Best Motorcycle Hitch Carriers – 2021 Complete Round-up

| Last Updated: June 25, 2021

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Have you had a rough time trying to transport your motorcycle from one place to another when you can't ride it? Well, there comes a time when you can't ride your bike and have to transport it over a distance before you can start using it again. 

When such a time comes, it is easy to be stranded if you don't know the best way to transport your motorcycle. Take it easy. That's where a hitch carrier comes in handy! A motorcycle hitch carrier attaches to the rear of your car or truck to ease the transportation process. 

Follow us as we explore the best motorcycle hitch carriers available on the market for your bike transportation solutions. 

Comparison of the Best Motorcycle Hitch Carriers

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • Has a haul capacity of up to 500lbs
  • Highlighted by enhanced security with anti tilt device
  • Resists chipping and scratching with heavy duty coating
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  • Made to last out of premium stainless steel
  • Featuring an attractive black painted finish
  • Superb towing of up to 3,000lbs
View Latest Price →

What to Look For When Buying a Motorcycle Hitch Carrier

The best motorcycle hitch carrier is the one that best solves your bike transportation needs. There are several factors to consider before you buy. Such factors include hitch compatibility, carrying capacity, weight capacity, and construction material.

Let's discuss each of these factors briefly. 

Photo credit: motorcycle.com

Hitch Compatibility

You want a hitch carrier that will be compatible with both your motorcycle and the vehicle you're attaching it to. Checking compatibility with the motorcycle calls for checking on the size and weight capacity of the hitch carrier compared to those of the bike. 

The hitch carrier must be as long as your bike and able to carry the weight of it without bending or breaking. 

Vehicle compatibility involves checking the vehicle’s weight limit and comparing this with the weight of the hitch carrier when it's empty and when loaded. The total weight of the loaded hitch carrier should be less than the weight capacity of your vehicle to avoid breaking or bends. 

You should also check for compatibility based on your vehicle’s hitch receiver class compared to the tongue capacity. The table below shows the combination of the class, tongue capacity, and the type of vehicle that you can use to transport your motorcycle.

Class

Tongue Capacity

Vehicle Type

﹤300 Ibs

SUVs, Sedans, Vans, Sub-compact vehicles, Both light, and heavy-duty pickup trucks

﹤525 Ibs

SUVs, Sedans, Vans, Both light, and heavy-duty pickup trucks

﹤1200 Ibs

Vans, SUVs, Light, and heavy-duty pickup trucks

Ⅳ & Ⅴ

Up to 2700 Ibs

Only for the light and heavy-duty pickup trucks

The tongue capacity is a weight measure that refers to how much weight the vehicle can tow safely on a hitch. It's how much weight a vehicle pulling the hitch can withstand. 

Carrying Capacity

Although most hitch carriers only carry one motorcycle, several brands on the market can carry two at a go. You don't have to worry about leaving your second bike behind if you have a double or dual hitch carrier. Or a friend's motorcycle when theirs needs transporting too.

One main thing to note with a double hitch carrier is that it will be more expensive than a single carrier. Ensure also that the total load with both motorcycles on does not exceed the tongue capacity.

Photo credit: 3benefitsof.com

Weight Capacity

Also called the load capacity, the weight capacity of a hitch carrier refers to how much weight it can carry safely without breaking or bending. The most common weight range is 400 to 600 pounds. Some carry as low as 300 and others as high as 2700 pounds depending on the build. 

The weight of your motorcycle should guide you on the load capacity of the motorcycle bumper carrier that you should choose. If you have a lightweight dirt bike, a 400-capacity hitch carrier will be okay. It follows then that a heavier motorcycle will require a carrier with a higher capacity. 

Construction Material

Motorcycle hitch carriers use either aluminum or high-strength steel. Each material has advantages and shortcomings. Steel is more robust and carries more weight. However, it is heavier and more prone to rusting. 

Aluminum carriers are lightweight and thus easier to install. However, they carry less weight and are better suited for short-distance travel. 

Review of the Best Motorcycle Hitch Carriers

With so many options on the market, you may be spoilt for a choice when buying a hitch carrier. Our review features the best motorcycle hitch carriers that you can consider buying. Be sure to settle for your most favorite one out of our carefully considered list.

