The Best Toyota 4runner bike rack in 2022

Published by Bike Scientist on

4runner bike rack
4runner bike rack

If you are looking for a 4runner bike rack to carry your bikes along on a road trip, you are at the right place. Whether you are traveling alone or with family and friends, we have got you covered with our step-by-step guide on selecting a rack. This would involve compatibility checks for your 4runner and bike(s). 

Once you know the compatible racks then you can move forward into shortlisting further based on the biking compatibility. Certain bike racks would not accommodate women’s and kid’s bikes while some might not work for e-MTBs. To support you with the research, we have done most of these steps for your Toyota 4runner for you –

Shortlisting the most compatible and suitable bike rack

2022 the ‘Captain of the off-road’ is a full-sized SUV that competes with jeeps and is built for adventure and a variety of terrains. Toyota 4runner. The same vehicle (almost) has been known as Toyota Surf in the past and goes by the name of Toyota Fortuner in some countries. In the US it competes closely with Jeep Grand Cherokee  

Step 1: Evaluate vehicle compatibility

Compatible 4runner comes with factory-fitted roof rails and even the basic SR5 has roof rails installed over the roof. The advantage of roof rails is that they are a prerequisite for most roof bike racks. Two concerns

  • The overall height of the SUV is already higher than an average sedan or a mid-sized SUV. The height would make it difficult to load and unload the bike from the top.
  • If you have a luggage rack, you would have to forego that for installation or at least have a compromised space

4runner hitch mount bike rack

Compatible and Recommended. Hitch racks are the easiest to use and do not occupy additional space in the vehicle. Having a hitch receiver is a pre-requisite for installing a hitch bike rack and the rack needs to be compatible with the hitch receiver. As per our latest info on the Toyota 4runner 2022, it comes with an integrated hitch receiver which has an excellent tow capacity of 5000 pounds. In case you do not have a hitch receiver, you can get the Toyota 4runner trailer hitch tow package which is a Class III 2-inch hitch receiver.

Spare tire mount bike rack

Compatible. Most Toyota 4runners have a spare tire installed on the rear side. You can use that to carry your bike(s) by purchasing a spare tire mount rack.

Trunk bike rack

Compatible and recommended. While tough to find but quite a few trunk bike racks are compatible with Toyota 4runner but you need to ensure compatibility. We checked on the Thule official website and the Thule Gateway pro is compatible with the 4 Runner 4-dr SUV 2010 – 2022. Similarly, Thule Passage and most of their other Trunk bike racks are compatible with the Toyota 4runner. The advantages of a Trunk 4runner bike rack would be

  • No hitch or roof rails required
  • Relatively per bike, it costs less to use a Trunk bike rack

 Truck bed bike rack

These are not recommended because 4runner is not a truck.

Step 2: Check your bike’s compatibility with the rack

Bike racks are not universal with bikes. You need to consider the below

  • Some bike racks have a maximum 3-inch limit for tires and would not accept tires wider than that. For instance, fat bike tires are very wide and might not fit on some hitch-platform bikes 
  • Similarly, you need adapters for some kid’s and even women’s bikes on some bike racks 
  • E-bikes are generally heavy and might fall under the weight limit per bike on the rack 
  • Few bikes such as E Mtbs are compatible with limited bike racks 

Step 3: Consider your requirements

At this point, you need to consider some of the below factors

  • The number of bikes you need to carry on your bike and how often you would need to transport them. Normally for a family, it is more than one bike
  • Should the bike rack touch the frame of your bike? Hitch bike racks don’t come in contact with the frame of the bike and hold it from the wheels but the hanging type bike racks carry the bike from the top tube 
  • Other factors such as the amount of money you want to spend on a bike rack. 

