racks can carry up to four bikes at a time - with a max weight capped at 240 pounds.
Regular car racks can fit most road, hybrid, and mountain e-bikes. With that said, bikes with long wheelbases may have issues fitting to the length of the wheel trays.
You can buy an adapter to help mitigate this problem, but you can also get adapter beams that can fit your seat post and headset for easier mounting.
Another crucial thing to note here is:
If you transport an e-bike with a long wheelbase, the wheels will stick out from each side of your vehicle.
How Often Do You Travel?
If you're planning to use the rack frequently, you'll want to get a model that's easy to use. For instance, a roof rack is ideal for securing your e-bikes so that they're out of the way. Plus, you won't have to worry about reversing or parking - and you'll have full access to your trunk.
However, because the rack is high up, it'll be a nightmare getting the e-bikes up. That's why hitch racks are a more convenient solution for those dealing with heavier bikes.
How Far Will You Travel?
Air drag can impact your gas mileage. If you and your bikes are heading to the highlands for the weekend, a roof rack isn't your best option.
For long distances, getting a hitch rack is your best option because it won't produce as much air drag.
Does Your Car Have Plastic Spoilers?
If your car has a metal sheet rear spoiler, you won't have any troubles mounting a trunk rack.
But if your car has a plastic rear spoiler, you will have trouble - because it won't be able to support the combined weight of the bike carrier and e-bikes.
Do You Need A Lightboard?
Before buying a bike carrier, you need to figure out whether you need a light board or not. Your license plate and rear lights need to be visible at all times. Some bike carriers might block them out, which will get you in trouble with the police.
In that case, you'll have to get a lightboard.
Don't install the lightboard on your e-bikes, though, because that's illegal. Install it onto the rack itself, instead.
When it comes to transporting electric bikes, we don't recommend you use anything but hitch racks. That is because they're currently the only type of rack that can withstand that much load.
The most durable and heavy-duty roof and trunk racks can have a weight capacity of just around 50 pounds.
With that out of the way, we can get to recommendations!
If you're looking for the best electric bike rack for your car, look no further than the Thule T2 Pro Xt/XTR. Yes, it can only fit two bikes at a time - but it offers a perfect blend of security features, durability, and price.
If you're looking for a rack that'll allow you to access your trunk, we recommend that you go with the Saris Superclamp EX2. Not only does this rack tilt, but it can also sway to the side, giving you full access to your car's trunk.
Last update on 2022-12-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API