Having a minivan is great if you want to travel with friends. It’s not as useful if you want to transport bikes. At least, not until you invest in the best bike rack for minivan.
The Kuat Racks NV 2.0 Bike Rack will let you drive your minivan as is and enjoy the interior space. But, it comes with the added benefit of letting you carry a bike or two with you wherever you go. However, if don’t mind the added fuel consumption and effort of having to mount a bike up top, the YAKIMA FrontLoader is a good choice as well.
The latter, especially, is perfect if you want a secure and stable hold for a variety of bike types. Unfortunately. it comes at a premium cost. You’ll also need multiple racks if you want to mount more than one bike.
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With that said, we do recommend that you scroll down below if you want to find out more about the best minivan bicycle racks on the market today.
Hitch Mount Bike Rack
Best Hitch Mount Bike Rack
Rattling and wobbling are two of the biggest issues when using hitch mount bike racks. However, because of its expanding-wedge design, the Kuat Racks NV 2.0 Bike Rack solves that issue. The said design choice secures the rack to your vehicle’s receiver hitch. In addition to that, you can lock the rack in place using the thru-belt for added theft protection.
The NV 2.0 also comes with a stout pivot. This lets you flip the rack up just as easily when it’s not in use as you would lay it flat when you need to mount bikes. You can even drop it to a 45-degree angle. This won’t be as useful for minivans, but it’s a nice feature to have if you use other vehicles like trucks as well.
Other notable added features include a repair stand, integrated cable locks, and adjustable cradles.
This bike rack is all but perfect except for one small issue: the ratcheting system is prone to grime and dirt build-up. You’ll want to spend your time cleaning it after every use. Otherwise, it might lock up and make it difficult to remove your bikes.
- 60-pound individual bike capacity
- Extensive wheelbase and tire width support
- No-tool installation design
If you’d like to keep your bikes and your wallet safe, the Swagman XC2 Hitch Mount Bike Rack is a great choice.
It’s one of the most highly-recommended bike racks out there, and there’s a good reason for that. In terms of compatibility, it can fit just about anything. This includes fat bikes, so long as you use additional trays. The best part is that it’s easy to load and unload, as well as install and remove.
It is this ease of use and adjustability that makes this hitch mount bike rack stand out. All you have to do is to slide the horizontal carrier bars out. Also, once you want to mount the bike, you simply have to place the tires into the trays. After that, just lower the central arm down to the frame and that’s it.
Unfortunately, the low price means that there were some compromises made when it comes to construction quality.
Rust, in particular, is a common issue reported by a lot of users. You’ll need to keep this rack well-maintained. Otherwise, it’ll rust away or the arms might seize up all of a sudden. Both are not something you’ll want to happen to you.
- Ease of use
- Questionable build quality
- Prone to noise
Price is the main reason why the Allen Sports 4-Bike Hitch Racks is so popular among cycling enthusiasts.
At its price point, you’d be lucky to find a bike hitch rack that can mount or two bikes properly. What sets it apart is that it has enough space to accommodate as many as 4 adult bikes. Although it’s a tight squeeze and you’ll need to use additional bungee cords, the fact remains that it supports that many bikes per trip.
This platform carrier is also simple to use. It’s easy to lift bikes over the support platform and the built-in cradles make mounting a straightforward process. It also comes with a tension bolt out of the package. If installed, this helps minimize any rattling and vibrations when you’re out on the road with the bikes mounted onto the rack.
So long as you’re not going to mount multiple large bikes with large wheels, this hitch rack should be a good choice for mounting an entire garage’s worth of bikes.
- Simple and straightforward
- Supports 4 bikes
- Low asking price
- Tight space
- No extra padding
Trunk mount bike rack
Best Trunk Mount Bike Rack
When it comes to vehicle compatibility, it’s hard to beat the Saris Bones Car Bike Rack.
Because of the padded frame, the bike rack can fit on just about any vehicle. This includes minivans. That’s not all. As a result of its clever use of tension straps and frame supports, it provides a stable foundation to carry anywhere between two to four bikes comfortably. It even has 12-inch support arms that support mounting clips for added stability.
Perhaps the best part here is that the rack is easy to install. You’ll just have to follow the instructions and make sure that you placed the straps properly.
Speaking of installation, be prepared to find a couple of vehicle scratches at first.
Because the strap ends are exposed metal, there’s little in the way to protect your vehicle’s paint. But, you can remedy this by adding something to cover the metal. Also, while you’re at it, you might want to cobble up bungee cords to help tighten the fit and security of the bike once it’s mounted.
- Detailed instructions
- Proper spacing in between mounted bikes
- Support for 2-4 bikes
- Prone to scratching vehicle surface
- Mounting security could be better
Best for 2-3 Bike
The Tyger Auto TG-RK1B204B comes in three different models, but all three are designed to fit on all types of vehicles. Also, the difference in cost is not that big between the one-, two-, and three-bike configuration. The main difference between the three is that the one-bike model comes preassembled out of the box.