Best Overall:
TMS T-NS-MRC001

TMS T-NS-MRC001 500-Pound Heavy Duty Motorcycle Dirt Bike Scooter Carrier Hitch Rack Hauler Trailer with Loading Ramp and Anti-Tilt Locking Device

PROS

  • Suitable for four class receivers from Ⅱ to Ⅴ
  • Has an anti-tilt locking device that prevents wobbling, hence highly safe
  • Loading ramp is easy to carry as it attaches to the carrier after the loading process
  • Features a dual-sided loading ramp for more effortless bike loading and unloading
  • Powder-coated steel frame for resistance to scratching, chipping, fading, and wearing

CONS

  • Anti-rattle device proves hard to install 
  • Loading ramp is short, making loading harder

Specs

Brand: TMS

Material: Steel

Hitch Receiver Class: 2" square receiver Class Ⅱ, Ⅲ, Ⅳ, and Ⅴ

Loading Capacity: 500 Ibs

Review

Given that this TMS motorcycle hitch carrier is made of powder-coated, heavy-duty steel, you don't have to worry about rusting and corrosion. As such, it is suitable for use even in high humidity areas. 

The carrier comes with an interchangeable loading ramp that you can use for loading either on the right or left side. The ramp is easy to carry as you can attach it to the carrier after loading so you can use it later to unload your motorcycle. 

Bottom Line

With a loading capacity of 500 Ibs, this TMS motorcycle makes it possible to carry low and mid-weight bikes like dirt and motocross bikes. The anti-tilt locking mechanism comes in handy to support the bike and prevent fall accidents. 

The black color is a plus as it blends with most other colors, so the carrier weds well with any vehicle color and doesn't appear out of place.

Runner-up:
VersaHaul VH-SPORT

VersaHaul Dirt Bike Hitch Carrier With Ramp

PROS

  • Comes with a strong wheel stop to hold the front wheel in place
  • Powder-coat finish to enhance resistance to rusting and corrosion
  • Supports a loading capacity of 600 Ibs and hence carries heavy bikes as well
  • Has two reflectors that light up so the rear setup remains visible even at night
  • Features four retractable tie-down bars to ensure the bike stays securely in place

CONS

  • Might be a little hard to install on your own due to its high 78-pound weight

Specs

Brand: VersaHaul

Material: Steel

Hitch Receiver Class: Class Ⅲ and Ⅳ

Loading Capacity: 600 Ibs

Review

The Versa Haul VH-Sport hitch carrier comes with a Class Ⅲ hitch on the end of the carrier to ensure it stays firmly attached to the receiver. It is 77.5" inches long and thus suitable for long sports bikes. 

The rail measures 7.8" and is angled to support wide tires. This handy carrier rack also features reversible rails, an anti-tilt lock bracket, and four retractable tie-down bars for added safety when transporting your motorcycle or dirt bike

Bottom Line

Unlike most motorcycle hitch carriers, the VersaHaul VH-Sport bike carrier comes with two attached reflectors and a handy wheel stop. Although heavier than other models, the carrier will be convenient since it has a high carrying capacity of 600 Ibs.

Best for the Money:
Direct Aftermarket Motorcycle Carrier

Direct Aftermarket Steel Motorcycle Carrier 500 LB Scooter Dirt Bike Hauler Hitch Mount Rack Ramp Anti Tilt Anti Wobble

PROS

  • Easy to assemble as it has fewer detachable parts
  • Includes a loading ramp for easy loading and unloading
  • Long rack at 76" to accommodate long motorcycles
  • 500 Ibs capacity suitable for carrying dirt, street, and sports bikes
  • Comes with an anti-tilt locking device that prevents wobbling and tilting

CONS

  • Does not come with a hitch pin hence the risk of a poor fit on the receiver
  • Loading ramp may be a little short, making loading heavy bikes harder

Specs

Brand: Direct Aftermarket

Material: Steel

Hitch Receiver Class: 2" square receiver Class Ⅲ and Ⅳ

Loading Capacity: 500 Ibs

Review

At only 58 pounds, this Direct Aftermarket motorcycle hitch carrier is easy to install. It also comes with assembly instructions and hardware, which further makes assembly and mounting easier. 

