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Recommended Thule 3 Bike Rack Compatible With Class 1 Hitch On 2008 Honda Accord


I have a Curt hitch attached to the tow hook as well as the left and right sides of my 2008 Honda Accord sedan. I want to buy a hitch rack that will allow for 3 bikes. I see your recommendation to only use 2 bikes on a Class I, but the shop that installed the hitch maintains that it can handle the extra torque of the 3rd bike because the hitch is attached to the tow ring, and that ring can be used to pull the car out of a ditch. Can I safely use the Thule Apex or Vertex to carry a 3rd bike on my car highway driving and gravel roads? Thanks


Expert Reply:

The Thule Helium Aero Pro 3-Bike Rack - 1-1/4" and 2" Hitches - Tilting - Aluminum # TH9043PRO is the only Thule 3 bike carrier that is rated as compatible with Class I trailer hitch receivers, however the manufacturer will limit the rack to two bikes on a Class I trailer hitch. This is a really nice bike rack with the built in anti-rattle as well as the one-key system to secure the rack to your receiver and the cable lock to secure your bike to the rack itself.

I recommend using the Swagman Deluxe Bike Frame Adapter Bar for Women's, Children's, and Alternative Frame Bikes # 64005 for greater ground clearance and level traveling.

We don't have any hitches that attach to the tow hooks as well as the frame, so I can't confirm that it is a stronger application. You will want to make sure the hitch is rated for the additional tongue weight of the bikes and the carrier.

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Follow up Questions

I have the Mazda CX5 installed hitch- #000-8e-r06. I need a bike rack for 3 bikes (2 are beach cruisers). I am concerned, as we have a class 1 hitch, and some of the specifications only allow for 2 bikes
Etrailer Expert
Reply from Chris R.

It's true that Class I hitches can only safely handle up to 2 bikes. The added leverage of a 3rd bike further back from the hitch just creates too much stress. Your best option will be to go with a 2-bike rack like the excellent Kuat Transfer # TS02B for the cruisers and mount your third bike up on the roof using a roof rack and carrier. If you can tell me what model year your CX5 is I will be happy to make a specific recommendation.

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