Searching for a reliable bike rack? Look no further than our Thule EasyFold XT 2 review.
Want to transport your bikes with ease? Our Thule EasyFold XT 2 review covers all the features of this top-rated bike rack, including its durable construction and user-friendly design.Looking for a bike rack that can accommodate your heavy e-bike? Look no further than the Thule EasyFold XT 2. This versatile bike rack can carry up to 65 lbs per bike and even comes with a ramp feature for easy loading.
We recently tested the Thule EasyFold XT 2 and were impressed with its features. The rack is easy to attach to your car’s tow bar and can be set up for use in no time. Its versatile locking arms ensure that your bike stays secure without damaging any parts like fenders. Plus, the rack can be fully folded and stowed away in the center, making it easy to transport when not in use.
Overall, we highly recommend the Thule EasyFold XT 2 for anyone looking for a durable and reliable bike rack. Whether you’re using a traditional bike or an electric bike, this rack can handle the job with ease. Check out our full Thule EasyFold XT 2 review for more information.
Thule EasyFold XT 2 Review: Pros & Cons
What we like
What we don't like
Our Analysis and Test Results
There’s no doubt that the number of people who ride electric bikes is rising quickly. With the EasyFold XT 2, Thule tries to solve the problem of how to move these heavy e-bikes. With a ramp that folds up and a high weight limit, users can roll their bikes onto the platform instead of lifting them. This rack also folds up in an interesting way, and when it’s not in use or being stored, it makes a nice little package. Unfortunately, many other parts of this rack felt bulky and awkward, and the way the bike was attached didn’t give us a lot of trust. It’s a good choice for people who have trouble loading their heavy e-bikes, but we think there are better and cheaper options for everyone else.
Thule EasyFold XT 2 Review: Performance Comparison
1. Ease of Everyday Use
The EasyFold XT 2 presents a mixed assessment regarding its usability. Certain components, such as the ramp and tilt mechanism, exhibit a high degree of user-friendliness, whereas other functionalities may present a greater level of complexity. Although the attachment system facilitates the loading and unloading of heavy bikes, it may require some acclimation, and the level of security it provides may not meet our expectations.
The process of detaching and attaching the Easy Fold XT 2 onto the vehicle is comparatively simpler than that of most hitch-mount racks. The weight of 45 lbs, compact folded size, and inclusion of integrated wheels facilitate convenient transportation of the equipment from its storage area to the vehicle. The hitch-pin is designed to be tool-free, thereby simplifying the process of securing the hitch to the receiver compared to other methods.
To commence, unfold the rack on the vehicle in such a way that the platform is level. To load your bicycles onto the rack, begin with the inside tray and lift them up effortlessly, provided that they are lightweight. The bike rack is equipped with two clamp arms, one of shorter length designed to secure the inside bike frame, while the other, longer arm is intended to hold the outside bike in place.
The clamps are designed to be adjustable and can be rotated or repositioned to accommodate various frame designs. Loosen the knob to open the rubberized jaws of the frame clamp, align it with the frame, and then securely fasten it. A mechanism is present that produces a clicking sound to indicate the attainment of the appropriate tension. This feature is advantageous as it prevents the possibility of damaging the bike frame due to excessive squeezing.
The fixed wheel straps are utilized to encircle the rim and secure it in place by means of a ratcheting mechanism, with the objective of applying tension at a 45-degree angle towards the center of the rack. Please proceed to load the second bicycle onto the outer tray and follow the same steps as before to secure it, utilizing the longer clamp arm. Frequently, it may be necessary to make adjustments and manipulate the outer clamp arm in order to accommodate the frame of the adjacent bicycle.
If your bicycles possess considerable weight, it may be advisable to make use of the ramp functionality. The ramp is stowed underneath the primary platform and can be retrieved by activating the tilt lever located in the center of the rack. Subsequently, the platform can be tilted outward and away from the automobile. The ramp is designed to be stored in a compact, folded state and must be unfolded prior to utilization. The ramp features a small tab on one end that is designed to fit securely into the horizontal notch located at the end of the rack.
After positioning the tray, proceed to roll the bicycle onto it and secure the bicycles as instructed earlier. Upon completion of utilizing the ramp, it is necessary to proceed with folding it back up and tilting the rack with the bikes attached outward, in order to facilitate its return to the designated storage location.
The complexity of this process surpasses that of other platform racks, and the utilization of the ramp system introduces additional steps and time to the procedure. Notwithstanding, the ramp could prove to be essential for individuals who may otherwise encounter difficulty in loading their weighty e-bikes.
We have some concerns regarding the security of the frame clamps. Considering the open mouth and incomplete wrapping around the frame, there is a possibility of inadvertent release of the bike frame during transit on uneven terrains or if the attachment is not done diligently or at an appropriate location. Several user reviews have indicated instances where bicycles were damaged due to the release of frame clamps during transit.
Furthermore, it is not possible to secure a bicycle on this rack without establishing contact with the frame, which may result in harm to high-end carbon frames or paint finishes, unless the Thule Carbon Frame Protector is acquired for $19.95. An additional aspect to take into account is the need to reposition the clamp arms to accommodate various frame designs when loading different bikes frequently, thereby increasing the time required for the task.
From a positive perspective, the tilt mechanism operates smoothly and offers a satisfactory range of motion to facilitate access to the trunk. Engage the tilt mechanism using your foot and gradually lower the rack downwards and aside. Managing two e-bikes on the rack can be challenging as it involves handling a substantial amount of weight while lowering the rack. The locking mechanism is user-friendly and efficient.
Review of the Thule EasyFold XT 2 bike rack. The Easyfold XT 2 boasts a lightweight and compact folded size, making it an ideal choice for users seeking convenience and portability.
