10 Best Bike Racks for Electric Bikes in 2023: Reviews & Top Picks
Electric bikes offer a simple and convenient way of getting around. They are useful for commuting or general riding around town, but they can also be a great way to spend some time away from the house. Whether you’re planning a day trip or want to take your electric bike away on vacation with you, transporting these potentially mammoth vehicles can be difficult. Standard bike racks aren’t equipped to cope with the weight or the size of most e-bikes. Fortunately, there is a growing list of racks that will take the load.
Below, we have included reviews of 10 of the best bike racks for electric bikes this year, including some with a weight capacity of as much as 80 pounds per bike.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites (2023 Update)
|Best Overall||Hollywood Racks Sport Rider for Electric Bikes||
|Best Value||KAC K4 2” Hitch Mounted Rack 4-Bike Platform Carrier||
|Premium Choice||Saris Door County Hitch Rack with Electric Lift||
|Kuat Racks NV 2.0 Bike Rack||
|RockyMounts BackStage Bicycle Rack||
The 10 Best Bike Racks for Electric Bikes
1. Hollywood Racks Sport Rider for Electric Bikes – Best Overall
|Weight Capacity:||2 x 80 pounds|
|Dimensions:||37 x 22 x 8 inches|
Electric bikes can take many different forms, from those that look like standard bicycles but with a small motor attached to cargo bikes that are designed to carry you and cargo (including kids). There are also those with big, fat tires designed for off-roading and use on challenging terrain.
The Hollywood Racks Sport Rider for Electric Bikes is a bike rack designed to hold any type of electric bike. It has two trays that are big enough to hold cargo bikes and this is further supported by a weight capacity of 80 pounds per tray. It will also accept tires up to 5 inches wide and it can be hitched without the use of any tools, so it is easy to use.
Considering its flexibility and range, the Hollywood Racks Sport Rider for Electric Bikes is very well priced, too, and is our choice as the best available bike rack for electric bikes. However, you may need adapters if you have 20-inch tires or a derailleur. These aren’t included in the package and do cost extra.
2. KAC K4 2” Hitch Mounted Rack 4-Bike Platform Carrier – Best Value
|Weight Capacity:||4 x 60 pounds|
|Dimensions:||60.67 x 60.55 x 40.59 inches|
The Hollywood Rocks is very well priced, but if you are on a tighter budget, the KAC K4 2” Hitch Mounted Rack comes in either a 2-bike or 4-bike model. The 2-bike model is good quality and costs less than the Hollywood Rocks, although its capacity per bike is slightly less. It will still hold 60-pound bikes, but you may need more if you have a cargo bike.
However, KAC also has a 4-bike option. It has the same 60-pound bike weight capacity and will accept fat e-bikes. It connects to your 2-inch hitch, and while it does require tools to attach it, they are included with your purchase. The rack also has a tilt lever that lets you tilt the whole rack out of the way and allows you quick and easy access to your trunk, which is a handy feature.
There aren’t that many racks that will hold four bikes, so if you’re an e-bike-loving family, your options are somewhat limited. Thankfully, the KAC K4 is a good-quality option, and its low price means that it is the best bike rack for electric bikes for the money. It has some good features and is relatively easy to attach, but it doesn’t have quite the same weight capacity as some other racks.
3. Saris Door County Hitch Rack with Electric Lift – Premium Choice
|Weight Capacity:||2 x 60 pounds|
|Dimensions:||15 x 15 x 15 inches|
E-bikes have a lot of benefits and uses, but one thing they are not is lightweight and easy to lift. The Saris Door County Hitch Rack with Electric Lift aims to help overcome this problem, especially when it comes to lifting the bike onto and off the bike rack.
The rack platform is an electric lift style so it can be raised and lowered and prevents you from having to try and carry the weight of the bike. It holds two electric bikes, and, because it is powered by your vehicle, it connects to the 7-pin adapter of your car and has brake lights to provide extra visibility to vehicles behind. The lift is locked and unlocked using a key, ensuring security and preventing easy theft of the bikes.
The rack will only hold bikes up to 60 pounds and with tires of up to 3 inches, and although the rack does fold away to provide access to the rear of the vehicle, it doesn’t fold up like some others. The addition of electrics also makes it a very expensive bike rack.
4. Kuat Racks NV 2.0 Bike Rack
|Weight Capacity:||2 x 60 pounds|
|Dimensions:||36 x 23 x 8.5 inches|
The Kuat Racks NV 2.0 Bike Rack is designed for two fat tire e-bikes and is also compatible with road e-bikes. If you do want to load two fat e-bikes, though, you will need to get an additional strap to help ensure that both bikes stay in place securely.
