Anyone using the Thule T2 4 bike rack or another 4 bike hitch rack?

Discussion in 'Prius v Accessories and Modifications' started by lrisius, Nov 21, 2015.

  1. lrisius

    lrisius Member

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    I've got 2015 Prius v with a 2" Torklift Eco-Hitch and am using a Thule T2 916 XTR 2 bike hitch with it. This combination feels rock solid. I'm considering adding the 2 bike extension (918 XTR) to it so I can haul 4 bikes.

    Is anyone using this 4 bike rack? I'm concerned about overloading the frame/mounting points on the v with the extra weight. The extra rack adds maybe 50 pounds plus the bikes which isn't extremely heavy but the leverage of the additional length concerns me. I've tried searching on Priuschat but couldn't find anyone using it.

    Thanks!
     
  2. iplug

    iplug Senior Member

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    That's right. It's the tongue weight that's the problem. Not sure how the Prius v compares to the standard Prius in this regard, but the extension with four bikes is not recommended for the standard Prius or plug-in.

    I have the Thule T2 on my Plug-in Prius.
     
  3. lrisius

    lrisius Member

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    One of the challenges in figuring this out is that nothing is recommended. Toyota says no hitch mounted bike racks. I talked to Torklift and they said to go with the manufacturer's capacity recommendation. So we have no recommendations. The two bike rack seems to work great but I am concerned whether 4 goes beyond the practical limits.
     
  4. lrisius

    lrisius Member

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    Bumping to hopefully get some more data points at a different time of the week. I broadened the title to include any 4 bike hitch mount rack.

    To summarize, I've got 2015 Prius v with a 2" Torklift Eco-Hitch and am using a Thule T2 916 XTR 2 bike hitch with it. This combination feels rock solid. I'm considering adding the 2 bike extension (918 XTR) to it so I can haul 4 bikes. I really need to get to a four bike capacity if possible. I'm adding maybe 80-100 pounds and a lot of leverage. I tried contacting Torklift and their response was basically "follow the manufacturer's recommendation" which is don't mount a rack.

    Is anyone successfully using anything like this? I see people doing lots of "un-recommended" towing and racks around here and wanted to get a sense of what is realistically possible.

    Thanks!
     
  5. Offline

    Offline Active Member

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    I suppose you could carry two bikes on a roof rack and two bikes on a hitch rack. Toyota dealers in Europe sell both rack types for the Prius+ / Prius v.

    Click on the Accessories button and then on the Exterior button at Toyota Prius+ A car that stands out.

    I distinctly remember that Toyota Europe sold trailer hitches for the Prius+ and touted its towing capability during its first year on the market. The same hitch mount bike rack that was sold then now "attaches to bracket specifically developed for vehicles without towing capacity and will securely carry two bicycles".
     
  6. lrisius

    lrisius Member

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    Thanks for the link. It was fun to see those. I especially like the "attaches to bracket specifically developed for vehicles without towing capacity" line. You think the liability lawyers had anything to do with that label?
     
  7. Offline

    Offline Active Member

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    I agree with your lawyer comment. The humorous aspect is that the "Stand alone bicycle holder" bracket for the Prius+ (Prius v) is really a tow bar / trailer hitch - complete with electrical connections that work with both bike rack tail lights and trailer lights used in Europe.

    If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck and looks like a duck, then it probably is a duck.

    The bicycle holder itself fits both the Prius+ "Stand alone bicycle holder" bracket and regular European code tow bars of the type sold for other Toyota models.

    It is "interesting" that Toyota suddenly decided that the Prius+ and Lexus CT200h had no towing capability when both vehicles were originally marketed as being able to tow light loads such as a jet ski.

    Edit: I have been trying to provide links to the installation instructions on the Toyota Europe service information website but Prius Chat does not seem to accept the links.
     
  8. pfjmarina

    pfjmarina Junior Member

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    I'm getting ready to install the Curt 1-1/4" hitch on my 2013 Prius v (hitch is supposed to show up today) and have a Thule Vertec 4 bike hitch rack on order. On some of the other forums people have said they've had no problem carrying 4 bikes on either the Prius hatchback or the v. Curt also sells a strap that is recommended with bike racks. It attaches to the top of the bike rack and clips in to the top of the rear hatch thus reducing torque on the hitch itself. I'll post pics. after I get it all installed if anyone is still interested.
     
  9. lrisius

    lrisius Member

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    OP here. Please do post the pics. I'm still working on what to do. The Vertex looks like it would be less weight than the rack I have. I think my rack alone would be around 100 lbs if I get the 4 bike extension. The strap is an interesting idea.
     
