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  1. #1
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    Lowered cars and bike racks

    Ok so I currently have a truck but in the not to distance future I am replacing it with probably a Honda Fit which will get lowered.

    Does anyone haul with a lowered car? Do you use a roof rack or hitch mount? Can roof racks fit a BMX and an MTB?
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  2. #2
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    I used to haul with a lowered Focus SVT and Lancer Evo. I use Yakima roof rack and bike trays. I still use the Evo from time to time (especially for snowboard trips) but I like the convenience of just tossing bikes over the tailgate on my truck. The truck is nicer when the roads get rough to the trails as well.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Mackenzie View Post
    I used to haul with a lowered Focus SVT and Lancer Evo. I use Yakima roof rack and bike trays. I still use the Evo from time to time (especially for snowboard trips) but I like the convenience of just tossing bikes over the tailgate on my truck. The truck is nicer when the roads get rough to the trails as well.
    I will need a back seat at some point in the not to distance future (my current truck is a Ford Ranger single cab) and I don't want to pay for the gas on a big truck. Plus I hate driving trucks daily.
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  4. #4
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    Fold the backseats down. Reviewers say it can fit a bike without taking off its wheels.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by UEDan View Post
    Fold the backseats down. Reviewers say it can fit a bike without taking off its wheels.
    That's going to be a tight fit in the back of a Fit, I don't believe this is true. Unfortunately Honda doesn't offer a roof rack or hitch option for the Fit but there are aftermarket options available. I've seen both.

  6. #6
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    Ask Harold, he drives a Fit. Doubt it is lowered, though.
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  7. #7
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    I did for years on a track ready MR2. I'm very, very glad I don't have to do that anymore!

    I used a one-off trunk rack. I would dial down the compression damping on the struts, but it just works so poorly. Roof racks will hold 2 mountain bikes if you wanted to do that. With a lowered car, a hitch rack is basically useless. You'll get stuck on everything and damage the rack.

    A roof rack is really the only way to go with a lowered car, but then you get roof rack downsides.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by UEDan View Post
    Fold the backseats down. Reviewers say it can fit a bike without taking off its wheels.
    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    Ask Harold, he drives a Fit. Doubt it is lowered, though.
    Correct, mine is not lowered.

    My wife's bike would fit with the wheels on (extra small Juliana Furtado), but it would be tight.

    My bikes MIGHT fit (medium frame size), but it wouldn't be pretty. On a fork mount, the rear tire absolutely HAS to poke between the two front seats. My elbows hit it when I shift (MT). Put the front tire on, and I'd have to slide the passenger seat all the way forward (blocking my view out the right window).

    Plus, I hauled bikes inside the car (front wheel off, on fork mounts) for 11yrs or so and that kinda thing beats the hell out of the interior of a car like that (inexpensive interior, cheap upholstery, no rubberized or plastic seat back). I started putting my bike on a roof mount this year because I just got fed up with it, and also because I'm taking my bike out a lot more frequently now that I'm coaching a youth mtb team.

  9. #9
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    More room than you think in some of these tiny cars. I had a loaner Toyota Yaris hatchback when my full sized Ram was having body work repairs from a crash. I was able to shoe-horn my XL Kona 153 Process into the back of that thing. Had to flip rear seats down, push passenger seat all the way forward to dash, remove front wheel and it would just barely allow me to wiggle it into place and close hatch.

    Needless to say...it's great to have my truck back!
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold View Post
    Correct, mine is not lowered.

    My wife's bike would fit with the wheels on (extra small Juliana Furtado), but it would be tight.

    My bikes MIGHT fit (medium frame size), but it wouldn't be pretty. On a fork mount, the rear tire absolutely HAS to poke between the two front seats. My elbows hit it when I shift (MT). Put the front tire on, and I'd have to slide the passenger seat all the way forward (blocking my view out the right window).

    Plus, I hauled bikes inside the car (front wheel off, on fork mounts) for 11yrs or so and that kinda thing beats the hell out of the interior of a car like that (inexpensive interior, cheap upholstery, no rubberized or plastic seat back). I started putting my bike on a roof mount this year because I just got fed up with it, and also because I'm taking my bike out a lot more frequently now that I'm coaching a youth mtb team.
    I am not sure an XL bike would fit then.

    Sounds like an aftermarket roof mount would be the ticket.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by 93EXCivic View Post
    Ok so I currently have a truck but in the not to distance future I am replacing it with probably a Honda Fit which will get lowered.

    Does anyone haul with a lowered car? Do you use a roof rack or hitch mount? Can roof racks fit a BMX and an MTB?
    As far as I was able to determine, the only roof rack that will handle everything from a 20" BMX to a 27.5" with 3" tires or a standard 29er is the Yakima Frontloader. (Not sure if it will fit a 29+ - might).

    Lowered cars and bike racks-img_1924.jpg
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  12. #12
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    seasucker. with a fit you could probably use the hornet... though maybe not if lowered. certainly any of the roof models would work and hold anything where you can use a fork mount.

    or any other roof rack, if you get rails there's lots of options out there which are quite nice. the rockymounts ones can handle wheels on fatbikes, down to 34" min wheel base--is your bmx long enough?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbmtb View Post
    34" min wheel base-
    I've got 26" DJ bikes that are too short for those!
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  14. #14
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    Yeah there is no way the BMX has a 34" wheelbase.

