Best Bike Racks For Prius – 2021 Top Picks

| Last Updated: June 27, 2021

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The Toyota Prius has incredible fuel efficiency, which is one reason why it is the perfect road trip vehicle; however, its compact size makes it difficult to bring bikes along for the ride.

If you are one of the many Prius owners that would like to use your vehicle to transport bikes, you could benefit from a new bike rack.

To help you find the perfect bike rack for your needs, we will be going through everything you need to know about bike racks for the Toyota Prius. 

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • Lightweight and very good quality
  • Very easy to use and install
  • Features an arc-based design
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  • Has soft rubber cradles
  • Arms can fold down when not in use
  • Suitable for various types of bikes
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  • Best for the Money
  • Can be installed in minutes
  • Features a safety strap for increased stability
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  • Best Prius Bike Rack Hitch
  • Rack can be adjusted when not in use
  • Can be used to carry various bike types
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  • Best Prius Trunk Bike Rack
  • Made from good quality steel
  • Features extra-large car pads
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  • Best Prius Bike Roof Rack
  • Lighter than most bikes racks
  • Uses suction cups for security
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What Makes a Bike Rack Great for a Prius? 

While there are countless bike racks out there, some are better suited for the Prius than others. To find the best bike rack for your vehicle, consider the following factors: 

Compatibility

Bike racks very rarely fit every type of vehicle, which is why it is so important that you choose one that is compatible with a Toyota Prius. You do not want to take any chances with an ill-fitting bike rack, especially given you will have to trust it to carry your expensive bikes at high speeds.

Bike Capacity

The best bike rack for your Prius will be one that carries the right amount of bikes for your needs. While some small bike racks only hold a single bike, others carry a full family’s worth of bikes. Make sure you are choosing one that has the correct capacity limit.

Stability

You will want to choose a bike rack that remains stable and secure, regardless of how far or fast you are traveling. Not only can an unstable bike rack damage your bikes and Prius, but they can also be dangerous. The best Prius bike racks remain stable in all driving conditions.

Review of the Best Bike Racks For Prius 

To help you find the perfect bike rack, we have provided reviews for some of the best Toyota Prius bike racks available today:

Best Overall:
Saris Bones Trunk Bike Rack

Saris Bones EX Trunk Bike Rack Carrier, Mount 2 Bikes, Black

PROS

  • Corrosion-resistant finish
  • Durable cradle arms will not crack or break
  • Fits both sedan and hatchback Prius variations 
  • Unique Dog Leg design makes installation incredibly easy
  • Arched design makes sure bikes are held at different levels, which helps prevent scratching 

CONS

  • No built-in locking mechanism 
  • Does not work well with large mountain bikes

What Recent Buyers Report

Most buyers found that this bike rack remained stable and secure in all driving conditions. They found that the heavy-duty, injection-molded arms gave them confidence that it could hold their bikes without failing. While some struggled to load large mountain bikes, it worked well for road and hybrid bikes.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The main thing we liked about the Saris Bones trunk rack is its unique, arched design. Not only does this design make it compatible with every type of Prius, but it also makes installation a breeze. Ease of installation is one of the most important features in a bike rack, especially for those that plan on installing and removing it regularly. It also looks great and is available in two colors, which helps buyers match it to their particular vehicle.

Bottom Line

Overall, this is an excellent trunk-mounted bike rack that works flawlessly with the Toyota Prius. If you are looking for a well-made bike rack that can carry two bikes at a time, you should seriously consider the Saris Bones trunk bike rack.

Runner-up:
Thule Passage Trunk Mount Carrier

Thule Passage Trunk Mount Carrier

PROS

  • Carrying arms fold down when not in use
  • Patented FitDial makes it easy to install the rack
  • Soft rubber cradles protect bikes frames from scratching
  • Anti-sway cages prevent bikes from scratching each other
  • Cushioned leg pads and vinyl-coated buckles protect the vehicle against scratches

CONS

  • Fairly expensive 
  • Difficult to load bikes with small frames

What Recent Buyers Report

Recent buyers enjoy how easily they can install this bike rack; in fact, most claim they can securely mount the rack in less than five minutes. They also like that you can easily fold the carrying arms down when you are not transporting bikes. Having a rack that only minimally extends beyond the rear of the car helps for parking.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The main reason why this bike rack stood out to us is the efforts Thule put in to make sure it will not scratch or damage the user’s bikes and vehicle. In addition to covering the carrying arms with soft rubber padding, Thule used cushioned pads to make sure contact points will not scratch or dent the vehicle. They even coated the buckles with vinyl, which prevents them from scratching your vehicle.

Bottom Line

This bike rack is a well-made rack that works the Toyota Prius. It protects your bikes and car from scratches. It keeps your bikes secure, and Thule backs the entire rack with a limited lifetime warranty.

Best for the Money:
Tyger Auto TG-RK1B204B Deluxe

Tyger Auto TG-RK1B204B Deluxe Black 1-Bike Trunk Mount Bicycle Carrier Rack. (Compatible with Most Sedans/Hatchbacks/Minivans and SUVs.)

