hitch or trunk mounted bike rack

Discussion in 'Gen III 2010+ Prius Accessories and Modifications' started by jbpersmail, Aug 1, 2011.

  1. jbpersmail

    jbpersmail Junior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    41
    2
    USA
    Vehicle:
    2011 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    i need some help deciding which way to go for a bike rack, i am not considering the roof mount because of the price. i am deciding between trunk or hitch mount.

    on the owner's manual (page 266 on the 2010, page 275 on the 2011) it states that installation of a tow hitch or the use of a tow hitch carrier for a bicycle is not recommended and that our cars are not designed for the use of hitch. yet i see lots of Prius have them.

    1. for those that installed the hitch like this one, how do you like these? any trouble installing / using them?

    2. for those that use the trunk mounted ones, how do you like these?
     
  2. Unlimited_MPG

    Unlimited_MPG Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2007
    217
    23
    Federal Way, WA
    Vehicle:
    2011 Prius
    Model:
    Five
    I just lay down the back seats and I'm able to get my road bike in without any issues. I beleive others on PriusChat here do the same. You may want to try that first before buying a bike rack unless you need the back seats or have several bikes to haul.
     
  3. indyV

    indyV Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2010
    58
    13
    NorCal
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    V
    I have a bolt on hitch for my bike rack. I didn't do the install myself but there was no cutting/welding required. It's great that I can just pop my bike on the back and not worry about taking off a wheel to fit it inside/dirty up the interior.

    Also, the hitch mounted ones are more secure than using a trunk mounted one. I had a trunk mounted rack fall off on me on my previous car.
     
  4. chevron

    chevron New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2010
    67
    0
    Rhode Island
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    II
    I use the hitch mount , easy to install yourself , if you are handy. It costs more , but I prefer it , cause its more stable & allows you carry multiple bikes if needed.
     
  5. UoD

    UoD Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2011
    82
    8
    Charleston, SC (by way of Tallahassee, FL)
    Vehicle:
    2011 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    I did a lot of research on this before buying my Prius a few weeks ago. I had a 4Runner with a nice 4 bike Yakima hitch rack.

    I was considering doing a roof rack on the Prius, but the cost and potential MPG decrease made me strike that one off of the list.

    I then considered just throwing it cargo area. This would be easy with my road bike, but my mountain bike is much bulkier (and dirtier). Even though I have the all-weather cargo mat, I hated the idea of dirtying up (and potentially scratching up) the back. I also haul 2 or 3 bikes sometimes.

    Onto the hatch mount. I have read too many stories of the straps scratching/scuffing the paint. Also, I like to have easy access to my cargo area.

    AND --- that brought me full circle to my original method of hauling a bike. Use the hitch rack. The Quality S (2", class III) hitch seems to be the hitch of choice for Gen III Prius drivers. The installation appears to be quite simple. I already have an incredibly sturdy, lockable hitch rack ..... and this frees up the cargo area while keeping the hatch usable. no worry about scratching up the inside/outside ...probably won't notice any difference in MPG. All in all ... probably the best choice.
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. ksstathead

    ksstathead Active Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2007
    1,238
    232
    Kansas
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    III
    Plus, you can use a cargo tray with the hitch when not using the bike rack. More flexible.
     
  7. Slovewell

    Slovewell New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    95
    9
    Va
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV





    I agree with you. I installed the 2 inch hitch and have no regrets. It is noticeabe to me but very functional. It is the safest way to carry your bike plus I had the car in for service and the dealer thought it looked good. The nice thing is you can remove it with no damage to the car if you change your mind.
     
  8. V8Cobrakid

    V8Cobrakid Green Handyman

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2004
    3,796
    141
    Park View, Los Angeles, CA. U.S.A
    Vehicle:
    2004 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    both tend to do a fair hit to mpg..

    i have a hitch.. i used a 4 bike rack in the past.. toted two bikes from ca to co and back. with camping gear the mileage was low... test later on with less weight showed that anything back there reduces mpg.

    people will tailgate you a little less if there are bikes on the back.. they are easy to break and nobody want to be reliable.

    bolt on is the only way to go... welding just seems excessive for what this car tows.. and i tow way more than anyone should in this car.. which reminds me that i need a scan-gauge still...
     
  9. V8Cobrakid

    V8Cobrakid Green Handyman

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2004
    3,796
    141
    Park View, Los Angeles, CA. U.S.A
    Vehicle:
    2004 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    both tend to do a fair hit to mpg..

    i have a hitch.. i used a 4 bike rack in the past.. toted two bikes from ca to co and back. with camping gear the mileage was low... test later on with less weight showed that anything back there reduces mpg.

    people will tailgate you a little less if there are bikes on the back.. they are easy to break and nobody want to be reliable.

    bolt on is the only way to go... welding just seems excessive for what this car tows.. and i tow way more than anyone should in this car.. which reminds me that i need a scan-gauge still...
     
  10. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    32,122
    5,706
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    we have the trunk/hatch mount. it's fine for occasional use, but as we bike more and more, i am definately considering a hitch. it's a lot easier on and off.
     
  11. homegameroom

    homegameroom New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2011
    37
    8
    Cleveland, OH
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    V
    I bought a hitch mount - the cheaper one - and I really like it. It's easy to install, easy to attach the rack to it and the bikes fit nicely on the (Wal-Mart $80-ish) bike rack. The whole setup wasn't too expensive and there's no worries about scratching the car up and yes, the hatch opens without hitting the bike rack when installed. It's perfect for me - YMMV.
     
  12. Sergio-PL

    Sergio-PL Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2011
    161
    43
    Poland
    Vehicle:
    2011 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    I know that it is taking thread from the past but I was wondering why in Prius PL catalogue there is a bike on the rear of the car, but manual states no towing hitch/bikes.

    I asked Toyota Europe via Twitter this week and copy is below.
    Toyota has (at least in Europe) special accessory for Prius and Auris HSD without towing hitch. I found part number here: http://newata.toyota-europe.com/

    So if someone want to travel with bike by Prius - it is possible :cheer2:
     
  13. shawnb2

    shawnb2 Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2009
    551
    103
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    V
    I would say go the way of everyone else here and do the hitch mount if you're not willing to spend the money on a roof mount. I have a Yakima trunk mount and it doesn't sit right because of the wing on the hatch. It sticks out too much and I scraped up my spoiler. Wasn't bad but still enough to piss me off. Needless to say, my bike won't be riding on the back of my car anytime soon. Will do a roof mount this summer.