There are many different types of bike racks on the market, and each has its own set of pros and cons. In this article, we will explore five of the most popular types of bike racks.

Hitch-Mount Bike Racks

If you have a hitch on the back of your vehicle, you may use this type bike rack. They are available in two primary styles: suspended and platform, with numerous variants in between.

Suspended Hitch Mounted Bike Racks

With a suspended type bike rack, the bicycles are supported by the frame. Compared to traditional platform-style bike carriers, they are both lighter and less costly. Additional straps are often required to keep the bikes from swinging. Certain bikes, such as female’s bikes, may need an adaptor bar.

Platform Hitch Mounted Bike Racks

The bikes are supported from the bottom up by platform type bike racks. It may cost more, but these racks are more stable and can accommodate a wide range of bikes. They’re also more convenient to remove than suspended bike racks.


  • Installing is a breeze.
  • Loading and unloading is simple.
  • In certain cases, the trunk/hatch may be accessed.
  • There are several designs to choose from.
  • High load capacity is compatible with a broad range of automobiles.
  • Highly recommended for regular usage.


  • A hitch is required.
  • Can be quite costly.
  • It’s possible that less expensive versions may obstruct the trunk or hatch.
  • Depending on the kind of bike, additional tie-downs may be required.

Is a Hitch-Mount Bike Rack Right for You?

If you plan to use your bike rack often, go for a hitch-mount model. It’s ideal for cars already equipped with a hitch, as well as those needing a lot of room for bikes. Stabilisation and good accessibility to the rear luggage door on some bike rack versions make them ideal for lengthy road journeys.

Trunk-Mount Bike Racks

Another popular option is the trunk-mount bike rack. As the name suggests, this type of rack attaches to the trunk or rear door of your vehicle. Compared to hitch racks and roof racks, they’re much cheaper but also have some disadvantages


  • Easy to take on and off
  • An excellent choice if you only occasionally need a bike rack


  • The weight of the rack and bikes is supported by the vehicle’s body
  • Can damage the paintwork if not fitted correctly
  • Increased fuel consumption due to wind resistance
  • There is a chance that the rack or bikes may come loose and fall off

Is a Trunk-Mount Bike Rack Right for You?

A trunk-mount bike rack could be the right choice for you if you only need to transport your bikes occasionally. They’re less expensive than hitch and roof racks, but take a bit more time to install

Roof-Mount Bike Racks

A roof-mounted bike rack secures your bicycle to the horizontal bars of your vehicle. Fork-mounted, wheel-mounted, and frame-mounted are the most common types.

Fork Mount Bike Racks

Fork-mounted racks need the removal of the bike’s front wheel. In order to keep the bike in place, the fork is employed. As a result, it is easy to hoist onto the roof and has a better clearance over the automobile.

Wheel Mount Bike Racks

Racks that attach to the wheel of the bike are known as “wheel-mount racks.” In order to install it, you won’t have to take off the front wheel. It won’t be necessary to connect it to the frame either.

Fram Mount Bike Racks

It is possible to secure a bike using an arm attached to the bike’s frame using frame-mount racks (such as this one). Bikes with fragile frames should not be stored in this manner, which works for the majority of bikes.


  • Will not impede access to the trunk or the hatch
  • Suitable with a wide range of bicycles
  • In a variety of styles
  • A solid foundation that is safe and secure
  • When not in use, the rack may be left in place


  • Lifting bicycles to and from the roof is required
  • Increases the vehicle’s clearance
  • Reduced aerodynamic performance

Is a Roof-Mount Bike Rack Right for You?

The roof-mount bike rack is a good option if you have an SUV, crossover, or van without a hitch. They are more affordable than hitch and trunk racks. But, they’re not as secure, so they may not be the best choice if you plan on going on long road trips orcarrying more than two bikes

Spare Tire Bike Racks

A spare tire rack is a great option if you have a jeep, van, or SUV with a rear-mounted spare tire. The bike is secured at the axle and frame, and the weight of the bike and rack is supported by the spare tire.

Because spare tires come in a variety of shapes and sizes, you must ensure that the bike rack you choose is suitable with your vehicle by carefully checking the product information and fit instructions for the particular bike rack you choose.Advantages


  • The rack is supported by the spare tire, not the vehicle body
  • Can be used with a wide variety of bikes


  • The capacity is rather limited.
  • Strapping bicycles down is essential.
  • For certain cars, finding a roof rack that fits might be a challenge.

Is a Spare Tire Bike Rack Right for You?

A spare tire bike rack is a good option if you have an SUV, crossover, or van with a rear-mounted spare tire. As a bonus, you can still use the bike rack without the hitch if you don’t have one or require the hitch for towing. It’s good for off-roading since it gives a lot of stability.

Truck Bed Bike Racks

Truck bed bike racks are designed to be used in the back of a pickup truck. Depending on your scenario, you may choose from a variety of options. Even if you have a truck with a lot of storage capacity, you may want to consider a bike rack that can be attached to the guardrails to carry several bikes.

For those that want to use the entire bed for storage, headache racks with bike carriers are available. These racks extend over the cab and provide attachment points for bikes without impeding access to the truck bed.


  • Your bikes are out of the way and not taking up space in the truck bed
  • Bikes are less likely to be damaged when properlysecured in a rack
  • Many racks allow for the carrying of multiple bikes


  • Access to the truck bed may be impeded
  • Bikes may be more difficult to load and unload

Is a Truck Bed Bike Rack Right for You?

A truck bed bike rack is a great way to transport your bikes if you have a pickup truck. There are several different types of truck bed racks, and the one you choose will depend on how many bikes you want to transport and what type of bikes you have.

Final Thoughts

There are a variety of ways to transport your bikes, and the best option for you will depend on your vehicle and how many bikes you need to transport. If you have an SUV, crossover, or van, a hitch- or roof-mount rack is probably your best bet. If you have a truck, a bed-mounted rack is probably your best option. And if you have a spare tire, a spare tire rack is a great option. No matter what type of vehicle you have, there’s a bike rack that’s perfect for you.

Happy biking!