Moving on, all three models use safety straps with a padded lower frame that helps protect your vehicle’s paint. At the same time, the mounted bike’s frame is protected by the soft cradles. Meanwhile, the ratchet buckles help secure your bike’s mount.
For all-weather protection, the metal is coated with rust-resistance and you can fold the arms up for easy storage. It doesn’t need constant adjustment once mounted on your vehicle. The rack also does an excellent job of keeping bikes stable once mounted. This includes the heavier ones that are usually problematic for other types of bike racks.
The biggest issue with this bike rack is that it’s not a good fit for vehicles with rear spoilers.
Since that’s not a problem with minivans, the rack is a near-perfect product whose main drawback now is the confusing instruction manual.
- Competitive pricing
- Rust-resistant coating
- Limited lifetime warranty
- The instruction manual is hard to follow
Allen Sports does it again with another popular bike rack. This time, it’s a trunk-mounting rack.
Thanks mostly to its low asking price and combination of useful features, a lot of people recommend this trunk-mounted bike rack.
Among its most useful features is its padded lower frame for proper vehicle paint protection. Also, it comes with an individual tie-down for a more secure hold of each bike mounted. At the same time, the rack has side straps. This helps improve lateral stability and makes the rack easier to install.
As a bonus, the rack ships fully assembled. This means that the installation process is even easier. You can be well on your way to bringing your back wherever you want in just an hour or two after receiving the package.
- Low asking price
- Easy installation
- Solid construction quality
- Extra-large padding
- Challenging to use for shorter people
Roof Mount Bike Rack
Best Roof Mount Bike Rack
Unlike other roof-mounting bikes, the Yakima FrontLoader stands out thanks to its two-piece contraption at the front. The said thingamajig expands and wraps itself around the bike’s front wheels to clamp it into place. The rear wheel is then clamped down using a combination of a ratchet strap and a removable tray.
This creates a very secure and tight hold wherein your bike won’t wobble about, regardless of road conditions. You can even lock the rack itself to the roof bars if you want to keep them even more secure.
Because the rack ships pre-assembled, sliding it into your roof bars is a piece of cake. You won’t even need to read the instructions.
The rack is also adjustable and accommodates bikes with wheel sizes anywhere between 20 inches and 29 inches. However, the tire width is limited to 2.5 inches. This means that fat bike tires are not supported.
If it’s any consolation, the rack does make it easy to mount bikes onto it since the front and rear hoops are easy to locate so you can focus on just tightening the grip once you’ve got the bike mounted.
- Easy to mount for a roof-mounted bike rack
- Minimal chances of frame damage
- No anti-theft locking mechanism
Best Fork Mount Bike Rack
If you don’t like mounting bikes via their wheels, the YAKIMA still has got you covered. The YAKIMA – HighRoad Wheel-On mount is an excellent alternative to the Frontloader. Instead of mounting and securing bikes by the wheel, it holds them by the fork. The said design allows it to accommodate all sorts of bikes, including even fat bikes.
In addition to this, the HighRoad makes mounting even easier with a sliding tray for the rear wheels.
Speaking of mounting, you won’t need any help mounting your bike on top of your minivan using this rack. The lockable skewer and its integrated adjustment knob are both designed for one-handed operation. It also has a built-in cable lock as an anti-theft measure, although it’s a shame that it doesn’t come with a lock barrel out of the box.
Lastly, the HighRoad can be folded flat. This allows it to remain relatively low profile when you’re not mounting bikes on top of your minivan.
Unfortunately, one common issue with the HighRoad is compatibility. In particular, it’s not compatible with bikes with full-length front mudguards. Although they are a bit rare, it’s a small flaw worth mentioning that can be a deal-breaker for people with such bikes.
- Sleek design and finish
- Low price
- Folds flat
- Not compatible with bikes with full-length front mudguards
Best for Those on a Budget
The Swagman STANDARD Fork Mount Rooftop Bike Carrier is proof that you don’t have to compromise if your budget is tight. It can fit on crossbars up to three inches in width and feels very durable to touch. Not to mention, it doesn’t mount bikes by the wheels. Rather, it mounts bikes by the fork, which allows it to support larger bikes with fat tires.
For added security and stability, you also get to use high-quality wheel straps that you can adjust anytime. The quick-release skewer and tool-free installation then make mounting and removal just as easy as the other.
All in all, the only real issue we see with this bike rack is the lack of a locking mechanism. However, given its price, these aren’t exactly deal-breakers if you’ve no more money to spare.
- 35-pound capacity
- Tool-free installation
- Adjustable, high-quality wheel straps
- Prone to rust
- Instruction manual could be better
Vacuum mount bike rack
The ROCKBROS Suction Cup Roof Bike Rack is the bestbike rack for minivan as far as innovation goes.
