Best rack for an 01 Golf and 26er/29er?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    Saskatchewan, Canada
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    Best rack for an 01 Golf and 26er/29er?

    My bike is a 20" frame Kona Big Kahuna and my girlfriend's bike is a Kona Lisa. Neither bike is particularly light. We've got a somewhat crappy hitch mount rack that we use on her 08 CR-V.

    ... but I like getting a bazillion miles per gallon so we'll be using the Golf TDI for road trips.

    Everyone here seems to recommend hitch racks. The issue with the Mk4 Golf seems to be the low rear clearance. With a hitch installed, that clearance will be even less.

    Also, the back window does get somewhat grimy with dirt and soot after a long road trip.

    Lastly, I have a little boat that I'd like to pull with the Golf (12' with a tiny engine) so I'm considering getting a hitch anyway but I was thinking of a Euro Hitch. The Euro Hitch won't take a bike rack (that I know of).

    Roof rack - wind noise and hassle loading/unloading

    Hitch mount - potentially gets in the way of the boat/forces a standard receiver hitch/exhaust and road grime

    Saris Bones hatch rack - might work with the boat or might not/road and exhaust grime


    Not having boat and bike capability isn't a deal killer, just a nice to have.

    There seems to be a lot of Golf owners here. I'd appreciate some opinions.

  2. #2
    ballbuster
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    IMO, go for hitch. If you're worried about your bikes interfering with pulling a boat, put the bikes in the boat. I mean, you can only tow a 1500 pound boat (and trailer) anyway.

    Dirt and grime from being behind the car... I never had that issue.

    Rear clearance... well, if you pull in and out of steep ramps, my Performance bike X-Port Flatbed rack sometimes drags. It would drag more when folded up, since the arms extended down a few inches. The trick is to pull in and out at an angle. Really no biggie.

    I own pretty much exclusively 29ers. The hitch rack fit is a non-issue.

    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/jB-DhOEGOCrKa3WwuMxvgw?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/_zZ7tZYTZu1o/S_oYoNwZufI/AAAAAAAAPoE/sHmTmpOs0Cg/s800/IMG_0514.JPG" height="600" width="800" /></a>

    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/srwvRkFwOVxq4R9uA9xlkg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/_zZ7tZYTZu1o/SXwBCZeOovI/AAAAAAAAGVY/4xPrFpPlLSU/s800/IMG_1060.JPG" height="600" width="800" /></a>

  3. #3
    Saskatchewan, Canada
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    Thanks for the response.

    I see you have a Mk3. The Mk4 is even lower.

    Does that rack fold down to allow access to the hatch?

  4. #4
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    I've got a Yakima roof rack with a viper mount. I love it. With the fairing theres absolutely no wind noise. Its not a pain at all to lift the bike. If you go biking often its the best way to go. You can leave it on your car at all times, access to your hatch at all times, and you can have your bike loaded on it in 45 seconds. And stock MKIVs arent really low. Mines slammed.
    Last edited by riddie; 02-08-2011 at 03:24 PM.

  5. #5
    ballbuster
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    I had a MK3

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Brown
    Thanks for the response.

    I see you have a Mk3. The Mk4 is even lower.

    Does that rack fold down to allow access to the hatch?
    GTi, which is about an inch lower from the factory than a regular Golf. IIRC, the MK4 regular Golf is not that low, so I wouldn't even worry about it.

    I also liked that there was no perceivable mileage hit with bikes on the back. When I used a roof rack with my GTi, it would go from 31 mpg on the freeway to 25 with a bike on top (28mpg with a rack and no bike). With the A4, I go from 28 mpg to 25 because the bikes stick up in the wind over the rear trunk lid. I'm sure the hit is still way less than if I used roof racks (not to mention jacking up the paint with a roof rack).

    Yes, the X-Port Flatbed folds down, but the hatch can clear it when folded up with no bikes mounted if you flex it back a tad. You can't fold it down with a bike on it, unfortunately.

    The GTi was a great car. I had it up to 250k miles or so before I sold it to get an Audi A4, and the only thing wrong with it was the clearcoat on the roof was separating, and the ABS computer was intermittently cutting out. On MK3 cars equipped with ABS, they left off the load balancing valve in the brakes, so the rears would lock up all the time in the rain. I guess they figured the ABS would take care of that function. Drove me batty. I could not for the life of me find a used ABS module for this car. The 4 cylinder cars used a different ABS module than the VR6 cars, and they didn't build many 4 cylinder cars with ABS. That was part of why I sold it.

    On the A4, there is more overhang from the rear axle back, and I have the sport package so that is an inch lower than regular. I occasionally scrape the trailer hitch with no rack or bikes on there, but it really is not a big deal.

    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/3LwF6uktn9GnZlUioqvVbw?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/_zZ7tZYTZu1o/S5MKPARJfOI/AAAAAAAANVk/94Az6GaNYOM/s800/IMG_0363.JPG" height="600" width="800" /></a>
    Last edited by pimpbot; 02-09-2011 at 12:21 PM.

  6. #6
    Kaishingo
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Brown
    Thanks for the response.

    I see you have a Mk3. The Mk4 is even lower.

    Does that rack fold down to allow access to the hatch?

    I had a Mk4 GTI with a tray style Hollywood hitch rack. And it was lowered. Not "slammed" - it was setup for track/autocross. I scraped the very end of the rack a few times on some really steep driveways, but only ever got the very tip of the rack. I might have a picture of the setup on my work computer; I'll try posting tomorrow.

  7. #7
    Kaishingo
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    Found some pics:






  8. #8
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    After working in auto insurance claims for the last 6 years I can tell you the most common accident is a rearender...which is why my bikes go on top. Bad enough that my car would get damaged from a careless driver so why add insult to injury by adding my bike to the list of damaged items.
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  9. #9
    Kaishingo
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    Quote Originally Posted by A1an
    After working in auto insurance claims for the last 6 years I can tell you the most common accident is a rearender...which is why my bikes go on top. Bad enough that my car would get damaged from a careless driver so why add insult to injury by adding my bike to the list of damaged items.
    Let me ask you this, since you worked in that industry. If I did get rear-ended, and my bike was damaged, would the party at fault be responsible for getting me a new bike?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by wuzilla
    Let me ask you this, since you worked in that industry. If I did get rear-ended, and my bike was damaged, would the party at fault be responsible for getting me a new bike?
    Really depends on how much damage and what carrier you are dealing with. Some carriers will pay to repair while others will just pay out the value of the bike. Just keep in mind some carriers are more liberal than others...some will pay replacement cost so you can buy the new version of whatever you have while others will pay actual cash value.

    What is actual cash value? Basically if you have a 2007 Anthem they won't pay you the cost for a 2011 they will determine the value of your used bike. Techincally this is the correct way to handle the loss of this type but not all carriers handle it that way.
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