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How to Carry 3 Bikes on a 2013 Mazda 3 Sport Hatchback

Question:

Greetings, Im looking for a rack for my 2013 Mazda 3 Sport hatchback, with a 1-1/4inch hitch mount carrier. Preferably aluminum, tilting, for 3 bikes, preferably with lock mechanisms. Thanks!

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Expert Reply:

There is 1 bike rack that meets all of your needs, the Thule Helium Aero Aluminum 3 Bike Rack, # TH9043PRO. The Thule brand is well respected in the biking community and this rack is made right here in the USA. I have attached a demonstration video of this bike racks for you to check out.

I noticed you are planning on using the bike rack on a 2013 Mazda 3 Sport Hatchback. All of the trailer hitches available for your vehicle are Class I rated, which means you will be limited to carrying a maximum of 2 bikes on a hitch mounted bike rack. The problem that arises when carrying 3 or more bikes on a Class I hitch is that the weight of the additional bike is placed further away from the trailer hitch receiver which creates additional stress and torque on the trailer hitch receiver. This additional torque can bend and even brake the trailer hitch and could possibly damage your vehicle, hitch, bike rack and bikes. It is similar to using a pipe extension on a wrench to break a rusty bolt. The additional leverage, or torque, is the issue, not just the overall additional weight.

You can still use any of these three bike racks to carry two bikes, but for your third bike I recommend adding a roof rack like Rola Sport Series Roof Rack, # 59833, for vehicles with fixed roof rack mounting points, or the Inno roof rack which consists of # INB127, # INSUT and # INK866, for vehicles without the fixed mounting points. Once you have the roof rack installed, you can use a roof mounted bike rack like the Inno Fork Lock III Bike Rack, # INA391. This route will require more of an investment, but it is the safest way to carry 3 bikes with your vehicle.

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John H

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