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4- and 5-Bike Hitch Rack Options for Chevrolet Suburban

Question:

I have a Chevy Suburban and need to transport 4 or 5 full suspension bikes. What is my best option? I like the Yakima and Thule racks but cant seem to find one my smaller bike fits through the arm.

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Expert Reply:

Four or five full-suspension bikes will have a substantial total weight so a hitch-mounted bike carrier is really your only option. There are no trunk/hatch-mount bike carriers in a 5-bike capacity.

The hitch on your Suburban could be either a 2-inch or a 2-1/2-inch size. There are no bike racks made for 2-1/2-inch hitches but it is easy to use a 2-inch rack even in a 2-1/2-inch hitch simply by installing a reducer sleeve such as # 58102. This slips into the larger hitch and drops its internal dimension to 2-inches to allow use of a 2-inch hitch bike carrier like the Thule T2 Classic 4-bike platform rack # TH9044-TH9046 you referenced. For a 5-bike carrier you will be limited to the handing rack style, such as those shown on the linked page. If you can live with 4-bike capacity then you have many more options.

The frame design of the bikes does affect their fit on the rack. Smaller bikes, bikes without a horizontal top frame tube and bikes with fenders will be easier to fit on some types of rack than on others. I suggest reading the linked article on racks that will help guide you to the best options for your specific bikes.

If all the bikes have a frame design that allows mounting in the narrow cradles of a carrier like the Swagman XP 5 # S64970 then this option would be highly cost-effective. This rack tilts away from the vehicle for easier access to your rear cargo area and it includes locks for the bike.

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