2. Ease of Removal and Storage
The EasyFold XT 2 is a compact and foldable platform hitch rack, which facilitates easy removal and storage, making it one of the most convenient options available. In addition to its compact dimensions of 31 x 12 x 26 inches, this product has a weight of only 45 lbs. The presence of handles situated at the top of the rack facilitates ease of lifting, while the inclusion of two small wheels located at the bottom of the rack enables effortless transportation to and from your designated storage area. Regrettably, one of the wheels located at the base of our rack became inoperable shortly after purchase, thereby rendering the aforementioned feature non-functional.
The tool-free hitch pin enables swift and effortless installation and removal of the rack from the receiver. To disengage the rack, please unlock the primary fastening knob and proceed to loosen it by rotating it in a counterclockwise direction. Please remove the easy-pin hook from the receiver and proceed to detach the rack. The hitch pin lock has been seamlessly integrated into the knob of the hitch pin, facilitating a swift and effortless process of securing the rack to your vehicle.
The EasyFold XT 2 exhibits a satisfactory level of versatility as a bike rack. This rack is designed to accommodate heavy e-bikes with a weight limit of 65 lbs per bike. It also features a ramp for easy loading, making it an ideal choice for individuals who may struggle with loading bikes onto more conventional racks. The condensed design of this rack in its folded state renders it a feasible alternative for individuals facing storage constraints. This feature renders it an attractive alternative for individuals residing in apartments or those who frequently attach and detach their rack.
Additionally, it is compatible with hitch receivers of both 1.25 inches and 2 inches in size. The product is equipped with a pre-installed adapter designed for compatibility with 2-inch hitch receivers. By utilizing an allen wrench to detach the adaptor sleeve, the product can be effectively utilized with 1.25-inch hitches.
It is noteworthy that we were unable to locate precise information regarding the suggested maximum or minimum wheelbase dimensions on the Thule website or within the user manual. Based on our expertise, the product is compatible with a wide range of bicycles, including those designed for children and adults. However, it may not be suitable for certain contemporary mountain bikes with particularly elongated wheelbases.
The tire trays’ width is suitable for accommodating a variety of tire sizes, including road bike tires with narrow profiles and mountain bike treads that are approximately 3 inches wide. Thule offers a XXL Strap Kit that is designed to accommodate bicycles with extended wheelbases and wider tires up to 4.7 inches. Although these straps are compatible with larger tires, they are not suitable for the narrower wheel tray.
Additionally, the ramp may not be wide enough to provide optimal functionality for tires of that size. Furthermore, it should be noted that the frame clamps are designed to ensure proper frame contact with the bicycles. Therefore, individuals with high-end carbon frames may need to consider alternative options or acquire the Carbon Frame Protector adapters.
4. Ease of Assembly
Minimal assembly is required for this rack. As a result of its compact design when folded, the rack is shipped in a fully assembled state. Please ascertain whether your vehicle has a 1.25-inch or 2-inch receiver. In the event that you possess a 1.25-inch receiver, it will be necessary to employ an allen wrench to extract the adapter from the rack. Attach the rack onto the receiver, fasten the easy-pin hitch hook, and securely tighten the knob. The process couldn’t be simpler.
The EasyFold XT 2 is equipped with Thule’s One Key System, which includes locks on the knobs of the attach pin and the frame clamps. This system enables the user to secure the rack to the automobile and each bike individually, utilizing a single key for all locks. Although we acknowledge the value of security features such as these, it is worth noting that the locking mechanisms may not be highly resilient and may only function as a deterrent for a thief who seizes an opportunity. We recommend incorporating a heavy-duty the aftermarket cable secure to enhance the security measures while utilizing this rack.
Although no serious breakdowns or significant damage occurred during testing, we have some concerns regarding the durability of the moving components and the extensive use of plastic in the building of the Easy Fold XT 2 rack. The majority of our rack remains operational and exhibits minimal indications of untimely deterioration. However, one of the minor transport wheels located at the base of our rack experienced a prompt malfunction. It is possible that this component incurred damage during the shipping process, however, it was not detected until it ultimately failed. While not a crucial component of the rack’s design for our intended use, it is nonetheless concerning.
The design of EasyFold XT 2 incorporates a significant amount of plastic material. The hinges located on the ramp, the structure’s clamps, and the raising wheel straps all appear to be vulnerable to damage if handled without due care. Although our testing did not result in any damage, we believe that these components have the potential to fail and therefore deserve to be highlighted.
The EasyFold XT bike rack has been subjected to our testing, and we have found it to be one of the pricier options available. While it does possess certain user-friendly attributes, we have determined that it falls short in terms of value when compared to other products in its category. This rack possesses functional attributes, is lightweight, storable, and features a ramp that facilitates the loading of heavy e-bikes. However, it may present some challenges in terms of functionality, as the attachment system for the bike appears to lack sufficient security.
Additionally, the abundance of mobile components and plastic incorporated into the design may not provide the desired level of durability. We believe that this rack would provide optimal value for individuals who use racks infrequently and face challenges by loading heavy e-bikes on conventional racks. Additionally, it would be suitable for those seeking a hitch-mount rack that occupies minimal storage space.
Thule EasyFold XT 2 Review: Final Thoughts
The Thule EasyFold XT is a hitch rack that accommodates e-bikes and may be a suitable alternative for cyclists who encounter challenges when loading their bicycles onto conventional tray-style hitch racks. The loading ramp and compact folded size of the rack are user-friendly features that may prove advantageous to certain users.
Although the rack is operational, its intricate design renders it somewhat unwieldy to operate, and the bicycle attachment mechanism does not provide the most reliable sense of security. Furthermore, there are concerns regarding the durability of the product, and the elevated price point further diminishes its appeal.