Step 4: Top bike racks list

Thule UpRide

  • 1 Bike
  • Roof
Thule UpRide Roof
Thule UpRide Roof
  • Features…. 8
  • Price……… 7
  • Feedback.. 8.8
  • Brand……. 9
  • Looks……. 7
  • Security…. 8
  • Capacity.. 7
  • No contact with the bike frame
  • Compatible with most roof rails
  • Leaves hitch and trunk free for other uses
  • Requires roof rails
  • Lift bike to the roof

Thule UpRide is a universal rooftop bike rack designed to fit the majority of types of roof rails. It is our top pick 4runner bike roof rack and also the best single bike rack for the roof. This 4runner bike rack comes with its security system and is suitable for all types of carbon frames owing to its no-frame contact design. The bike rack can accommodate wheel sizes up to 3 inches and can carry a bike up to 20 kg or almost 45 pounds. Ideal bike rack if you have one bike and might be using your hitch for attaching something other than a bike rack. …Review Roof Bike Rack Comparison

Thule Passage

Does not require a hitch or a roof rail, unlike hitch and roof bike racks.

The rack comes in both 2 and 3-bike options and differentiates itself from other trunk bike racks for its anti-sway features.

  • Overall Rack Score 7.7
  • Pros: Quality, Sturdy
  • Cons: No locks

  • 3 Bikes
  • Trunk

It is hard to find completely compatible trunk bike racks for full-sized SUVs. Thule passage is compatible with Toyota 4runner and a very cost-effective plug-and-play bike rack for which no roof rails or a hitch receiver is required. This rack scores 7.7/10 and is among our top 10 picks in the specific rack type but it lacks a safety mechanism so if you leave it unattended, you can buy the locks separately. Detailed Review on Thule Passage

Thule T2 Pro

A very premium bike rack that ensures zero scratches to your frame by only attaching to your bike’s tire.

  • Pros: No frame contact, Design,
  • Cons: Capacity of only 2 bikes, price

If you are looking for a premium quality rack to carry two bikes and these bikes are valuable, we recommend Thule T2 Pro XTR. This suggestion is an obvious one considering the good feedback gained by this rack. This rack works with most bike types but is especially recommended for carbon frames because there is no frame contact. You can carry your e-bikes or even fat tire bikes on this platform-style rack easily. You can also install it easily on your 4runner. Overall it is a great option for carrying bikes but it is more expensive compared to other racks here. But take it from us that it is worth the cost.

The best premium platform Thule 4runner bike rack!

Pros E-bike ready, Tilts, Folds, Good aesthetics
Cons High Price
Rating 4.6 out of 5

Price Around $700

Allen Sports 2

Designed to carry up to 2 bikes, this hanging-style hitch bike rack is the most economical bike rack which offers all the basic features of a hitch bike rack

  • Pros: Price
  • Cons: Capacity of only 2 bikes, Security
Allen Sports 2-Bike Hitch
Allen Sports 2-Bike Hitch for Toyota RAV4

Want a hitch mount rack for your 4runner that costs less than Thule T2 Pro? Allen Sports produces the most inexpensive racks in the trunk and hitch mount category. The hitch rack from Allen Sports can be installed on a Toyota 4runner easily on a 1 ¼” hitch receiver. However, if your 4runner has a 2” receiver, the adapter comes along with the rack. Unlike Thule T2, this hanging-style rack is solid but we do not recommend it for carbon frames since there is some frame contact. You can add many additional features such as a locking system and quick install setup. 

Pros Price, Saves Space
Cons Sway back and forth reported
Rating 4.5 out of 5

Price Around $90

Maxxhaul Hitch Mount 2 Bike | Amazon’s Choice

Designed to carry up to 2 bikes, this hanging-style hitch bike rack is another economical bike rack that offers all the basic features of a hitch bike rack

  • Pros: Price, Saves Space
  • Cons: Default Adapter

Another economical bike rack for 4runner. This rack rescues you from the rear visibility issues of most rear-mount racks. This is also a hanging-style hitch mount rack that works on both 1 ¼” and 2” receivers. It offers some useful features such as trunk access, the safety of bikes due to durable cradles, and padded visible columns. All that at a very low cost. Although it’s not a premium rack like Thule T2 Pro, it serves its purpose very well. 

