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Comparing Saris, Thule and Swagman Platform Style Hitch Bike Racks for 2011 Honda Element

Question:

Difficult in deciding which product - any insight? 1 Saris Freedom 2 Bike Platform Rack Code: SA4412B 2 Thule Doubletrack Platform-Style 2 Bike: Code: TH9054 3 Swagman XTC-2 2-Bike Platform Rack: Code: S64670 I Just installed your Hidden Hitch Trailer Hitch Receiver - Class III - 2 - what a great product on my 2011 Honda Element 2.4 DOHC 5Dr 4WD EX. Concerns: Construction, stability, quality. Thanks

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Expert Reply:

The three platform-style hitch bike racks you referenced, the Saris Freedom 2 # SA4412B, the Thule Doubletrack Pro XT # TH92BJ and the Swagman XTC-2 # S64670, differ in a few key features and the nature of your particular bikes may help you determine which is the best match for you.

First, let's talk weight. The Saris Freedom 2 weighs 22-1/2-lbs, the Thule Doubletrack Pro about 32-lbs and the Swagman XTC-2 about 28-lbs. If you intend to install and remove the rack often this may be a consideration.

In terms of fit at the back of your Element, the Freedom offers slightly more clearance than the other racks with 12-inches of space between the hitch pin hole and the nearest wheel tray. The Freedom also wins in terms of ground clearance, thanks to the 8-inches of rise in the shank. If you have a bike with a long wheel base - over 50-inches - then you'll want the XTC-2 which offers the most: a full 66-inches at maximum. Maximum tire widths vary too: The XTC-2 works with tires up to 2-1/2-inches wide while the others can handle tires up to 3-inches in width. All three racks share a 35-lbs-per-bike weight capacity.

All three carry a limited lifetime warranty; the Saris and Thule racks are USA-made.

If the details above do not give you enough information to choose you can click on the video links to see further illustration of these racks' features.

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