Sherpa 2.0 vs EasyFold XT | Which is a better hitch bike rack? | Kuat vs Thule bike rack

Published by Bike Scientist on

Are you looking for the top hitch bike racks in the market to haul your bikes on a road trip? If you have narrowed it down to Sherpa and EasyFold, this review on Kuat vs Thule bike rack is for you. Both of these brands are competitive and that is why choosing one over the other seems a bit difficult.

Both Thule vs Kuat bike racks specifically, EasyFold XT and Sherpa 2.0 are platform-style racks for carrying two bikes and these racks share many features. Choosing one of them gets a bit more tricky since both of these are compatible with almost the same types of vehicles. 

So in this article, we will explore the features in detail and discuss which of these racks is better than the other. For your convenience, we will use our Rack Score-based rating system to clearly define the differences between Kuat vs Thule bike racks.  

Comparing key features of Kuat vs Thule bike rack

The table below compares Kuat vs Thule bike rack specifically Sherpa 2.0 vs EasyFold XT for various features. 

Key features Kuat Sherpa 2.0Thule EasyFold XT
Max. Bike capacity22
Expandable No No 
Load capacity (per bike)40 lb65 lb
Weight 35 lb45 lb
Material AluminumAluminum and plastic 
Security Rack and bike security locks includedRack and bike security locks included
Type of rack Platform Hitch bike rack Platform Hitch bike rack 
Hitch type 1.25″ & 2″1.25″ & 2″
Compatible vehiclesVehicles that can tow class 1-2 trailer hitchVehicles that can tow class 1-4 trailer hitch
Compatible bikes Max. Wheelbase: 47″Max. tire width: 3″Max. wheel size: 29”Max. Wheelbase: 51”Max. tire width: 3”Max. wheel size: 29”
Car trunk accessYes Yes
Available add-ons Adapter for 20”-24” bikes
RackDock for garage storage
pilot v2 for swing away feature
Thule carbon frame protector 
Thule XXL Fatbike Wheel Straps
Key selling point LightweightLower cost three different looks
No frame contact
Electric bike compatible
Bike loading ramp
Premium quality 
Price Check amazon Check amazon 

Our evaluation of Sherpa and Easyfold racks using rack score 

Bike Rack Score (R score)

In order to facilitate your research for the best bike rack (Kuat vs Thule bike rack) for your vehicle and biking needs, we have formulated one score, R Score, to rate bike racks. This single measure of performance covers multiple factors such as rack features, value for money, customer satisfaction, brand value, aesthetics, and security. 

The statistical science and research behind assigning weights are in process but the overall score can still give you an excellent idea in one single overall score for the rack. In order to assign comparative scores, we evaluate each metric on a score of 1 to 10. Below is a table with the metrics and the assigned weight for the overall score ‘Rack score’. 

Value for money15%
C Satisfaction25%
Brand Value15%
R ScoreWeighted

Rack score comparison table for Thule vs Kuat bike racks

The table below presents Kuat vs Thule bike rack specifically Sherpa 2.0 vs EasyFold XT. The score for each metric is based on 10 and then a cumulative weighted R score is calculated for both racks.

Key Features Sherpa 2.0 and EasyFold XT

Hitch bike racks are heavy and it is not easy to remove them for accessing the car hatch takes times. But with a tilt-away feature, you can easily slide the rack away from the car and open the rear door of your car. Kuat vs Thule bike racks, both have foot-assisted tilting features that work even when bikes are loaded. 

Apart from that, we like both racks for their ability to fold. This feature is essential for storage purposes and also if you want to keep the rack mounted even when not in use. Kuat can be folded upwards so it does not extend the length of the vehicle while the trays of EasyFold fold vertically. EasyFold also has a handle and wheels for easily carrying it. 

Most racks have bike cradles, or wheel holders placed very close which does not create a safe gap between bikes. But Kuat vs Thule bike racks, both ensure a safe distance of 14” and 9” respectively. This protects the two bikes from coming and contact and this is why you can trust these racks for your expensive bikes. 

Both Sherpa and EasyFold hold the bikes through the wheels and secure them with the help of straps. Sherpa has ratcheting arms that grip the front tire of bikes just below the frame. So there is no chance of damaging the frame. However, EasyFold has a bike-holding arm that grips the seat post as shown below. 

Comparing the weight of the Kuat vs Thule bike rack, Sherpa weighs 35 lb and is lighter than 45 lb EasyFold. Sherpa can have an upper bike weight limit of 40 pounds while EasyFold is capable of carrying up to 65 pounds per bike, and for loading such heavy bikes, it also provides a folding ramp. 

Which bike rack has more value for money?

While evaluating the value of money, we compare the features that racks provide in the overall cost. As for Kuat vs Thule bike racks, both racks provide a tilt-away feature, locks for rack and bikes, and have foldable designs. 

While both racks are premium and priced accordingly, we found the Thule’s Easy Fold XT slightly pricier than its counterpart at Kuat. The fact that both of these racks provide the basic features that are required of hitch bike racks, gives an edge to Sherpa. Hence with a slight difference, Sherpa 2.0 ranks better.

Have a limited budget? Compare the costs of different types of bike racks

How satisfied are customers with Thule and Kuat bike racks?

While rating racks, we give high importance to customer satisfaction while also keeping in view genuine reviews. Thus, this particular metric has the highest weightage with the overall R score, 25% weightage to be precise. The picture below shows the top reviews from verified buyers of both racks. 