Unlike the others on our list, this rack doesn’t mount to the trunk, hitch, or roof. Or, at least, not in the conventional sense. Instead, it uses a clever suction cup system so all you have to do is to stick it to your minivan’s roof. Then, after following the instructions, you’ll be good to go after just a couple of minutes.
You won’t need to worry about security as well. The cups are affixed firmly to your car’s roof. It won’t come off as long as you prepared the roof properly. The bikes are then mounted securely using heavy-duty fork clamps. The rack also has a velcro strap and a rubber sucker that helps protect your bike from scratches.
With options to mount anywhere between 1 to 3 bikes and support for even fat bike tires, the only issue we see with this bike rack is how it’s installed.
In addition to proper preparation, you also have to make sure that don’t install it on the glass. Although you can do that, we don’t recommend it. Unlike your minivan’s flat roof, the other areas of your car can’t withstand the cup’s suction power. This includes glass, where it will stick if installed, but will most likely crack and break over time.
- Easy set-up and removal
- Wide vehicle and bike compatibility
- Might come off at high speeds
Bike Rack for Minivan Buying Guide
Buying the best bike rack for minivan means that you need to learn how to choose one. This includes learning the different types of bike racks, as well as other important factors we’ll discuss below.
Type of bike racks
Hitch mount bike rack
Hitch-mount bike racks hook up to hitch receivers (1.5- and 2-inch) and are very convenient to use. They offer plenty of protection for both the mounted bikes and the mounting vehicle’s paint and body. However, the main problem is that the rack itself is designed to leave the bike exposed at the far back.
You’ll need to adjust your driving style even more than usual to account for the rack and the bikes with this type of bike rack.
Trunk mount bike rack
Trunk-mounted bike racks are the most economical kind of bike rack. You don’t need a hitch nor a crossbar to mount them. Instead, you just use what it comes with. This is usually a combination of hooks, buckles, and straps, that attach it to the back of the vehicle. In this case, we’re talking about a minivan.
Unfortunately, it is also because of this that makes trunk-mounted bike racks the least secure option.
Roof mount bike rack
Roof-mounted bike racks are arguably the most secure option for mounting bikes on your minivan. Although they do require installing a crossbar first on your minivan, the benefits outweigh the cons. This long list of benefits includes optimal stability and security. This is especially true when transporting bikes across large distances.
Vacuum mount bike rack
Vacuum-mounted bike racks are a relatively new invention. They use suction cups to mount to a vehicle, which usually is the roof. You then mount bikes onto them and secure the bikes using straps, buckles, and/or hooks, depending on the particular model.
Unless you need to carry a lot of bikes, try to stick with a bike rack that can fit only two bikes. Not only does this help lower the cost, but it also helps guarantee that your bike rack can support the bikes better.
The weight consideration of a bike rack works in two ways.
First is the actual weight of the bike rack itself. The second is how much weight it can handle.
Usually, these go hand-in-hand. The heavier bike racks can usually handle heavier bikes. However, this isn’t always the case, so make sure that you double-check. This is especially true for roof-mounted bike racks since a heavy roof bike rack will be more felt than a heavy hitch-mounted bike rack.
Installing most bike racks are relatively easy. However, of all three types of bike racks, trunk-mounted bike racks are generally the easiest to install and mount on vehicles. After that, it all boils down to features.
Some bike racks are easy to mount on vehicles but hard to mount bikes to and some work the other way around.
In addition to having straps and buckles to keep your bikes secure, a rack should also be securely mounted onto the vehicle itself.
If a bike rack doesn’t have an integrated locking cable, that’s not exactly a big issue. You can always use aftermarket solutions. This includes bike locks that can help you secure your bike to the rack. You can then use a different but same kind of lock to mount the rack to the vehicle for added security.
Nothing says going on a road trip with your minivan more than carrying your bike with you.
Your bike can and will be a trusty companion during your road trip. It helps keep you fit and healthy. At the same time, you can use it to explore areas that you otherwise wouldn’t go to on foot.
With that said, we recommend investing in the Kuat Racks NV 2.0 Bike Rack.
The said bike rack is indeed expensive and far from cheap, but that’s okay. You do get exactly what you paid for, and then some. You get to enjoy premium hitch-mount bike rack features. This includes a 60-pound individual bike capacity and fully-integrated cable lacks. The rack is also designed to be installed without the help of hand tools.
If money is a bit tight, the Swagman XC2 Hitch Mount Bike Rack is a good alternative if you insist on using a hitch-mounted bike rack. The Saris Bones Car Bike Rackis also an excellent choice if you want a trunk-mounted bike rack.
All in all, we do believe that all of our recommendations deserve to be called the best bike rack for minivan, one way or another.
It’s up to you whether you agree with us or not.
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