    I could run the Yakima Frontloader and then if I got a fatbike or 29+ get a Rockymounts on the other side.
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  15. #15
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    I've got a GTI and its lowered with a hitch rack. I've done the putting the bike in the car, roof rack...and now the hitch rack. The hitch rack wins hands down. It's so much more convenient than any of the other methods. My bike was covered in mud yesterday...it would have really sucked to put it inside the car. With the bike on the outside of the car leaves more room inside the car.

    You can kinda see the hitch rack on the back of my car.

    My buddy has a Golf wagon...and he also has a hitch rack.

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  16. #16
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    FWIW, I bet a bmx would fit pretty easily in the back of a Fit if it won't easily go on a roof rack.
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  17. #17
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    I'd be concerned about a hitch rack bottoming out if I had one on a lowered car.
    Though you may have better roads where you live...

    A MTB with the front wheel off actually seems to take up less overall room than a BMX bike (since I'm too lazy to unbolt the front wheel).
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    I'd be concerned about a hitch rack bottoming out if I had one on a lowered car.
    I'd hit my oil pan before hitting the hitch rack.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    I'd hit my oil pan before hitting the hitch rack.
    Awesome.
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  20. #20
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    It's fine. Before this, I had the rack on a lowered BMW.

    The thing is, you aren't going to be scraping or having problems 99.99% of the time due to two big factors:

    1, most decent hitch racks do not just extend out, they extend out AND up.

    2, you'll rip the air-dam/splitter/bumper off first due to a change in grade. When you own a low car, you learn to take grade-changes at an angle, like pulling into or out of an entrance. When it's really low, you simply do not take the car into a place that you are not sure you can get out of. If you are driving low cars straight at grade-changes, yes, you might scrape, it's very likely you'll rip off some front fascia in the process too.

    With these in mind, it's no issue. I've never scraped on a WRX, a lowered BMW, camaro SS 1 and Camaro SS 2 with 1LE track package (lots of lower aero parts). If the car can take a towbar, like 95% of cars can, go for it. Often, even if it's "not available" in the US, the same car in Europe is offered with a towbar or someone makes one for it. It's rare that you can not get one.


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  21. #21
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    Ok thanks. I was worried about the hitch or rack dragging when the front wheels where going over a driveway entrance or like.
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by 93EXCivic View Post
    Ok thanks. I was worried about the hitch or rack dragging when the front wheels where going over a driveway entrance or like.
    Depends on the rack whether that will be a concern or not.

    The Kuat NV, for example, sticks straight out from the receiver for a bit before it rises (it's related to the anti-wobble adjustment). So with more overhang distance, clearance in those situations becomes a concern.

  23. #23
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    I use a hitch rack on my Ford Fiesta. Not lowered, but I have been contemplating dropping it about an inch. I occasionally drag the hitch itself (not the rack) on bad driveways. I'm going to see how it does with some trips this summer and then decide on lowering it from stock (already running different shocks). Although, as I am planning to buy a van next year, I likely won't need the car as my do everything vehicle anyway. That said...

    Why not a van? Even a mini van will get all the inside space you need and the seating. If looking "cool" in a minivan is an issue, then you aren't mountain biking right

    My girlfriend removes the front wheel of my HT and puts it in the back of her Focus with the seat down. I removed the rear seat of my Fiesta and can get two bikes in there, plus two on the hitch. I don't need passenger capacity so I just pulled the seat.

  24. #24
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    Again, take driveways and entrances at an angle, donít drive straight up/down them.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    Again, take driveways and entrances at an angle, donít drive straight up/down them.
    I've been driving lowered cars and race vehicles since I was 13

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    Again, take driveways and entrances at an angle, donít drive straight up/down them.
    I get that. My truck is the first car I have had in a while that isn't lowered. I still sometimes ping parts on speedbumps and stuff.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sidewalk View Post
    Why not a van? Even a mini van will get all the inside space you need and the seating. If looking "cool" in a minivan is an issue, then you aren't mountain biking right
    Cause mini-vans suck to drive, don't come with a manual transmission option and are super lame.

    Exception this 1029hp Odyssey.

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  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by 93EXCivic View Post
    I get that. My truck is the first car I have had in a while that isn't lowered. I still sometimes ping parts on speedbumps and stuff.



    Cause mini-vans suck to drive, don't come with a manual transmission option and are super lame.

    Exception this 1029hp Odyssey.

    This is the one:Lowered cars and bike racks-renault-espace-f1.jpg
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  28. #28
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    I'm using a suction cup roof mount
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by 93EXCivic View Post
    I get that. My truck is the first car I have had in a while that isn't lowered. I still sometimes ping parts on speedbumps and stuff.



    Cause mini-vans suck to drive, don't come with a manual transmission option and are super lame.

    Exception this 1029hp Odyssey.

    Sienna SEs are great to drive and especially the 2015 and newer because of the improved dashboard. The inch lower and sport suspension bits make them handle better than other vans but they're not ridiculously low. Draw-Tite and Torklift make hidden hitches for the vans that look way better than what post people get. Your receiver is higher than most minivans have. It's a win if you have the lowered SE model and looks better on any model.

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