Thule T2 Pro bike rack review

Top selling rack revamped and better in every way

Gear
The Thule T2 Pro is an improvement over its predecessor, the T2 i every way.

The Thule T2 Pro is an improvement over its predecessor in every way.

Lowdown: Thule T2 Pro Bike Rack

The Thule T2 Pro is the update we’ve been waiting for to address compatibility with bigger wheel sizes. But not only did capacity get upped, the T2 Pro is now sturdier and easier to operate. The frame has been beefed up significantly, moving parts have been retooled, and even the lever to tilt and fold up the rack has been significantly improved.

Stat Box
Bike capacity: 2 Weight: 50 pounds
Expandable: Up to four bikes Price: $550
Tire compatibility: Road bike to 5.0″ fat tire Rating: 5 Flamin' Chili Peppers 5 out of 5

Pluses
Minuses
  • Best in class tilt lever
  • Sliding arms could be tighter and wobble free
  • Sturdy with smooth tilting action
  • Limited side-to-side rail adjustability
  • Broad tire/wheel size compatibility
  • Not as sleek looking as competitors
  • Tool free install, built-in lock knob and hitch-pin
    • Reliable security system
    • Excellent looks and finish

    Review: Thule T2 Pro Bike Rack

    The Thule T2 Pro is an improvement over its predecessor in every way — and it has an edge over much of the competition. Versatility and ease of use are its strong points.

    The tilt lever is now conveniently placed in the outermost side of the rack for easy access.

    The tilt lever is now conveniently placed in the outermost side of the rack for easy access.

    Installation

    Hitch racks come in a box and have to be assembled. The old T2 took at least an hour to assemble and there was room for error, increasing the chances of problems down the road. The new T2 Pro only takes about 10 minutes. You just have to attach the rails with eight bolts and install the lock cores if desired.

    Hitch pin sets the location of the rack and serves as a safety mechanism in case the cam ever gets loose or not tightened properly.

    The hitch pin sets the location of the rack and serves as a safety mechanism in case the cam ever gets loose or is not tightened properly.

    The impressive innovation of this rack that we haven’t seen in any of the competition is in installation and removal from your vehicle. Instead of a separate hitch bolt or pin that is tightened by a socket wrench, the Thule integrates a retractable hitch pin on the rack. Align it and feed it through. That’s it. This pin also acts as a failsafe mechanism that is really only necessary if the true retention mechanism gets loose.

    The rack is held securely by an expanding hitch cam system tightened with this knob.

    The rack is held securely by an expanding hitch cam system tightened with this knob.

    Retention is performed by a cam in the rack that expands and tightens itself to the hitch. This removes play and wobble at the same time. Tightening is performed by a rubberized knob that integrates a lock core. When locked, the knob fails to catch and thus the rack cannot be loosened or stolen.

    Sturdiness

    All the features in the world are useless if the rack is not sturdy. Rest assured, the T2 Pro is very beefy with a main swiveling mechanism that has no play or wobble. The sliding arms could be a little tighter on the aluminum carrier, and a bigger release button would make it easier to operate. But we’re pleased to see no more foam covers on the rack arm that would eventually deteriorate.

    The pivot system is incredibly smooth and beefy.

    The pivot system is smooth and beefy.

    Compatibility

    This is where the rack really shines, as it is compatible with pretty much all known bikes and wheel sizes, from road to 5.0” fatties without the need for add-ons or reconfiguring the arms.

    It is compatible with more vehicles now too, as the it has four more inches of ground clearance compared to the previous T2. In addition, it is two inches farther from the car so the hatch can be opened (with rack folded down) even with wider bars. Folded up, the rack is 4” farther away from your car to accommodate spare tires on vehicles such as the Jeep Wrangler.

    The front tire basket accepts and supports any front tire nicely.

    The front basket accepts and supports all tire sizes.

    Bottom Line

    This rack is the total package with impressive locking features, as well as spring-return cables, and a locking hitch cam mechanism. It can expand to a four-bike carrier, and will look good doing it year after year with a premium, well-protected finish.

    For more information visit www.thule.com.

    Photo Thumbnails (click to enlarge)
    About the author: Francis Cebedo

    The founder of mtbr and roadbikereview, Francis Cebedo believes that every cyclist has a lot to teach and a lot to learn. "Our websites are communal hubs for sharing cycling experiences, trading adventure stories, and passing along product information and opinions." Francis' favorite bike is the last bike he rode, whether it's a dirt jumper, singlespeed, trail bike, lugged commuter or ultralight carbon road steed. Indeed, Francis loves cycling in all its forms and is happiest when infecting others with that same passion. Francis also believes that IPA will save America.


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    • Dave Strydom says:

      What is frustrating on review is that no one mentions you can’t put two normal fat bikes with 19 or 197 rear spacing on them with out the arms touching. Apart from that it is the most solid. I know I owned one and now got Kuat and the Thule is in all ways better apart from looks. The fundamental flaw is that it needs to be 1/2 inch further apart for each bike.

      • Chris says:

        Actually this isn’t true… I had my LBS put two Specialized Fatboy’s on this rack before i bought it. They both fit. I DO agree that the spacing should be about 1″ wider than it is, but it’s not impossible.

    • Joe says:

      I believe the even newer Thule T2 Pro XT now provides that extra 1″ width between bikes.

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