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Trailer Hitch Classes Review

Custom Fit Trailer Hitch

trailer hitch

Trailer hitches are given a class rating based on their maximum weight capacity and receiver opening size. The classes range from class I, which has the lowest capacity, to class V, which has the highest capacity. If you're looking for a hitch, the following information about hitch classes can help you select the right one for your vehicle and intended use.


To view a video about hitch classes, click here.





Class I Trailer Hitch Receivers

2,000 lbs GTW
200 lbs TW
Class I hitch
Typical loads Bicycle mounted on hitch-mounted rack Kayaks on trailer Scooter on trailer
Typical tow vehicles Toyota Prius Honda Fit Smartcar

  • Typical tow vehicles: compact to midsize cars
  • Typical loads: bikes, cargo carriers, snowboards, skis, kayaks, canoes, mobility scooters, and small trailers
  • Maximum gross trailer weight: 2,000 lbs
  • Maximum tongue weight: 200 lbs
  • Receiver opening: 1-1/4" x 1-1/4"
  • Accepts accessories like bike racks, cargo carriers, and drawbars that are made only for class I hitches
    • Class II accessories will not work with class I hitches

To find a custom-fit hitch for your vehicle, click here.





Class II Trailer Hitch Receivers

3,500 lbs GTW
350 lbs TW
Class II hitch
Typical loads Bicycle mounted on hitch-mounted rack Thule class II and III cargo carrier Kayaks on trailer Scooter on trailer Popup camper Small boat trailer Small camper
Typical tow vehicles Midsize Chevrolet automobile fordescape midsizecar nissansuv

  • Typical tow vehicles: midsize cars, full size cars, and small SUVs
  • Typical loads: bikes, cargo carriers, snowboards, skis, kayaks, canoes, mobility scooters, small popup campers, small boats, and small trailers
  • Maximum gross trailer weight: 3,500 lbs
  • Maximum tongue weight: 350 lbs
  • Receiver opening: 1-1/4" x 1-1/4"
  • Accepts accessories like bike racks, cargo carriers, and drawbars that are made for class I and class II hitches

To find a custom-fit hitch for your vehicle, click here.





Class III Trailer Hitch Receivers

6,000 lbs GTW
650 lbs TW
Class III hitch
Typical loads Large class III hitch-mounted cargo carrier Small camper Boat on 2-axle trailer Flatbed utility trailer Motorcycles on hitch-mounted motorcycle carrier Lawnmower on hitch-mounted rack
Typical tow vehicles Midsize car Ford 4x4 pickup truck Jeep Cherokee Toyota SUV H3 Hummer

  • Typical tow vehicles: trucks, full sized cars, and large SUVs
  • Typical loads: mid size campers, utility trailers, lawn maintenance equipment, bikes, cargo carriers, bikes, snowboards, skis, kayaks, canoes, motorcycles, and snowmobiles
  • Maximum gross trailer weight: 6,000 lbs
  • Maximum tongue weight: 650 lbs
  • Receiver opening: 2" x 2"
  • Accepts accessories like bike racks, cargo carriers, and ball mounts that are made for a class III receiver
    • An adapter allows you to mount hitch accessories made for a 1-1/4" receiver

Note: Most manufacturers call any hitch with a 2" x 2" opening a class III hitch. It is not uncommon to see a 2" hitch that is rated at 3,500 lbs GTW called a class III hitch.


To find a custom-fit hitch for your vehicle, click here.





Class IV Trailer Hitch Receivers

12,000 lbs GTW
1,000 lbs TW
Class IV hitch
Typical loads Large camper Large toy hauler
Typical tow vehicles Chevy Suburban Ford 3/4 ton pickup truck

  • Typical tow vehicles: Heavy duty trucks and SUVS
  • Typical loads: large campers, large boats, and toy haulers
  • Maximum gross trailer weight: 12,000 lbs
  • Maximum tongue weight: 1,000 lbs
  • Receiver opening: 2" x 2"
  • Accepts accessories like bike racks, cargo carriers, and ball mounts that are made for a class III or class IV receiver
    • An adapter allows you to mount hitch accessories made for a 1-1/4" receiver

To find a custom-fit hitch for your vehicle, click here.





Class V Trailer Hitch Receivers

18,000 lbs GTW
1,800 lbs TW
Class V hitch
Typical loads Large toy hauler
Typical tow vehicles Dump truck Commercial dumptruck Dodge dually pickup truck

  • Typical tow vehicles: heavy duty and commercial trucks
  • Typical loads: large toy trailers, equipment haulers, multi-car trailers
  • Maximum gross trailer weight: 18,000 lbs
  • Maximum tongue weight: 1,800 lbs
  • Receiver opening: 2-1/2" x 2-1/2"
    • A reducer sleeve allows you to mount hitch accessories made for a class III and class IV receivers

To find a custom-fit hitch for your vehicle, click here.





















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