  10. pfjmarina

    pfjmarina Junior Member

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    Installed the hitch on my prius v last night. Very easy install. Only took about 20-30 minutes. I don't have a delivery date for the bike rack yet, but will post pictures when I get it. In looking at bike racks I did see that Thule offers one called the Helium that only weighs about 20 lbs. That's about half the weight of most others. The downside is that it will only carry three bikes and is expensive (around $400).
     
  11. pfjmarina

    pfjmarina Junior Member

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    carrier1.jpg carrier1.jpg Finally got the Thule Vertex bike rack installed. Here are a couple of pics. with the strap attachment recommended by Curt for any bike rack using their hitch. I have used the rack just a couple of times for short (< 10 mile) trips with only a single bike attached; once using the strap and once without. I did notice that with the strap there was a bit less movement of the rack. I do have some concerns about what the strap might do to the paint on the roof of the car on longer trips. I will probably try and fine some foam/neoprene or something similar to protect the paint. On sedans where the strap attaches to the back of the trunk and doesn't contact the paint this would not be a problem.
     

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  12. lrisius

    lrisius Member

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    Thanks for posting. That looks like it should work pretty well. The strap should help a lot. My T2 is the type of hitch that holds the bike by the wheels so I'm not sure how the strap would work since the attachment point would be much lower but I may be able to take the concept and adapt it.
     
  13. Offline

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    The Pro-Series Eclipse 4-bike 2-inch hitch rack is especially light, sturdy and inexpensive:
    Pro Series - Bike Carrier - Tilting - Hitch Mount


    It weighs about 30 pounds. I think I paid $99 including shipping when I bought it from etrailer.com during a promotion in 2014 and it is also available from Amazon.

    We use this rack on our Toyota Sienna and I assume that it would work with a 2-inch Torklift hitch or with an adapter on a 1 1/4 inch hitch. Adapter bars might be needed to carry some women's and kid's bikes but those don't cost much - $17.99 at Target and Amazon.

    An aspect of this rack that I particularly like is the way its threaded pin secures it to the hitch receiver. Although it is a little unhandy to use a socket wrench to install the pin, the result is an absolutely rigid connection. The rack doesn't "shake" at all when the vehicle is moving like my previous hitch rack did. The threaded hitch pin accepts a key lock of the type used on a locking pin for a 1 1/4 hitch receiver.

    Another nice aspect of the Pro-Series rack is that it doesn't take up much space to store. We have a relatively small garage and this rack sticks out only 8 1/4 inches (I just measured) when leaned against the garage side wall.

    I've had bike racks of all mounting types over the past 50 years and the Pro-Series is the biggest "bang for the buck" I've bought.
     
    #13 Offline, Mar 12, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2016
    Dimon42 likes this.
  14. Norcal2

    Norcal2 Junior Member

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    I use a Kuat NV 4 bike rack with a modified curt hitch with a 2 inch receiver beefed up no problems and no straps I extended my hitch tube out to the edge of the bumper so the length is a bit stronger and beefed up...
     
  15. -Ian-

    -Ian- New Member

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    I just wanted to chime in here, as I have been trying to find a solution to haul a family's worth of bikes behind our 13 Prius V.

    I found a blog post from someone with a Prius V who found a solution using a TorkLift 2" receiver.

    So I reached out to the folks at TorkLift and indeed they make a 2" receiver ecohitch for the Prius/Prius V/and Prius plug in. It is mounted with additional brackets 2 at the frame, and 2 at the bumper support. They were super helpful and appear to hand make the hitches in Washington state.

    My hitch arrived last night and my Yakima Full Tilt 4 last week. I can follow up with some thoughts, impressions, and photos on the setup if you like. I don't think I should have any issues with this setup seeing as the FullTilt is rated for 150 lbs, and TorkLift receiver is rated for 350-380 (not 100% as I am at work).

    Edit:
    I will include links if needed once I am able. Been reading here for a while but just registered
     
  16. -Ian-

    -Ian- New Member

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    Got the hitch and Yakima FullTilt 4 installed after work, I will follow up with some info and photos after a few days with it. Should have it loaded up this weekend. I am quite confident you will be fine with the torklift 2" after installing mine tonight.
     
  17. av8erdunn

    av8erdunn Junior Member

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    Well, what's your thoughts? Pics? I too need to haul 4 bikes.
     
  18. MamaBike

    MamaBike New Member

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    What did you wind up doing? I'm looking to get a hitch and install a 4 bike rack.
     
  19. MamaBike

    MamaBike New Member

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    What did you wind up doing ? Are you happy with the results? pics?
     
  20. MamaBike

    MamaBike New Member

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    Any updates on this? Looking to add a hitch and 4 bikes on a 2013 Prius
     
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