Pros Price, Saves Space
Cons Default adapter, Wobbling
Rating 4.4 out of 5

Price Around $67

Swagman XC2 Hitch Popular, Best Discount Platform

If you are looking for a popular bike rack tested by lots of people and at a good price, the Swagman XC2 hitch mount bike rack is one of the most popular racks selling on Amazon currently at a 35% discount. The rack is compatible with a 1-1/4 inch and 2-inch receiver. The one drawback we see is that you have to buy a locking hitch pin security cable separately.

  • Pros: Price
  • Cons: Separate Security System

Hanging-style racks are inexpensive compared to most platform-style racks. But there are some cases when you do not want to hang your bikes. But finding a good platform rack can be difficult. That’s where Swagman XC2 enters. This is a popular rack of its category made to carry two bikes on a hitch. It works for both 1 ¼” and 2” receivers. It would be compatible with 4runner as long as you have the required hitch. This rack is economical but you will have to buy the rack locking pins separately. But even with the price of a hitch-locking pin included, it would cost you way less than most premium platform hitch-mounted racks. 

Pros Suitable price
Cons Lack security
Rating 4.5/ 5

Hollywood Spare Tire Bike Rack – Unique Style

SR1 Strap-On Spare Tire Bike Rack
Hollywood SR1 Strap-On Spare Tire Bike Rack

If you do not want to spend an extra amount of money on buying a hitch trailer for 4runner, you can install a rack on the spare tire. These racks are relatively less expensive than hitch mounts but do not have a high load-carrying capacity. Thus we recommend these only if you own 1-2 lightweight bikes. The spare mount rack from Hollywood Racks comes fully assembled which saves a lot of time for installation. This rack would not disturb the rearview and you can always fold the bike carrying arms when not loaded with bikes.

Pros Value for money, Locks to the spare vehicle tire
Cons Kids’ bikes require an adapter, Maximum 2 bikes only
Rating 4.3/ 5

Price Around $200

8. Allen Sports Premier – Budget Pick

Allen Sports Premier 2-Bike Spare Tire Rack, S302

Another spare mount 4runner bike rack in the economical range. You can use it for carrying two bikes but since spare tire mount racks work by hanging bikes on arms, you can not rule out frame contact. This rack can be folded when not being used and has features such as quick bike securing straps and dual compound bike cradles.

Pros Value for money
Cons Maximum 2 bikes only
Rating 4.6/ 5

Price Around $100

YAKIMA, Hangover– Vertical 6-Bike Premium Rack

YAKIMA, Hangover– Premium | Vertical Hitch 6 Bike Rack
Yakima Hangover

Want to carry 5 or 6 bikes on the back of your Toyota 4runner? Vertical bike racks are known for their high bike-carrying capacity in minimum space. These racks hang the bikes through their frames and are installed over a hitch. Hangover would work for most bike types including suspension fork mountain bikes. This rack is the most suitable if you are on a road trip with your family or friends who are all biking enthusiasts.

*We highly recommend that you consult about the compatibility of your vehicle with rack manufacturers.

Pros High bike capacity, Brand Quality

Cons Pricey
Rating 4.4 out of 5

Price Around $500

FAQs for 4runner bike rack

What kind of bike rack work with 4runner?

Compatible 4runner bike racks include roof, trunk, and spare tire bike racks but you need to ensure prerequisites. Hitch racks require a compatible hitch receiver, roofs require rails and for a spare tire rack, you need to sure there is a spare tire to fit the bike rack on.

How to install a hitch receiver on a Toyota 4runner?

Review the below video on installing a hitch receiver on the Toyota 4runner (For all models 2010 to 2021 always confirm with the retailer or manufacturer for compatibility)

How to install a hitch receiver on a Toyota 4runner?

How to install a hitch receiver on a Toyota 4runner?

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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