PROS

  • Easy and fast installation
  • Padded lower frame protects the vehicle
  • Coated hooks with rubber protectors prevent scratching
  • Folds for easy storage and features a convenient carrying handle
  • Two soft cradles protect the bike frame from scratches and dents

CONS

  • Need to purchase an adaptor for bikes that do not have a top frame bar
  • Bikes are held close to the vehicle, which can result in the closest pedal scratching the trunk

What Recent Buyers Report

Recent buyers enjoy how quickly they can mount this bike rack on their vehicles. While they found that their bikes were protected secured in all driving conditions, there were some concerns about the closest pedal scratching their vehicles. However, most prevented this issue by placing a sock over the pedal closest to the trunk. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

Aside from the obvious low price, the thing that impressed us the most about this bike rack is the fact that you can purchase it in a one, two, or three bike configuration. There are so few single bike trunk racks out there, so it is really helpful having that option out there for those that just want a low-profile carrier they can use for solo riding situations. 

We also liked how Tyger Auto added anti-scratch coating to each hook and padding at each contact point. Overall, it is a great bike rack for the price.

Bottom Line

If you are looking for a budget-friendly bike rack for your Prius, you should not overlook this convenient and well-made rack from Tyger Auto.

Best Prius Bike Rack Hitch:
Thule T2 Pro XT

Thule T2 Pro XT Platform Hitch Bike Rack

PROS

  • Tilting feature for easier trunk access
  • Folding design for more convenient storage
  • Built-in locking mechanism for extra security 
  • Tool-free installation makes it easy to mount and remove
  • Accommodates a wide variety of bike types and sizes, including bikes with 5-inch fat bike tires or wider

CONS

  • Fairly expensive
  • Does not include a hitch lock

What Recent Buyers Report

Recent buyers were generally impressed with the straightforward and fast installation process. Given that most hitch mounted bike racks are fairly difficult to install, the quick, tool-free attachment and removal were beneficial for those that planned to use the bike rack regularly.

Why it Stands Out to Us

Due to their constant innovation and consistent quality, we have come to have high expectations for Thule products. Unsurprisingly, this convenient, platform bike rack lives up to the brand’s impressive reputation.

We like the AutoAttach knob, which makes installation and removal much faster than a standard hitch-mounted bike rack. The hidden tilt lever is also really helpful for those wanting to use their trunk while carrying bikes.

Bottom Line

If you are in the market for a hitch-mounted bike rack, this compact, well-built platform rack is perfect for your Prius. While it is a more expensive option, you are paying extra for convenience and quality.

Best Prius Trunk Bike Rack:
Allen Sports Premier

Premier Trunk Mounted Bike Rack

PROS

  • Affordable price
  • Available in two and three bike configurations 
  • Tie-down cradles make sure bikes are held securely
  • Patented Sure Strap restraints make sure the bike rack remains stable at all times
  • Extra-large contact point padding distributes weight evenly and prevents vehicle damage 

CONS

  • Blocks the rear license plate
  • Straps need to be re-tightened before each trip

What Recent Buyers Report

In general, recent buyers enjoyed the level of stability they experienced with this bike rack. While many found that the straps needed adjusting between trips, this is a fairly common issue with trunk-mounted bike racks. Overall, they found that as long as the rack was mounted properly, it did not damage their bikes and carried them safely and securely.

Why it Stands Out to Us

We like this bike rack because it offers a secure hold at a low price. The durable, UV resistant rubber cradle straps make sure your bikes are secure and stable at all times.

We appreciate that Allen Sports made efforts to protect vehicles, as well as the bikes. The anti-scratch padding and secure hold were both designed to make sure the user’s vehicle does not get scratched or dented.

Bottom Line

If you are in the market for an affordable bike rack for your Prius, this versatile, trunk-mounted bike rack is an excellent choice. Best of all, it fits most vehicles, so you can easily lend it to others or continue to use it if you purchase another vehicle down the line.

Best Prius Bike Roof Rack:
SeaSucker Talon

SeaSucker Talon Single Bike Rack for Cars - USA Made Racks - SUV, Sedan, Hatchback, RV, BMW, Honda, Tesla, Mazda and Every Other Car – No Hitch Mount, 100% Safe, Zero Damage, Travel-Friendly Carrier

PROS

  • Hand made in the USA
  • Does not require roof rails
  • Extremely fast installation and removal
  • Used by professional cyclists at the Tour de France
  • Made from 316 stainless steel and UV resistant rubber to prevent corrosion and fading 

CONS

  • Fairly expensive 
  • Need to order an adaptor from SeaSucker for certain fork styles 

What Recent Buyers Report

Recent buyers were thoroughly impressed by the quick and easy installation. Many said they could install and remove this carrier in less than a minute. They also enjoyed the discreet size, which is small enough to store the entire rack in their trunk when it is not in use.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This unique bike carrying system stood out to us is mostly down to how convenient it is. Not only will this bike rack work with just about any vehicle, but it is also really compact and lightweight. The fact that professionals trust this carrier to transport their incredibly expensive bikes speaks volumes for its quality.