The long rack is suitable for ferrying both short and long bikes. Its 500 Ibs loading capacity makes it ideal for carrying light dirt bikes and a heavy motorcycle or sports bike. The breaking point for this carrier is that it doesn't come with a hitch pin hence risks poor hitching. 

Bottom Line

If you find steel hitch carriers heavy and want a lighter one, this Direct Aftermarket carrier will be a good bet. It has a tubular design, making it possible to keep its weight down to only 58 Ibs. It's thus easy to lift for installation.

The ramp is versatile, and you can use it either on the right or left side as the need may be.

Best Trailer Hitch Motorcycle Carrier:
EGO BIKE MRC-001

EGO BIKE Steel Motorcycle Scooter Dirtbike Carrier Hauler Hitch Mount Rack Ramp Anti Tilt

PROS

  • Suitable for four classes from Ⅱ to Ⅴ
  • Wide 7-inch carrier to accommodate wide tires
  • Weighs only 50.7 Ibs and is thus easy to lift for installation
  • Multi-load capability with the ramp loading from either side of the carrier
  • Has an anti-tilt locking device to eliminate instances of tilts or wobbling

CONS

  • Does not include a trailer hitch pin

Specs

Brand: EGO BIKE

Material: Alloy Steel

Hitch Receiver Class: 2" square receiver Class Ⅱ, Ⅲ, Ⅳ, and Ⅴ

Loading Capacity: 500 Ibs

Review

The MRC-001 trailer hitch carrier is ideal for carrying your scooter, dirt, or motocross bikes. It has a loading capacity of 500 Ibs, making it suitable for both light and heavy motorcycles. 

If you are left-handed, the carrier is a plus. You can load your bike from either side of the rack using the multi-load, 38.5" ramp. There are only eight bolts and nuts, thus easy to assemble. 

Bottom Line

You will find the MRC-001 motorcycle hitch carrier easy to install. It has only eight nuts and bolts. It's also lightweight for a steel carrier. At only 50.7 Ibs, lifting it for mounting is easy. 

The carrier is also easy to use. The multi-loading ramp makes it easy to load your motorcycle from either side of the rack. Left-handed users will find the carrier quite easy and convenient to use for transporting their bikes.

Best Dual Motorcycle Hitch Carrier:
MotoGroup ST3402

Double Motorcycle or Dirt Bike Carrier 600 lb Capacity Aluminum 75' Track Length Each

PROS

  • Dual-capacity carrier for carrying two bikes at once
  • Generous two-year warranty from the date of purchase
  • Lightweight at only 70 Ibs for a double-capacity hitch carrier
  • Loading ramp serves both racks and is operable from either side
  • Three anti-wobble locking screws for more motorcycle stability
  • Made from aircraft-grade aluminum for a lightweight, rust-free carrier

CONS

  • Does not come with a trailer hitch pin
  • Limited loading capacity of 300 Ibs per rack

Specs

Brand: MotoGroup

Material: Aircraft-grade aluminum

Hitch Receiver Class: 2" Class Ⅱ, Ⅲ, Ⅳ, and Ⅴ

Loading Capacity: 600 Ibs

Review

MotoGroup ST3402 comes in handy if you need to transport two light bikes at a go. It's suitable for ferrying light dirt and motocross bikes. 

As a dual motorcycle hitch carrier, its loading ramp serves both racks and attaches conveniently onto the carrier for easy transportation. You can load your motorcycles either from the left or right as per your preference. 

Unlike most other hitch carriers that use two anti-wobble screws, MotoGroup's ST3402 carrier uses three to boost the stability and reduce instances of titling and wobbling. 

Bottom Line

If you are looking for a lightweight and sturdy dual motorcycle carrier, then the ST3402 model is your best bet. 

Despite being a double carrier with a steel sub-frame, the carrier is light at only 70 Ibs. The aluminum construction is rust-free, while the steel sub-frame adds to its sturdiness to ensure it doesn't bend or crush under the weight of two motorcycles.

