Got an eBike and love to RV? Here is our list of hitch racks for ebikes.
For many of our RV Lifestyle Fellow Travelers, electric bicycles are a natural part of the RV Lifestyle. But finding the right hitch racks for ebikes can be a challenge. We have four models to suggest.
Visit any RV campground and you'll soon see that ebikes are all the rage these days.
To bring them along on their camping adventures, most RVers use hitch racks for their ebikes, or carrying racks that are attached to the RV's a rear-mounted towing hitch. Because ebikes are so heavy, the hitch rack is the only viable solution. The type of bike racks than hang on doors, fasten atop cargo carriers, or mount on rear windows just can't handle the weight of an ebike, let alone two of them as most RVers want to carry.
Based on the questions we get, finding the right hitch rack for ebikes is a topic many are interested in. So here's our list of what we think are the 4 top hitch racks for ebikes.
But first, some guidelines.
A checklist for choosing hitch racks for ebikes
You wouldn’t buy the first bike you see and the same holds true for your hitch racks for ebikes. As you begin the process of narrowing down your choices, here are several things to consider:
Build quality is essential to making a satisfactory investment. Be sure to not only review the specs online but also read customer reviews. Such reviews can offer great details about how they perform when put to the test.
eBike size and weight
Consider what kind of ebike you are going to be using ahead of time. Some hitch racks for ebikes don’t have adjustable settings, thus cannot handle longer or wider bikes. The best options are those that can be adjusted and enable you to change bikes easily.
Also, ebikes require much more robust and rugged racks than types used for traditional bikes. ebikes typically weigh around 55-65 pounds. Two of them add up to a hefty load of 120 – 130 pounds at least. Be sure to carefully match the weight of your ebikes to the rack's capacity.
Important note: Carrying two bikes adds about 12o–130 pounds. But the rack itself usually weighs as much as an ebike. So you can figure that the rack and bikes add nearly 200 pounds to your RVs carrying capacity. Make sure that you are not exceeding that when you are loading up the RV. That may mean bringing along less RV gear and cargo, or not driving with full freshwater tanks.
Number of bikes you want to carry
Different ebike loading capacities are available via the various models of hitch racks for ebikes. The most common rack models hold two ebikes.
Like everything, you get what you pay for. Knowing what you need ahead of time, however, will keep you from over- or under-spending when considering hitch racks for ebikes.
Type of hitch racks for ebikes
There are two types of hitch racks for bikes – platform and hanging. A platform rack is a bike rack where your bike’s wheels rest on the bike rack whereas the hanging rack is one in which the frame rests on the bike rack.
Because of the weight of an ebike, we do not recommend a hanging ebike. I'm not sure if there are any out there, in fact, that will handle even one ebike safely. Besides, it can be challenging to get more than one bike on a hanging rack on without the bikes touching and scraping against each other, and you’ll likely have to lift your bikes higher.
Even with regular bikes, we are not big fans of hanging bikes.
The pros of a platform bike rack include: easier to load/unload; not as high on the back of your RV; allow for many different bike styles; bikes are very secure at both the wheels and frame; no contact with other bikes on the rack/less contact between bike and rack.
In short, we recommend the platform-style hitch bike rack, as you can see from the list of great options we feature below.
Hitch racks for bikes worth considering
We use a Hollywood rack for our two Rad Power ebikes. This is the rack Jennifer and I use.
But since we got our rack, Hollywood has come up with a new model called the RV Rider that we really like a lot! It carries two ebikes (up to 80 lbs. each) on the back of an RV, a 5th wheel or a flat towed vehicle. Special features include extra heavy duty wheel holders for heavy load carrying capacity. Locking frame grabbers secure the bikes in place.
The frame grabbers can be attached to a bike's frame or seat tube with a diameter range of 1″- 2″. A locking cable and keyed alike hitch pin secure the bikes to rack and the rack to the vehicle. The bike rack folds up when not in use and can tilt down for rear cargo access when the bikes are not mounted.
A double-walled receiver tube handles the extra weight of the electric bikes. An included hitch tightener reduces motion inside the hitch (receiver hitch must have a flange). A minimum class 3 trailer hitch is required to use this bike rack. A separate receiver tube is included for use on a 5th wheel, which brings the rack 2″ closer to the vehicle.
This is the first of several offerings from Swagman that carry the company’s “RV-approved” status. The Escapee is RV Approved for use on the back of 5th wheels and camper trailers to get your ebikes where you are going.
With a maximum weight capacity of 60 lbs. per bike, compatible with tires up to 3″ wide and zero frame contact, the Escapee securely holds the ebikes in place with the hook on the front wheel next to the fork. The rack also comes with a 5/8” threaded locking hitch pic and locking ratcheting arms with replaceable keys to help prevent bike theft. The rack weighs 62 lbs.
It is not often a hitch mount bike rack is RV Approved yet comes with everyday functionality when used on a passenger vehicle. The E-Spec can be used on a 2-inch hitch receiver and is capable of carrying two e-bikes with a weight capacity of 70lbs. per bike.
The E-Spec comes with locking ratchet hooks and locking hitch pin to keep your prized possessions safe. As an added bonus, you can fold it up against the rear of your RV when not in use. The rack weighs 63 lbs.
This one comes with a price tag of nearly $800 but it does have a lot to offer: it can carry two 65 pound ebikes; has shock/vibration protection technology; anti-rattle hitch; and rust-proof design.
Other features include a locking clamp, foldability, ratcheting straps, oversized reflectors, and independent arms that can carry bikes at different heights. The rack itself weighs 45 lbs.
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