Thule Sweden bought the T2 design when they acquired Sportwerks. When this buy out was completed, Thule owned the patents to the best rack design on the market. With a couple of Thule “tweaks”, the rack became what it is today. The main design stayed the same, but the addition of adjustable rails, locking arms and replaceable straps gave the rack the Thule quality with the trusted Sportwerks design. MSRP is 369.00 See the pictures below for visual representation of the explanations that follow.
HOW IT WORKS
The T2 rack is a hitch mounted rack that is available in 2″ and 1-1/4″ receiver versions, but the 1-1/4″ receiver model is not approved for the 2 bike add on. The basic lever actuated four bar design folds the rack vertically for out of the way storage and pivots downward for tailgate access. A bolt threads into the main tube via the hitch pin location to secure the rack to the hitch. You can purchase an optional Snug-Tite lock to lock the rack to your hitch.
Up and Out of the Way
One of the best things about this rack is it’s ability to fold up and out of the way easily. This rack never leaves my truck. Pull back on the lever and fold the rack up effortlessly until it snaps into place. That is really all it takes. To bring the rack down, pull back on the lever and push down until it snaps into place. It really is as easy as it sounds.
Accessing the Tailgate While the Bike is Racked
Under the rack tube, there is a single silver pull pin. Pull this pin out, pull the lever and let the rack down easily. In this position, you are able to access your suv’s storage without un-racking the bike. This feature is incredibly useful and lifting the rack back into it’s normal position is a breeze.
Racking the Bikes
This is where the T2 really shines. Set the bike in the trays, pull the arm up and over the front tire, ratchet down the arm onto the front tire and then secure the rear strap. You now have your bike racked without harming the frame, and it is as secure as frame mount designs. This rack also accommodates any frame regardless of the frame tubes because it is a tire mount design. The rails are adjustable to customize the rack for your needs. If you loosen the four bolts that secure the rail brackets, you can slide them left or right to keep the bikes from hitting each other during transportation.
Locking the Bikes
This is the one area that Thule has not perfected. The Snug Tite lock does a great job of securing the rack to the hitch, but the locking arms are very easy to get around. Do not use these locks as your only theft preventative. To lock the bikes to the rack, I use the New York Fahgettaboudit Chain and Lock from Kryptonite. With it’s 11mm six-sided, chain links made of triple heated boron manganese steel, this chain is the leader in security. The price is a little on the steep side, but it will save you from having your bike stolen. Even the look of this chain will keep the casual thief away from your bike. The chain and lock combo also comes with a $3,500 warranty.
This is the rack that others are judged by. Sportwerks started the design and Thule just added further improvements. Yakima’s HoldUp 2 and Raxter’s 2 Bike Rack try to achieve the same simplicity and performance, but they fall short. If you want a no nonsense rack that works every time without fail, buy the Thule from T2 and never look back. If you are not able to use a hitch mount rack, check out the rest of the Thule line for the same quality and design. This is the best bike rack on the market.