Best Aluminium Motorcycle Hitch Carrier:
Black Widow AMC-400

Black Widow Hitch-Mounted Aluminum Motorcycle Carrier - 400 lb. Capacity

PROS

  • Long rack measuring 75" to accommodate long bikes
  • Easy to install due to its extreme lightweight of only 36 Ibs
  • Comes with a space bar adapter that fits youth 50-80cc bikes
  • Long ramp measuring 47" makes it easier to load your motorcycle
  • Self-restoring ramp with a roll-on/roll-off design for easy loading and unloading

CONS

  • Has some sharp edges that could easily hurt you
  • Bolts are not adequately strong, and the ramp may start wobbling after a few miles of driving

Specs

Brand: Black Widow

Material: Aluminum

Hitch Receiver Class: Class Ⅲ and Ⅳ

Loading Capacity: 400 Ibs

Review

The Black Widow AMC-400 appears a near-perfect aluminum hitch carrier were it not for the risky sharp edges and weak bolts. The bolts are short and weak and cannot hold the ramp in place over long distances without wobbling or rattling. You have to buy stronger ones. 

Despite its two shortcomings, the AMC-400 hitch carrier wins for its lightweight nature. The aluminum construction renders a rust-free and lightweight carrier that will last you a long time if used the right way. 

Bottom Line

Your search for a lightweight motorcycle hitch carrier with a self-restoring ramp ends today. The ramp has a roll-on/roll-off design that allows self-restoration. You can load your bike either from the left or right side.

With a loading capacity of 400 Ibs, you will be able to carry your light dirt bikes and motorcycles on your Class Ⅱ or Ⅳ-inch trailer hitch.

Best 600 Ibs Motorcycle Hitch Carrier:
Black Widow MCC-600

Black Widow MCC-600 Steel Motorcycle Carrier – 600 lb. Capacity

PROS

  • Made of strong alloy steel for a durable and robust hitch carrier
  • Has diamond treads on the ramp to make loading even easier
  • Extra-long loading ramp measuring 71" makes loading significantly easy
  • Comes with four integrated tie-down points for optimum stability during hauling
  • Features a wheel stop for the front tire for increased stability in the mounted position

CONS

  • Might require aftermarket nuts and bolts to avoid frequent loosening
  • Might be a little challenging to install on your own given the high 95 Ibs weight

Specs

Brand: Black Widow

Material: Alloy Steel

Hitch Receiver Class: 2" Class Ⅲ and Ⅳ

Loading Capacity: 600 Ibs

Review

The sturdy steel construction of the Black Widow MCC-600 hitch carrier makes it strong enough to accommodate 600 Ibs of motorcycle weight. The loading ramp is unique due to its extra length. At 71", it makes loading your bikes onto the rack a breeze. 

Although you might have to buy nuts and bolts because the stock ones come loose frequently, you will love the stability this motorcycle hitch carrier provides, thanks to the wheel stop that holds the front tire securely in place. 

Bottom Line

The Black Widow MCC-600 motorcycle hitch carrier will be a save if you are looking for a carrier with a wheel stop. The wheel chock is adjustable and will serve you well if you have to carry bikes with varying lengths

You will also love the super-long ramp that makes loading super easy!

Best Truck Hitch Motorcycle Carrier:
MotoGroup ST3401

Motorcycle Scooter Dirt Bike Carrier Hauler Rack Ramp - Closeout

PROS

  • Two-year warranty against factory defects
  • Uses three locking screws to prevent wobbling
  • Has a sturdy steel sub-frame for extra strength
  • Easy to install since it's lightweight at about 36 Ibs
  • Rust-free due to aircraft-grade aluminum construction

CONS

  • Does not include a trailer hitch pin

Specs

Brand: MotoGroup

Material: Aircraft-grade aluminum

Hitch Receiver Class: 2" square Class Ⅱ, Ⅲ, Ⅳ, and Ⅴ

Loading Capacity: 400 Ibs

Review

The MotoGroup ST3401 motorcycle hitch carrier is a safe bet if you carry lightweight bikes, given its 400 Ibs loading capacity. For a firm hold onto the carrier with no wobbling, there are three strong locking screws. Most other brands use only two. 

The carrier remains fairly lightweight at around 36 Ibs despite the inclusion of the steel sub-frame in its construction. As such, it is easy to lift during installation into the vehicle. 

Bottom Line

MotoGroup offers a generous two-year warranty on both the ST3401 and ST3402 models. You don't have to worry much about any factory defects that your hitch carrier might ship in with because you can return the carrier.

