Bike Rack Recommendations for 2010 Honda Element

Question:

I have a 2010 Honda Element and would like to get a bike rack attachment for the rear. Any recommendations?

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Expert Reply:

To mount a bike rack on the rear of your Element, there are two alternatives, a hitch mounted option or a trunk mounted option.

The hitch mounted option would require that a hitch like the Draw-Tite Class III receiver, part # 75659 be installed. The hitch would then serve as the attachment point for the bike rack, and could also be used with a cargo carrier or to tow a small trailer in the future, if the need should arise. Although going this route would be initially more expensive due to the cost of the hitch, the primary advantages of going with a hitch mounted rack are the fact that the rack will not be in direct physical contact with the painted finish of the vehicle, as it would with a hatch mounted solution. The rack will install and remove very easily, and you will not be limited to carrying three bikes, as you would be with a hatch mounted rack.

If you foresee no future need to tow a trailer or use a cargo carrier, a trunk or hatch mounted rack might make more sense for you, if your Element does NOT have a spoiler at the top of the hatch. I have linked you to the various trunk mounted racks that are compatible with your Element.

Of the many choices, I would recommend the Thule Raceway. The Raceway attaches to the vehicle using 4 ratcheting cables that allow the rack to be installed or removed in seconds, rather than the 6 adjustable straps and hooks used by other racks. Two of the ratcheting cables are lockable, which secure the rack to the vehicle, and the rack features an integrated cable lock to further deter theft. The Raceway is available in a 2 bike model as part # TH9001PRO or a 3-bike version, part # TH9002PRO. Because portions of the trunk mounted rack are in direct contact with the painted finish of the vehicle, you will want to make sure the rack and the surface of the vehicle that the rack will sit on is perfectly clean and free of grit.

If you prefer a hitch mounted rack, Swagman offers their Trailhead model, which is a lower priced rack that still includes features like an anti-rattle hitch pin and anti-sway cradles that keep the bikes from swaying back and forth during transport. The 2-bike model is part # S63360 , 3-bike model is # S63365 and 4-bike model is # S63380.

I have linked you to the products I mentioned, as well as to some FAQ articles and product demonstration videos you might find helpful.

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Michael L

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