My Review of Thule Spare Me XTR 2 Bike Rack

Originally submitted at REI

The Thule Spare Me XTR heavy-duty 2-bike carrier fits onto your rear-mounted spare tire and features reliable, durable construction.

This is a Rack I Can Live With!

By bikish heather from Portland, OR on 5/7/2011


4out of 5

Pros: Durable, Lightweight, Easy to Install, Stable

Cons: Bike nesting

Describe Yourself: Avid Cyclist

Was this a gift?: No

Preparing for an upcoming road trip/temporary move, I needed a bike rack that wouldn’t require hoisting my bikes well above my head, and which would allow access to my dog in the cargo area of my 1999 Honda CRV. Originally I had tried a similar spare tire rack by Yakima, a company local to me. Unfortunately it had a design problem that saw me exchanging for this Thule.

Right away the Thule was easier to deal with: lighter weight, easier to install, more intuitive design. Most importantly though, it was solidly secured on my car, unlike the other one.

It is a bummer, I’m having trouble loading both of my bikes on the unit as-is. I think I’ll need to remove my saddles before my trip, as the bars aren’t playing nicely enough with the saddle of the other bike to allow both bikes to fit as they should on the rack (even when adjusting the tube rests on the unit). If the bar arms were a little longer I think I could make it work, but one saddle already has a small gouge out of it from the bars of the other bike when I was trying to nest the two together. If removing the saddles doesn’t work, I’ll just leave one of my bikes at home—but at least I’m more confident that whatever bike I load back there will be nice and solid and actually survive the trip.


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