By analyzing more than a thousand ratings from different platforms (including Amazon and other sources) we found both racks, Kuat vs Thule bike rack, to be rated above 4.5 which means they are doing great. But Sherpa 2.0 seems to be doing even better since we found a higher overall rating for the rack for an even greater volume of ratings.

Bike rack security and bike security 

Thule EasyFold has two integrated locks. One is meant to secure the rack through a hitch pin and the other one is present on the rack that locks the bikes to the rack. Thule has a reliable one-key system that lets you use the same key for all the integrated locks.

Sherpa, on the other hand, has a semi-integrated security system with a hitch pin and cable lock included. Since both the racks have the feature which allows locking the rack to the vehicle and the bike to the rack, during the Kuat vs Thule bike rack comparison on security, we rate them equally. 

Aesthetics of the bike racks 

We like Sherpa’s minimalist design and that it stands out compared to other bike racks. Tire cradles on this rack fold up and down to give more space and make the bike rack look minimalist. They have three different options in colors which we think are just about enough to match any vehicle out there.

As for Thule, we think it is one of the most elite premium-look racks. It becomes very compact and is fully foldable. It is available in greyish-black color and looks good mounted on most vehicles. But if we have to score Kuat vs Thule bike rack on aesthetics we would have to vote for Kuat. 

Capacity and Compatibility 

Kuat vs Thule bike racks, Sherpa and Thule EasyFold are both made to carry a maximum of two bikes. You can also use these racks to carry one bike safely. However, both of these racks are not expandable because there are no tray add-ons available for them. 

As for compatibility, both racks are compatible with vehicles as long as they have the required hitch receiver. Also, both of these racks are compatible with most bikes but require an adapter for fat bikes. Thus while analyzing Kuat vs Thule bike rack on capacity and compatibility, we score them equally with an R score of 8.

Own more than 2 bikes? We have reviewed the top 4-bike hitch racks

Overall Verdict 

At an R score of 9.0 Kuat Sherpa 2.0 rates better than Thule EasyFold XT which scored 8.7. In our analysis of the Kuat vs Thule bike rack, at most metrics, the racks scored equally such as capacity, security, and brand value. However, due to the lower price and higher customer satisfaction, Kuat Sherpa 2.0 is the leading bike rack here. 

How to install Kuata Sherpa 2.0 ?

For installing Kuat Sherpa 2.0, you need to make sure that your vehicle has the right hitch receiver. If your car does not have a trailer hitch you need to buy it separately and get it installed. If you have a different size receiver you would have to use a hitch adapter.  

The installation of the Kuat vs Thule bike rack is different because Sherpa requires the assembly of the parts before installation. Read our detailed guide to the assembly of Kuat Sherpa in the “How to install a bike rack on SUV that is mounted on a hitch?” section. 

For installing the Kuat Sherpa 2.0, first place the rack in the receiver by turning the hitch base 90 degrees from the tray, as shown below. Once the rack is sturdy, attach the hitch to the receiver and slightly push. Slide the rack into the receiver effortlessly by taking the hitch bolt and inserting it into the hitch pin.

Finally, you may fasten the bolt, snap the hitch pin onto the bolt, then secure it with the provided keys. Then with the help of the foot pedal, you can lower the trays at 90 degrees and the rack would be ready to carry bikes. Depending on the size of the bike’s wheels, expand the inner tray’s ratcheting arm by raising it. Place the front wheel on the uncovered wheel cradle and the rear wheel on pivoting cradle.

FAQs on Kuat vs Thule bike rack

Where is Thule made?

Thule is a Swedish company, they claim that its roof racks are 100% made in Sweden. As for the remaining products, other sources claim they are 75% made in Sweden.

Where are Kuat racks manufactured?

Küat has its headquarters in Springfield USA while its manufacturing is done in Taiwan and China

How does Kuat compare to Thule? 

Kuat vs Thule bike rack comparison depends on the specific rack of the brand. As per our evaluation of Sherpa 2.0 and EasyFold XT, both racks do pretty well but Kuat Sherpa 2.0 does slightly better.

Where to buy Kuat bike rack?

You can buy a Kuat bike rack from Amazon or try their official website.

Why are Thule racks so expensive?

Thule racks are expensive because of the brand value and expensive labor as well. Since it is the leading brand in making bike racks it can charge a premium for its products. Apart from that, they are doing a lot of manufacturing in Europe where labor is relatively expensive thus it costs more if we compare Thule vs Kuat bike rack. 

Are Thule bike racks worth it?

Yes, we think Thule bike racks are worth it because they have been in the industry for so long and are the pioneers of multiple designs in bike racks. They have an active research and development department in Sweden which works with car manufacturers to ensure rack compatibility and other requirements. Read our reviews on other Thule racks such as roof bike racks, Insta Gater Pro, tailgate pad, and Outway platform.

Kuat vs Thule vs Yakima

In our upcoming article, we will do comparison between these three major bike rack brands. Stay tuned!

How to install Kuata Sherpa 2.0 ?

Read our step-by-step guide on the installation of Kuat Sherpa.

Categories: Uncategorized

Bike Scientist

S Chaudhry is the founder and the first writer for BikesRacks. He covers almost all the bike reviews after doing a lot of secondary and primary (hands on) research on the products. Apart from that he is the author of a number of how to do articles as well on the website. He is an avid road bike cyclists who is dealing in a lot of areas related to biking. Currently he has gained experience fixing bikes to retailing accessories related to them as well. His eventual goal is to build an authority site on cycling and also become a profession bike fitter.


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