The rack includes integrated locks, which means you don’t need to carry anything extra, but the locking mechanism can be a bit fiddly and takes some getting used to. The rack will take fat tires but its capacity of 60 pounds means that it won’t work with some of the beefier electric bikes on the market, unfortunately. Installation is simple, though, thanks to the no-tool hitch cam system which is easy to use and quick to install.
5. RockyMounts BackStage Bicycle Rack
|Weight Capacity:||2 x 60 pounds|
|Dimensions:||46 x 22 x 8 inches|
The RockyMounts Backstage Bicycle Rack is noteworthy for the amount of access it provides to the rear of the vehicle. Once you’ve got two potentially cumbersome bikes hitched on the back, it can prove difficult to get to the tailgate or the trunk.
The RockyMounts BackStage can be tilted 30 degrees away, which allows quick and easy access to a rear hatch or the whole thing can be swung 180 degrees away from the car so that you can get unrestricted access to your vehicle’s tail. It connects to the 2-inch hitch, so isn’t compatible with RVs but claims to use a 3-axis, anti-wobble system that keeps the bikes secure while you’re driving and means you can concentrate on driving rather than worrying whether your bike is still on the back. However, it will only take bikes weighing up to 60 pounds each, and it won’t take bikes with fenders. It also benefits from the use of an additional strap to really make sure the bikes are secure while driving.
6. Hollywood Racks Destination Bike Rack
|Weight Capacity:||2 x 70 pounds|
|Dimensions:||52.5 x 18.5 x 11.5 inches|
The Hollywood Rack Destination Bike Rack is designed to carry two electric bikes, weighing up to 70 pounds each. The rack accepts bikes with wheels up to 4.5 inches thick, so not quite as wide as the 5-inch wheel racks but still good enough for most fat tire e-bikes. And the extra 10-pound weight capacity means that it will accept a lot more modern e-bikes. It has an expandable aluminum ramp, which is lightweight and makes it easier to load and unload the bikes.
To accommodate bikes with unusual dimensions, the Hollywood Racks Destination Bike Rack also has an adjustable frame and seat post clamps, so you aren’t restricted to bikes with certain measurements. The rack is sturdy and strong, although quite expensive for a two-bike rack, and the rack tilts away from the vehicle to provide easy access to the rear.
7. Thule T2 Pro XTR
|Weight Capacity:||60 pounds|
|Dimensions:||54 x 43 x 15 inches|
The Thule T2 Pro XTR can hold two e-bikes and because it will accept wheels up to 5 inches thick, that includes fat tire e-bikes. However, the weight capacity per bike is on the low side at 60 pounds, which means owners of larger bikes and heftier models may have to look elsewhere. The rack can be tricky to hitch, although moving it around is made easier with the integrated wheels, but once it is in place and being used, the bikes can be tilted away from the vehicle to allow access to the rear. When not in use, the rack can be folded up against the vehicle.
The Thule is expensive and, for the price, it would benefit from expandable ramps for easier loading and unloading, but it is a good quality rack overall.
8. Thule EasyFold XT 2 Hitch Bike Rack
|Weight Capacity:||65 pounds|
|Dimensions:||48.4 x 25 x 26.75 inches|
The Thule EasyFold XT 2 Hitch Bike Rack is another electric bike rack from Thule, this time capable of holding bikes that weigh up to 65 pounds each. It also comes with a folding ramp that should make loading and unloading bikes onto the rack easier. It is quite an expensive rack, but it does tilt completely away from the vehicle to allow convenient access to the trunk. It is also compatible with 2-inch receivers, which most racks are, and 1.25-inch receivers, which is not a standard feature on all racks.
As well as being quite expensive, if you have fat tire e-bikes, you will need to buy an additional strap kit. And the same goes for owners of bikes with longer wheelbases. If you have road e-bikes and especially a 1.25-inch hitch, it is a good choice of robust bike rack.
9. Saris Superclamp EX Bike Hitch Car Rack
|Weight Capacity:||2 x 60 and 2 x 35 pounds|
|Dimensions:||50 x 15.75 x 24 inches|
The Saris Superclamp EX Bike Hitch Car Rack is capable of holding up to four bikes, although it won’t necessarily hold four electric bikes. While the two internal racks have a weight capacity of 60 pounds each, the external racks only have 35-pound limits—that’s handy for a family that has two adult bikes and two kids’ bikes, but not for four full-sized e-bikes.
It will also take bikes with up to a 50-inch wheelbase and, even when fully loaded, it tilts away from the vehicle to allow access to the trunk. And it will fold up when in use. It is compatible with 20-inch hitches, but the extra bike capacity does mean additional cost and extra weight, with the extra weight making it a little tricky to attach.
