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Best Bike Rack For Acura MDX

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Though it’s not an off-roader, the Acura MDX makes a great weekend adventure car, especially if you carry a bike or two with you.

In this article, we’ll help you find the best bike rack for Acura MDX crossover SUVs. We’ll review 7 leading products for you to consider. Topping the list is the Thule T2 Pro XT Hitch Bike Rack for its exceptional versatility and confidence-inspiring build quality.

We’ll also tell you what to look for in your search for the ideal Acura MDX bike rack.

Top Picks:

Top 7 Best Acura MDX Bike Racks

Finding the right bike rack for any vehicle isn’t always easy. Below are 7 specially chosen products that work on the Acura MDX.

1. Thule T2 Pro XT Hitch Bike Rack (best hitch mount)

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  • Type of rack: Hitch (2”)
  • Number of bikes: 2
  • Weight Capacity: 60 lbs per bike

A strong bike rack that accommodates most bikes is the Thule T2 Pro XT Hitch Bike Rack. Because it’s a platform-style rack, the XT can carry e-bikes and fat bikes, unlike many rival products.

A useful design feature of this rack is the frame-free ratcheting arms that secure bikes by their tires. Security is another forte of the Thule T2 Pro XT.

What We Like

  • Versatile – accepts most bikes.
  • Strong – high construction quality.
  • Clearance – generous amount of space between bikes.

What We Don’t Like

  • Cable lock – cable locks are easy to cut.

2. Yakima FullBack Premium Trunk Bike Strap Rack (best trunk mount)

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  • Type of rack: Trunk
  • Number of bikes: 2
  • Weight Capacity: 30 lbs per bike

The rugged Yakima FullBack Premium Trunk Bike Strap Rack includes plenty of padding to protect your vehicle’s paintwork and uses cushioned “ZipStrips” to secure your bikes to the rack.

Unlike many trunk racks, this Yakima rack offers a level of security with its SKS (same key system) locking capability.

What We Like

  • Rugged – reassuring build quality.
  • Lockable – SKS locking system secures both the rack and bikes.
  • Padding – thick padding to protect your vehicle’s finish.

What We Don’t Like

  • Bike types – you may need top tube or crossbar substitutes to load some bikes.

3. Yakima FrontLoader Upright Bike Carrier (best roof mount)

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  • Type of rack: Roof
  • Number of bikes: 1
  • Weight Capacity: 40 lbs per bike

A roof-mounted bike rack that carries most kinds of bikes is the Yakima FrontLoader Upright Bike Carrier. This sturdy bike rack requires crossbars to be installed between 16” and 48” apart.

The Yakima FrontLoader holds your bike using a ZipStrip at the rear wheel and a wheel-on mount at the front. An SKS security system locks everything together.

What We Like

  • Versatile – carries most bike types (not fat bikes).
  • Security – rack and bike are both lockable.
  • Non-frame – safe for use on carbon-framed bikes.

What We Don’t Like

  • Extras – needs roof rails and crossbars.

4. Swagman XC2 Hitch Mount Bike Rack (best budget)

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  • Type of rack: Hitch
  • Number of bikes: 2
  • Weight Capacity: 35 lbs per bike

The Swagman XC2 Hitch Mount Bike Rack is one of the more affordable bike racks you’ll find for an Acura MDX. It’s easy to assemble and has an upright ratchet arm that holds bike frames up to 59 cm.

When unloaded, the wheel trays on this rack fold upward to save space. The trays can accommodate wheels up to 2.5” wide. You can buy fat bike trays separately.

What We Like

  • Affordable – budget-friendly option for the Acura MDX.
  • Versatile – holds many types of bikes with its ratchet arm.
  • Foldable – wheel trays fold upward when not in use.

What We Don’t Like

  • Fat-free – you’ll need separately available wide wheel trays for fat bikes.

5. Kuat NV Base 2.0 2-Bike Hitch Rack

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  • Type of rack: Hitch
  • Number of bikes: 2
  • Weight Capacity: 60 lbs per bike

An impressively rugged bike rack is the Kuat NV Base 2.0 2-Bike Hitch Rack. Its tough steel construction is finished with a ballistic powder coating to protect it against knocks, abrasion, and corrosion.

The platform design of this bike carrier makes it suitable for heavier bikes like e-bikes and fat bikes. Note, however, you need a separately available Phat Bike Kit to carry fat bikes (max 4.8” tire width).

What We Like

  • Durability – extremely well made and durably finished.
  • Capacity – generous weight capacity will accommodate most bikes.
  • Security – includes an integrated cable lock and a hitch lock.

What We Don’t Like

  • Tire width – maximum 3” tire width doesn’t allow for fat bikes.

6. Saris Bones EX Trunk Bike Carrier

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  • Type of rack: Trunk
  • Number of bikes: 2
  • Weight Capacity: 35 lbs per bike

Sturdily constructed with injection-molded arms and legs, the Saris Bones EX Trunk Bike Carrier is a durable and stable bike rack. Its arched design provides some separation for bikes on different levels.

This USA-made bike carrier includes efficient ratchet straps to secure bikes to the rack. Integrated strap management prevents straps from flailing around during transit.

What We Like

  • Durable – sturdy construction with injection-molded arms and legs.
  • Space – arched design creates space between bikes.
  • Secure – ratchet straps tie the bike down securely.

