Largest Bike Load for a 2017 Ford Fusion Equipped with a Class I Trailer Hitch Reciever

Question:

hi, I bought the hitch for a ford fusion 2017 part number 24897 it installed great and i bought a bike rack needed four bike slots for the kids part # TH934XTR. Im a little worried about the weight for the hitch i put three bikes on it that are 104 pounds together. the fourth bike is 38 lbs can i safely put the fourth bike on for a 5 hour road trip mostly highway?

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Expert Reply:

You are right to be worried about the weight on your hitch. Class 1 hitches like the Draw-Tite Sport Frame Receiver Hitch, part # 24897 are only rated to carry up to 2 bikes at a time, even when a carrier that can accept more than 2 bikes is inserted and the rack has weight capacity available for the additional bikes.

The reason for this is that the positioning of the weight on the back of the bike rack will cause torque to be applied to the hitch. This can lead to failure of the hitch or the rack itself, potentially damaging the vehicle, hitch, rack and bikes.

I strongly recommend swapping the Draw-Tite hitch for the Curt Class II Receiver Hitch, part # C12091. You will need to purchase a stabilizing strap like part # 18050 to keep the warranty valid, but this will provide a more secure load and allow you to safely utilize the Thule Hitching Post Pro, part # TH934XTR to its full capacity.

To note, the Hitching Post has a per-bike capacity of 35lbs. This again is to protect against potential failures of the rack and damage to your bikes and vehicle.

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