10. Yakima HoldUp EVO Tray-Style Bike Rack
|Weight Capacity:||2 x 50 pounds|
|Dimensions:||38.75 x 21.37 x 15.12 inches|
The Yakima HoldUp EVO Tray-Style Bike Rack is a tray-style rack with a 20-inch hitch connection that is capable of holding two bikes. It only has a 50-pound bike weight capacity, but it does accept tires up to 4.8 inches wide and bikes with a wheelbase of up to 48 inches wide, both of which are reasonable.
The Yakima is pricier than some of the other models on this list, and they accept heavier bikes, but if you have lighter but longer bikes, this is a good alternative. Bikes attach without the frame touching and there is a pedal that makes it easier to tilt the rack out of the way when you want access to the trunk.
E-bikes represent a fairly serious financial investment, costing from $1,000 for some of the more affordable models to $10,000 or more for high-end models. As well as having a heavier price tag than mountain bikes and road bikes, they also have a heavier form.
Some of the more basic e-bikes can easily weigh 50 pounds, while those with more features and at the lower end of the price scale can weigh as much as 70 pounds. When you also consider the fact that e-bikes have thicker wheels and a different frame design from other bikes, you are going to need a specialist e-bike rack.
Below are some of the features that you need to consider when shopping for your rack.
The bike capacity is the number of bikes that the rack will carry. The vast majority of racks will hold two bikes. Some will hold four. It is also possible to buy add-ons for certain two-bike racks that allow you to add an extra two, although you need to ensure that the add-on is strong enough to properly secure the weight.
Bike Weight Capacity
When it comes to weight, you do need to ensure that the rack can safely and securely hold the weight of your bikes. Cheaper e-bikes can weigh 60–70 pounds or more. Some of the more expensive models can weigh less, but it is rare to find electric bikes that weigh much under 50 pounds.
Sixty pounds seems to be the most common weight capacity per bike, but there is a range between 50–70 pounds. Some of the four-bike racks designed predominantly for family use offer a higher weight capacity for two bikes and lesser capacity for the other two, so always check properly before buying.
Electric bike racks tend to have locking features. These secure the bike in place, rather than simply leaving the bike to hang on a hook. It means that no matter what bumps you hit or what speed you travel, the bikes should remain securely on the back of your vehicle. If a rack doesn’t come with adequate locking facilities, consider using your own locks and ties to keep the bikes in place.
Electric bikes can weigh a lot and after a hard day biking, you have to consider whether you will have the energy to lift the bike up and onto the rack, especially if there’s just one of you. Some racks include ramps that enable you to wheel the bike up and into position and back off the ramp again. These may be detachable ramps, or they may extend out of the rack body, but they need to be stable and strong, and they shouldn’t be a hazard when stowed away and not in use.
Tilt and Swing
Once you have a bike rack in place, typically on the back of a vehicle, it can make access to the trunk or the rear of your vehicle difficult. To provide access, racks will usually either tilt or swing out of the way. If you have a hatch and an opening door at the rear, you can also get a rack that offers both tilt and swing features, which can also be beneficial if you are going to use the rack on two or more vehicles with different trunk mechanisms.
As well as bike weight, racks have a maximum tire size that they can contain. If you have a standard or road e-bike, this shouldn’t be a problem, but if you have a fat tire e-bike, which is
typically used for riding off-road and over more challenging terrains, you may need a rack that will accept bikes with 5-inch tires. Check the width of your tires and ensure that any rack you are considering will accept that width.
There is a very limited number of electric racks available. Not only do these connect to the hitch of your car but they connect to the electrics too. Once connected, the rack can be raised and lowered making it really easy to mount and unmount the bike. They may also have taillights and turn signals because these can be obscured by the bikes and racks. Electric racks cost more, and this might be an unnecessary cost if you can push a bike up a manual ramp.
Electric bikes are expensive and heavy, although they are also convenient and fun to ride. If you want to transport an electric bike, you will likely need a rack for the back of your vehicle. Trunk and rooftop racks do not usually have the required weight capacity to be able to take this type of bike, which leaves hitch-mounted racks as your best option.
While compiling reviews of the best bike racks for electric bikes, above, we found the Hollywood Racks Sport Rider to be surprisingly inexpensive considering its quality and the fact that it has an 80-pound capacity per bike: the highest capacity on our list. If you’re looking to spend less, the KAC K4 comes in either a 2-bike or 4-bike variant although it does have a more restricted 60-pound bike capacity.
Featured Image Credit: Virrage Images, Shutterstock