Kuat Highline Trunk Mount 2 Bike Rack Review

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Review of the Kuat Highline Trunk Mount 2 Bike Rack

Speaker 1: Today we're going to be taking a look at the Kuat Highline Trunk Mount Two-Bike Rack, part number HIT2B.The Kuat Highline is a premium trunk mount bike rack that's easy to install. We've got the black installed here today, but it's also available in silver with part number HIT2S. Now, you can get both colors in a three-bike version. For the silver, it's part number HIT3S, and for the black, it's part number HIT3B. It's going to allow us to carry a wide variety of bikes regardless of the frame or size. You can see here we've got a mountain bike and a road bike.The Kuat Highline is not only going to work with your sedans, but it's going to work with your SUVs, your minivans, and your crossovers.

Now, because the Kuat Highline makes contact with the bumper, you will not be able to open up your rear hatch. It holds our bikes with three points of contact. We've got two ratchet-style straps for our top tube and one for our seat post tube. The one for our seat post tube is going to be our anti-sway. It's going to help prevent bike-to-bike contact and bike-to-vehicle contact.

The straps themselves are easy to operate. This is a step up compared to other racks that might have a rubberized strap. Instead of having to pull down and stretch out that rubber over the anchor, this one you just simply press on the tab and then we can guide that strap out. Then we can just take our bike off.With the bike removed, you can see our rubberized cradles. This is going to help keep the bike in position and protect it when we're on the road.

Now, they're not as large as some other bike racks' cradles and they're also in a fixed position, so they're not adjustable along the dual arms. Let's go ahead and take the second bike off so we can touch on some bike spacing.Now, a nice feature that I like about this bike rack is that the anti-sway cradle pivots out of the way for loading and unloading. That way we can easily guide our bike on and off the rack. Now, the dual arms are about 8" apart center on center, so this will really come in handy for those bikes that have tighter frames compared to other bike racks that have a wider setup. When the dual arms are not in use, they fold down individually for compact storage.

You'll operate the switch on top, fold it down until they snap in. This is ideal for pulling in your garage or in a tight parking space.Now these have four different positions. We have our first one, which is our stow position. From there, we have three other options depending on how we have it set up for our vehicle. For our current vehicle, our arms are slightly elevated, which is what we want, but as you could see, they can go up two more times. Now this position may look ridiculous, but as I said, if you have it on a different vehicle, this may be correct.Let's talk about it how it attaches itself to your vehicle. It has six straps total, three for each side. Each strap has a rubber-coated hook, that way it won't harm or scratch our finish. It's also labeled, that way we know where to position them. They're all cam buckle straps. They're extremely easy to use. You just pull to tighten them up, and what I really like is that they include keepers. That way, we don't have to worry about tying our straps or cutting them. The upper and lower supports feature a rubber padding. This is a step up compared to other bike racks that just have a foam roll. Those can deteriorate over time; this will hold up. Now that we've gone over the features, I'll go ahead and show you how to get it set up.I've got it in its folded position now. This will be the best way to stow it in your garage. To get it set up for our vehicle, I've got it turned around. This is our upper support. Right here we've got two tabs. Go ahead and use our thumbs to press in on those, and then we can open it up. We'll set our lower support on our bumper. The upper support is going to rest on our trunk. Now we need to be sure that our tab on each side snaps in place once we have it set up, just like that.With it in position, now let's run our straps. Now, it's a good idea to have them all undone and loosened up. That way at the end we can go through, tighten them up, and then bundle everything up at once. We'll start by grabbing our upper hooks first, labeled "upper." We're going to connect that at the top portion of our trunk, and we're not going to tighten them too much just yet. Just put a little bit of tension on that strap; that way it's going to hold it in place.For our side hook, you want to be sure and stay away from your tail lights. In this case, we'll either want to go above or below. If we choose to hook it on a tail light, we may end up tearing it up or cracking it. For our particular vehicle, we'll actually need to slightly open up the trunk and put in our side hook. That goes the same for our bottom hook. Let's go ahead and do that. Slightly open it up, put it in place. While I've got it here, I'll want to tighten it up just a little bit so it stays, and then for the bottom we'll do the same. Now you want to do that for both sides before you close your trunk.With all the hooks connected, let's go ahead and tighten everything up. Now you want to start with the lower straps first. The easiest way to do this is to pull down with the loose end and then lift up with the other end. That way you get the most out of it, and you want to do that for both sides. Once those are tight, you'll then want to do the upper straps, and then finally the sides. Now let's bundle everything up. So we'll keep it fairly small near the buckle. Then we'll use the hook-and-loop keeper to contain it all. We'll repeat the same process for the other five straps.Now, if you'd like, Kuat has included some protective film that we can place underneath our supports for their protection. For demonstration purposes, we will not be using these. With everything tightened down, you could see it's nice and solid. It's not going anywhere. Now we can get ready to load up our bikes, so we'll need to raise up the dual arms. Then we can undo our straps. We'll fold down our first anti-sway cradle and undo it's strap. Now we're ready for our first bike.Now, it's recommended that you load up the heaviest bike first. For us, it's going to be our mountain bike. We'll want to set a position and we'll want to rotate our pedals out of the way, so it doesn't make contact with our vehicle or our bike rack. Now, you want to be sure that it sets against our anti-sway cradle nicely just like this, and we'll run our strap around the seat post tube and then back through pulling it nice and tight. For our other straps, it's just over the top and down through. With both bikes loaded up, we can go ahead and take it out on our test course and see how it performs.Here on our test course, let's first go into our slalom. This is going to show side-to-side action such as going around corners or evasive maneuvering. Then we'll move onto our solid speed bumps. This is going to show an up-and-down action such as pulling in and out of a driveway or out of a parking garage, and then, finally, we'll go over our alternating speed bumps. This is going to show a twisting action such as going over a pothole or uneven pavement.Now, if you're loading up a children's bike or a woman's bike or any other bike that may have an alternative frame style, you may require the use of a bike adapter bar. This is what's going to allow the bike to sit evenly on the dual arms. Kuat makes one. See etrailer.com. The whole truck-mount bike rack is made out of an extruded aluminum, so it's going to be very strong and lightweight at the same time. It has a weight capacity of 35 pounds per bike and features a limited lifetime warranty.Customers on our site compare this to the Yakima HalfBack Trunk Mount Two-Bike Rack, part number Y02636. Where they differ is the HalfBack is only a four-strap mounting system, whereas the Kuat Highline is a six-strap system. This means that the Kuat could make for a more stable transport for your bikes. That's going to complete our look at the Kuat Highline Trunk Mount Two-Bike Rack, part number HIT2B.

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