Thule Car Rack Selector


Unsure of how you should carry bikes on your car? We can help you make the right choice for your needs.

Your first step should be to decide how many bikes you want to carry and what vehicle you will carry them on.

Next we will describe the different locations that you can mount bikes – read each section to determine which mount best suits your needs.


Roof mount carriers have many advantages. They offer the most options and can usually carry several bikes (up to 4 or more in most cases). They can be mounted on almost any vehicle but are most often used on cars and lower vehicles. These systems will mount either directly to your vehicle roof or to your factory rack and provide the foundation for a modular rack system. Beyond bike options, roof systems can allow you to carry other items, such as luggage boxes, skis, canoes, kayaks, lumber, ladders, etc. While providing the most flexibility and options, roof systems will cost more, can take more time to mount, and you’ll need to remember to watch your clearance when entering garages and drive throughs.

Main Advantages: Modular options, Flexibility, Security
Main Disadvantages: Higher cost, SUV roofs are usually too high to reach comfortably



Trunk mount carriers offer easy bike access and can usually carry up to 3 bikes. These carriers will mount with straps to your vehicle hatch and/or trunk. Because of their size and the fact that they are designed only for bikes, trunk racks are lower in cost and can move easily between different vehicles. If you want to carry more than 3 bikes then you'll need to consider a roof rack or receiver hitch rack.

Main Advantages: Lower price, Portability
Main Disadvantages: Not as stable/secure, Can restrict trunk access 



Hitch mount carriers mount to a receiver hitch or step bumper system on your vehicle. These are typically used on pick-up trucks and SUV's, but can be installed on most any vehicle. If you already have a hitch, or plan to have a hitch installed on your vehicle you can mount a Thule bike carrier, add a ski adapter, or use a hitch cargo box. Hitch carriers offer easy access, locking security, and easy installation and removal. Systems are available for up to five bikes and allow easy access to your hatch or rear vehicle compartment. Systems are limited to the receiver capacity.

Main Advantages: Access, Security, Stability
Main Disadvantages: Possible additional cost of receiver hitch and installation 



Truck bed mount carriers adapt to the pickup truck bed and can be mounted on a truck rack system or pickup bike mount. These system utilize bed space and offer options for items beyond bikes – The Thule Bedrider system carries two to four bikes.

Main Advantages: Access
Main Disadvantage: Consumes bed space

Car Rack Installation Service Pricing: