TRANSPORTING ELECTRIC BIKES
When trying to transport an ebike, weight, shape, and size are some of the most important factors that need to be taken into consideration. And while in the past it may have been difficult to find ways to transport an ebike, manufacturers and bike rack companies today are developing new transportation solutions in response to the rising popularity of electric bikes. Below we outline some of the best, most convenient methods currently available for transporting electric bikes.
There are three main types of car racks: roof racks, rear racks that strap onto the trunk or rear window, and hitch racks. When transporting electric bikes, it’s best to use hitch racks, as these are typically the strongest and therefore the safest way to haul ebikes. Since whichever rack you’ll eventually be using will be carrying a decent amount of weight—especially if you’re hauling multiple ebikes at once—you should probably stick with racks that mount to the car using a 2 inch hitch, which is sturdier than the 1-¼ inch hitch size.
The next thing to think about is weight. Since many car racks are designed to hold and carry conventional bicycles, which are typically much lighter than ebikes, it’s important that you pay attention to the weight capacity of a rack when figuring out which one to use. In general, go with racks that can hold at least 60-pound bikes. Most racks are made to hold more than one bike at a time, so be sure that if you’re getting one of these it’s rated to carry multiple 60-pound bikes.
Today, it’s becoming more common for rack manufacturers to sell racks built specifically for ebikes. But even if a rack isn’t necessarily designed for ebike use, if you get one with the proper hitch size and weight capacity you should be fine. Here are two of the most popular racks currently available, both of which are good options for carrying electric bikes:
1. Hollywood Racks Sport Rider SE2 (the HR1450E model is Hollywood’s ebike specific version of the popular Sport Rider SE2 rack)
2. Küat NV 2.0
Now, there are even good options for those considering an electric trike, which is obviously more difficult to transport. Hollywood now makes an sturdy, e-trike specific car rack (model HRT330) that can carry an electric trike up to 100lbs and another ebike up to 80lbs.
Another possible method for transporting electric bikes is to use a folding ebike. Folding bicycles typically use some sort of hinged joint and quick release fasteners to allow riders to quickly change the bike between rideable size and collapsed transporting size. This type of ebike could be a good option if you know you’ll be using your bike in conjunction with some other form of transportation—a train, boat or RV—or if you have very limited storage space at your home or office.
Folding electric bike design has improved significantly over the last couple of years. Electric folders used to have an awkward frame design, tiny motors and a very limited range. Fortunately, this is no longer the case. Many of today’s folding ebikes feature comfortable ergonomic frames, fully-integrated batteries and even powerful mid-drive motors on par with their full-size siblings. In other words, technology innovation has largely eliminated the necessary tradeoffs between size and capabilities.
Whichever solution best suits your needs and lifestyle, the popularity of electric bikes means now there is a myriad of options when it comes to transporting your electric bike. So go ahead and take your new ebike on that road trip or bring it along in your RV to explore new areas you visit.