We also appreciated that each carrier is handmade in the USA, and the company’s customer service line is responsive and helpful.

Bottom Line

If you are looking for a roof-mounted bike rack for your Prius, you cannot go wrong with the Talon bike carrier from SeaSucker. While it is a bit on the expensive side, it is very well made.

Are All Bike Racks The Same? 

Not all bike racks are the same; in fact, bike racks are available in a wide variety of styles, sizes, and configurations.  Due to the different dimensions, some bike racks will only work with certain types of vehicles, which is why it is so important to check if a prospective bike rack is compatible with your Prius before you buy it.

Aside from vehicle compatibility, some of the ways bike racks differ from one another are the number of bikes they hold. They also attach to the vehicle in many different ways. For example, roof bike racks attach to the vehicle's roof, while hitch mounted bike racks attach to the trailer hitch at the vehicle's rear.

Why Did These Prius Compatible Bike Racks Make Our List? 

When we were narrowing down our list of the six best Toyota Prius bike racks, we tried to find the perfect balance between price and performance. To do so, we considered the following features:

Durability and Build Quality

We wanted to make sure that any bike rack we recommend is built to last. All of the bike racks we reviewed use durable materials rather than cheap plastics, so they will stand up to the rigors of regular use.

SeaSucker Talon

Stability

We also made sure that each bike rack we picked is capable of carrying bikes stably and securely. Whether it was a single bike carrier or a full four bike rack, stability was one of our most important concerns, as it makes sure the bikes and your vehicle are protected.

Ease of Installation

Some bike racks are incredibly time-consuming and frustrating to install, which is why we made sure we were recommending bikes that can be installed and removed quickly and easily.

Bike Rack Types For a Prius

The Toyota Prius is a fairly compact vehicle, so they are not compatible with every type of bike rack. However, the following types are suitable options:

Hitch-Mounted Bike Racks

As long as the Prius has a hitch mount, you can attach a hitch-mounted bike rack to the rear of the vehicle. These racks tend to be the easiest to load and unload. Not only are they convenient to use, they usually have the highest bike capacity limits. If you are planning on carrying more than two bikes at a time, you might want to choose a hitch-mounted rack.

Roof Mounted Bike Racks

While the Prius is not a vehicle you associate with roof rails, don't worry. There are roof-mounted bike racks that do not require existing roof rails. The SeaSucker suction cup carriers are an excellent example. Roof racks work quite well with the Prius because the low roof height makes it fairly easy to load and unload bikes from the rack. These are a great option if you want to have full access to the trunk while carrying bikes.

Trunk Mounted Bike Racks

Trunk mounted bike racks work by creating tension against the surface of the vehicle’s trunk. They use padding and support straps to cling to the back of the vehicle. They are a great option for the Prius; however, they do prevent the user from accessing their trunk while the rack is attached.

Cautious Considerations to Keep in Mind 

Before you choose a new bike rack for your Toyota Prius, you must keep the following factors in mind.

Bike Compatibility

Some bike racks can only accommodate certain types of bikes. Unfortunately, some manufacturers try to disguise this fact and do not state which bikes work with their rack. For example, if you own a full-suspension mountain bike, be very careful that you are choosing a bike rack that can hold a bike that does not have a solid frame.

Thule T2 Pro XT

Accurate Bike Capacity Limits

Some bike rack manufacturers will stretch the truth when reporting the number of bikes their bike rack can carry. Just because a bike rack has four spots for bikes does not mean it can hold that many at a time. Often, these racks hold the bikes so close together, they don't work with anything but slim road bikes.

Additional Requirements

Some bike racks require you to purchase additional adaptors and mounting devices and the manufacturers will often disguise this fact in the small print. Make sure any new bike rack you purchase comes with all the parts you need to use it.

Conclusion 

Choosing a new bike rack for your Toyota Prius does not have to be a complicated or frustrating process. As long as you are choosing one that can carry the correct number of bikes and is compatible with a Prius, you should be okay. Use our reviews to find some of the best racks on the market today.

People Also Ask

If you have more questions, don’t worry. Here are some of the most common things people wonder about when trying to choose the best bike racks for their Priuses.

Can You Put a Bike Rack on a Prius?

Yes, you can install a bike rack on a Toyota Prius. Several bike rack manufacturers offer bike racks that work with vehicles like the Prius.

Can You Use a Rooftop Bike Rack if You Don't Have a Luggage Rack?

Yes, you can install a rooftop bike rack if your vehicle does not have roof rails. Several roof rack manufacturers get around the need for roof rails by using powerful suction cups.

How Many Bikes Can a Prius Transport?

The number of bikes you can transport with your Prius will depend on the type of bike rack you purchase. Some of the larger hitch mounted bike racks can carry as many as six bikes; however, more often than not, most Prius owners will carry a maximum of four bikes at a time.

I used to work in construction and landscaping, so I've seen my fair share of ratchet straps, winches, and similar rigging gear. I started Winch Central because I've seen some nasty accidents due to crappy rigging or poor practice. I wanted to be able to recommend good equipment that's SAFE and also provide resources for how its used. I handle the research side of things here as well as product selection for gear reviews.