hitch capacity

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Accessories & Modifications' started by claypot2, Aug 5, 2015.

  1. claypot2

    claypot2 Junior Member

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    We have a Saris Bones 3-bike rack that we use to haul 3 bikes. We don't feel comfortable on the highway as it seems to move a bit, no matter how tight we try to make it. Can a class 1 hitch be used to haul 3 bikes? The tongue weight capacity states 200 pounds. Does anyone know what Toyota states as a max weight?
     
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  2. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

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    I'm guessing your hitch is only attached to the car at two points, probably where the chain tie-down brackets were attached while it was on the transport. The thing to watch with a bike carrier is that it extends farther back than just where the hitch ball/trailer tongue would be of a conventional trailer. 200 lbs straight down on the hitch ball probably corresponds to 100 lbs or less out at the end of the long lever formed by your bike carrier. And nobody knows how much force it would really take to damage the body channels where the hitch attaches, because Toyota officially never said you could attach a hitch at all.

    I never saw any damage with mine, but I used to worry about unintended extra forces like somebody stepping up on the end of that lever. Finally I took my hitch off and asked a welding shop to add two more attachment points about half a meter forward (finding a couple convenient holes in the body channels there to attach to). I think the Gen 2 has some sort of reinforced central jacking point that works well for that.

    I really haven't worried about excess forces (within reason) since.

    -Chap
     
  3. claypot2

    claypot2 Junior Member

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    Thanks, I don't have a hitch yet but was wondering if it was safer than the Saris. It sounds like either way I should only carry two bikes. So for now I'll stick with the Saris.
     
  4. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    Yes, 0 pounds
     
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  5. Marcius

    Marcius New Member

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    Hi All. I installed the Curt hitch today on my 17 Prius. It's 29 lbs. I have a 52 lb bike rack for a 2" hitch that I use on my Highlander. I was hoping to get an adapter for my 1-1/2 hitch, and carry two MTB's. I think I'd be adding about 132 lbs to the hitch when all said is done. The hitch is rated for 200 lbs, but I'm more worried about the Prius. It seems pretty sketchy thinking about the "lever" action mentioned above, especially when you hit those unintended bumps on the hwy at 70 mph! Maybe I should get a lighter bike rack? I really was hoping not to take up more space in my garage, and hoping not to fork out more money for another rack. But of course, saving the Prius comes first. Does anyone have any hitch horror stories, and/or insight into this? Thank you
     
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