Thule Vertex General Review

I own a neighborhood bike shop, and all my customers are demanding for a car bike rack that suits their needs, especially one that can fit more than one bike and is easily accessible from the back. Fortunately, Thule rolled out the Vertex series of hitch-mounted bike racks that seemed a gift from the wizards at Thule.

My customers already know the fears of entrusting their thousand-dollar bikes to a roof rack mounting that is not secure enough without buying additional doohickeys. With the Vertex series, they all agree that the racks are all firmly built, both on the outside and the inside. Longevity is no longer an issue for those racks, even though they cost at least $250. They also look good, too, blending nicely with the rear spare tires and whatnot.

What’s more, the Vertex series is the very definition of the smart car bike rack. First of all, the installation process is a breeze. They would assemble it in one minute and then disassemble it the next, just like clockwork. Another proof of the smartness is the folding feature. By tinkering with the two release handles, they could easily tuck the rack away to give way for the trunk door. And the additional “swing away” feature of the Vertex 9031 just adds to the portability. Another major boon of the Vertex series is its versatility. All bike types practically fit into the racks with minimal to no effort, and there is enough clearing space for all sizes, ensuring visibility of the rear view.

When the customers come back to talk about the Vertex racks they bought from me, they would talk about several minor annoyances. One is the lack of a proprietary hitch lock, which they must buy from me separately. Due to that annoyance, I am planning to request that Thule add the hitch lock to the racks as a special set. Another complaint is the lack of any antitheft feature. As with the first annoyance, I will also request Thule about their plans for a specially-designed antitheft contraption that is compatible with all Vertex models.

The general major disappointment my customers found out about the Vertex series is the rubber straps that hold the bikes in place. Simply put, they easily rip. I aired that complaint to Thule and they responded with this: “We admit that our earlier models had weaker straps that were made of a different rubber blend. Since then, we have improved our straps, and if you have unsold units with the old straps, we will gladly replace them at no extra charge.” At least Thule did something about this.