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Yakima Hitch Adapters Review - 2021 Subaru Outback Wagon

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Review of the Yakima Hitch Adapters on a 2021 Subaru Outback Wagon


Hi everyone, it's Evangeline here at etrailer. And today, we'll be taking a look at the Yakima EXO swing-away system with the GearWarrior cargo carrier, the DoubleUp bike rack, the TopShelf, the SwingBase, as well as the SnowBank ski and snowboard carrier. Later in this video, we'll take a look at all of those pieces right here on our 2021 Subaru Outback. The Yakima EXO system is a very unique system because you can mix and match your different accessories very quickly and very easily. Like right now, I have a bike rack on top and a cargo basket on bottom. I could switch it around real quick, put a ski and snowboard on top.

And the way that this works is that this allows you to carry different types of items on your Subaru Outback, and that's what we're gonna focus on. We're gonna focus on how the EXO system itself works with this vehicle so that you can see if it's a right fit for you, your adventures, and your Subaru Outback. The first thing we'll take a look at is the swing-away feature. And before we do that, I'd like to say that we have the CURT aftermarket hitch here, which is pretty close to the inside of our vehicle, which means you don't have much space here. So a quick measurement is the distance from our bumper to the handle is three inches.

And from that to the SwingBase, it's gonna be seven inches. So it's gonna be a tight fit, still doable, but something to keep in mind as you rotate this knob. Once you have that loose, you're then gonna pull this other knob and then push out on the SwingBase. So you have this lever here. Push out with that lever until it catches right there in the corner.

To fully utilize that swing-away system, we need to open up our hatch. As you can see, there's plenty of clearance now between our door and our bike and our system. So we can grab our items, whether it's our large coolers, our chairs, we can even set that all up here behind our vehicle since we have so much space. Now, with it swung out like this, there's some things to think about. One is if you have this fully loaded, you may wanna use the jack that's included with your TopShelf to give it some support if you have it out for an extended period of time.

Another is if you have the bike rack, look at how convenient it is to now get your bikes. So I have the DoubleUp bike rack, which has a weight capacity of 40 pounds per bike. You can carry bikes of different shapes and sizes. If you really wanna know the different features and specs, check out the DoubleUp bike rack full review, which I did, which goes into all of that. But here, with the way it's turned around, you can access or hold your bike on this side while your friend gets their bike on the other. But what if someone has cargo down here that they need to get to, but the bike rack is in a way, what do they then do Well, you can swing this TopShelf around. So there's gonna be two key components here. One is gonna be the clip or the lock included with your TopShelf, take that out. The other is gonna be this knob here. So you're gonna rotate that knob in order to loosen it, and then you can now swing this around a full 180 degrees. And now we have it where it's clear. So with it swung out like this, let's take a look at some clearances we have. So I have 25-inch wheels, and it looks like it comes close to our vehicle. So we have a clearance of about three inches from the end of our tire to right where our light is, which is actually plenty of clearance since you're gonna go up this way. So perfectly fine for your larger bikes. With it swung out like this, this is right in line with your tail light and this doesn't take up too much room to the side. So here, we have access to our GearWarrior. This is also really cool if you have the GearLocker, the enclosed cargo carrier, 'cause then you can open up the lid, you can grab it right off of the SwingBase, things like that. And when you're done with that, you can swing this all the way around, just turn it and then secure it once it's swung. So while we're in this position, I'm just gonna real quick take off the bike. We have a strap in the back. You press this lever to release that strap, and then you go over to the front, hold onto the bike as you do so. Notice how tall this is Definitely something worth considering if you have your heavier bikes. As you press this, lift up, push out, and now you are ready to go on a bike ride. Here's another look at how far it sits out beside our vehicle. It sits right in line with our vehicle, very convenient 'cause then we have the clearance to the side. Now I'm gonna lift up on this knob so that we can push it in, and then I'm gonna continue pushing it in with our support. Since everything is heavy, you wanna make sure you're supporting it properly as you bring it up and latch it in. Let's go over real quick over weight capacities. So this is a very heavy system. Check out our product page for those numbers, especially with different combinations. When you have this fully loaded up, you wanna make sure you're not overburdening your hitch capacity on your vehicle. But with this right here, we have the GearWarrior and the DoubleUp. And what we're gonna do is we're gonna switch this out real quick to show off how quick and easy that works. First is that we have these lock cores on our speed knobs, and I definitely recommend picking up a bunch of extra lock cores so everything is keyed alike. Once that's unlocked, you can then press those tabs and start rotating those speed knobs. You're gonna wanna rotate them all the way until they tighten it up again, then you're gonna grab your accessory and then switch it out. Here, I have our SnowBank ski and snowboard carriers. They are gonna fit right into those tracks, then they're gonna tighten down with those knobs we loosened earlier. Once those are tightened down, you then press these tabs, and that's how you know everything is nice and secure. Now let's load it up with a snowboard. So this snowboard fits right into our SnowBank ski and snowboard carrier. We have that double jaw, which helps out with those larger bindings. This secures it. You can switch those out with lock cores. Another thing that's really easy to see with this on is how high this sits up on our vehicle. The TopShelf sits right below the emblem for your Subaru Outback. And with the SnowBank, you can see how even our rear window is still completely visible. Speaking of measurements, let's take a quick look at the length this adds to our system. So measuring from the bumper to the furthest point, which is actually our cargo carrier, it sits at 32 inches. The SwingBase itself will sit at around 30 inches. And then for ground clearance, that's gonna be from the bottom of the SwingBase, so this will not change no matter what accessory you have, 16 inches. So that's helpful when you go up those steep inclines, like those driveways and hills. And then that length added will be helpful too when you have to back into really tight spots or even back into your garage. So my personal thoughts about the Yakima EXO system right here on our Subaru Outback is first off, the Outback is probably one of the most popular vehicles for people that like to go out on adventures. The EXO system is designed to make that happen. You can mix and match those different accessories. So whether during a season when you need to go snowboarding and skiing, and then you wanna go back, but this time, take your bike with you, you switch it out and still use the same system. Definitely check out our different combinations though 'cause some of them pair really well with each other for those adventures. Hopefully though, this video helped you out with figuring what's the right fit for your vehicle and what is it like living with the Yakima EXO system. And that was a look at the Yakima EXO system on our 2021 Subaru Outback. What we saw today was the SwingBase, the TopShelf, the GearWarrior, the SnowBank ski and snowboard carrier, the DoubleUp two-bike platform rack right here on our vehicle here at etrailer.com..


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