What We Don’t Like

  • Lockless – no lock for either the rack or your bike(s).

7. Hollywood Racks Destination 2-Bike Platform Hitch Rack

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  • Type of rack: Hitch
  • Number of bikes: 2
  • Weight Capacity: 35 lbs per bike

To secure your bike(s) to the Hollywood Racks Destination 2-Bike Platform Hitch Rack, you tie down the wheels with ratchet straps and attach the frame to the center post with sliding and rotating cradles.

This rack suits bikes with a wheel base up to 48” and a maximum 3” tire width. For security, it has a locking threaded hitch pin.

What We Like

  • Simple – easy to install and use.
  • Versatile – carries most types of bikes.
  • Secure – you can lock the rack to the car.

What We Don’t Like

  • No Fat – doesn’t accept fat bikes.

Rack Types That Can Be Used With An Acura MDX

The Acura MDX has been in production since 2001. As you’d expect, not all bike racks fit all models of this car. There have been four generations of the MDX:

  • First generation (YD1) – 2001 to 2006
  • Second generation (YD2) – 2007 to 2013
  • Third generation (YD3) – 2014 to 2020
  • Fourth generation (YD4) – 2021 onward

One way these generations might affect installation of a bike rack lies in the compatibility of aftermarket hitch receivers with different years of vehicle.

You need a hitch receiver before you can install a hitch rack. This can be installed by you if you’re handy with cars, or you can have a mechanic do it for you at a higher cost.

OEM hitches or third-party ones can be readily bought. You’ll need a Class 3 hitch with a 2” receiver for compatibility with most hitch-mounted bike racks.

Video: Installing An Acura MDX OEM Hitch

Vehicles With Spoilers

If your Acura MDX has a spoiler, as some do, you’ll have difficulty fitting a trunk-mounted bike rack.

One of the few products that overcomes the above problem is the Hollywood Racks Over-The-Top Bike Rack. This is designed to reach over the top of a spoiler and latch on to roof-rack rails.

Below is an overview of the three main types of bike rack you’ll find for the Acura MDX.

Hitch Rack

Hitch racks have some key benefits over other types of bike racks. To get one downside out of the way: they tend to be the most expensive type, even if you have a hitch receiver ready and waiting.

On the flipside, hitch-mounted bike racks offer some significant benefits:

  • Security – many hitch bike racks are lockable, both at the hitch receiver and where the rack holds the bike. In other words, you can lock the rack to the car and the bike to the rack.
  • Versatile – platform styles of hitch rack (where the bike sits on wheel trays) are highly versatile. Some hanging styles of hitch rack where bikes are suspended are better suited to bikes with high top tubes.
  • Strong – sturdier models of hitch rack can carry heavier bikes than trunk-mounted racks, which gives them greater potential to carry e-bikes or fat bikes (the latter isn’t always possible because of tire width).

As long as the hitch rack is lockable at the hitch, you can leave it in situ when not in use. Many hitch-mounted racks can be folded flat when they’re not loaded.

Roof Racks

Roof racks are especially useful if you want to retain access to the tailgate or hatch of your Acura MDX. Some hitch racks also allow this and let you pivot or swing the bikes out of the way, but you’re likely to pay a premium for this feature.

To install bikes on a roof, you need to have crossbars installed (bars that span the width of the car). These will typically fix to roof rails, though there are various crossbars available that don’t need rails.

Some roof-mounted bike racks hold the bike with the front wheel removed (i.e., by the fork). Others leave both wheels in place.

Trunk Rack

Trunk racks sit on the trunk or back of your vehicle and are attached by straps to the hatch, trunk or bumper. These tend to be more affordable than other racks, though the better ones still need some investment.

One of the main obstacles to using a trunk rack is, aptly enough, a spoiler.

A vital feature of trunk racks is always the amount of padding used to protect the finish of your car or to prevent denting. Cinches, straps and cradles should be cushioned to preserve the bike’s finish.

FAQs

Here are some commonly asked questions regarding bike racks:

Are Bike Racks Safe?

They’re safe as long as you make sure everything is cinched down tightly and securely. Stop and check the load after a short distance.

Does Fitting a Bike Rack Affect my Insurance?

You should inform your insurer of any intention to install a bike rack and carry bikes on your car. Not doing so could leave you fully liable in an accident.

Which Bike Rack Will Suit My Vehicle?

A hitch rack is probably the best all-around choice for an Acura MDX, though a carefully chosen trunk rack also works well. Roof racks can be impractical on a tall SUV.

Conclusion

To revisit our reviews, the Thule T2 Pro XT Hitch Bike Rack took top spot for its strength and versatility. This rack carries almost any bike without needing accessories.

Next on our list is the Yakima FullBack Premium Trunk Bike Strap Rack, which suits various models of Acura MDX. This sturdy rack is ready to use out of the box.

Placed third is the Yakima FrontLoader Upright Bike Carrier. This lockable rack lets you keep tailgate or hatch access clear.

We hope the info in this article helps you find the best bike rack for your Acura MDX!

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Glenn H
Glenn H
When I’m not contributing articles to Bike Push, I can often be found cycling on the rural roads around me. If I can help you benefit from bicycling in some small way, I’ll consider it a win.

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