The ST3401 provides high bike stability given its strong triple-screw locking mechanism. The aluminum/steel combination ensures you get a highly rust-resistant carrier that will last you for a long time.

Pros and Cons of Using a Motorcycle Hitch Carrier

Like with any other product that we use to make our lives easier, motorcycle hitch carriers have their advantages and disadvantages. Let's discuss some of these below.

Pros of Using a Motorcycle Hitch Carrier

Zero Registration

Unlike using a hauler or trailer, you don't need registration from the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to use a motorcycle hitch carrier on your vehicle. As such, you save a lot of time that you would otherwise spend working on such registration. 

Safety, Efficiency, and Convenience

Motorcycle hitch carriers are safe transportation devices as they have several safety features like the wheel chock, tie-down straps, hitch pin, release locks, and anti-tilt locks. Safety features are critical as they ensure your bike doesn't fall off the carrier.

The convenience and efficiency of hitch carriers are associated with the ramp and that they mount close to the ground. You don't have to use too much effort to lift the motorcycle onto the carrier. The longer the ramp, the easier it is to load. 

Lower Transportation Costs

Generally, it's cheaper to buy and use a hitch carrier than other methods like trailers and haulers. Hitch carriers will provide the same service as these alternative options but at significantly lower costs. Hiring a hauler or trailer is expensive if you can't obtain yours. 

You also win on the fuel-saving front when you use a hitch carrier instead of towing your motorcycle using a trailer or hauler. 

Cons of Using a Motorcycle Hitch Carrier

Blocked Tail Lights or License Plate

On its own, the hitch carrier will not block your vehicle's tail lights or license plate. However, it is easy to partially or fully block them when you mount the bike on the carrier. As such, you may have to incur extra costs if the carrier doesn't have bonus reflectors. 

You may also fall into the law's hand if your taillights and license plate are blocked and invisible to other motorists. If your setup blocks the lights or plate and the carrier doesn't have the lights, consider buying and fitting light kits for your safety and the safety of other motorists. 

Photo credit: beecomunicacion.com

Rattling Noises

Your hitch carrier may be noisy during transportation if there are loose moving parts. At extremes, the loose parts may finally fall off, making your motorcycle fall off as well and suffer damage. 

You need to check what exact part is producing the noise. To solve the rattling problem, you can find a high-quality hitch pin to ensure that the carrier is tightly fixed. 

Types of Motorcycle Hitch Carriers

Motorcycle hitch carriers are classified based on the material used to make them. There are two types, as discussed below.

Aluminum Hitch Carriers

If you want a lightweight hitch carrier for your light motorcycle, an aluminum carrier will come in handy. The metal is light and will not add too much baggage to your vehicle. However, you have to carry less bike weight or otherwise risk breaking or bending the carrier. 

Aluminum carriers are suitable for use over short distances. You will find them easier to install on the vehicle because of their low weight. Besides regular cleaning, very little maintenance is required since aluminum is less prone to rust or corrosion.

Steel Hitch Carriers

A steel hitch carrier is more robust, heavier, and more expensive compared to an aluminum one. Steel is heavier and might be bulkier on your vehicle. To reduce the weight of the carrier, manufacturers make holes in non-essential parts along its body. 

Because of their weight, steel carriers are more difficult to install. You might need an extra hand. Maintaining them is also tricky, especially if they are poorly coated and begin to rust and corrode. 

If you are transporting a heavy bike or driving over a long distance, a steel hitch carrier will be your best bet. 

Photo credit: advrider.com

Steel vs Aluminum Motorcycle Hitch Carrier - Comparison Overview 

Similarities

Both steel and aluminum motorcycle hitch carriers are highly durable as they are resistant to rust and corrosion. When well finished with a high-quality powder coat, steel hitches do not rust or corrode easily. 

You don't have to worry about intensive maintenance with an aluminum one because the metal is even more rust and corrosion-resistant. 

Depending on the brand, both aluminum and steel hitch carriers will have common parts like the rack, ramp, and safety features such as the tie-down straps, wheel stop, hitch pin, and anti-tilt locks. 

Differences

Aluminum carriers are lighter than their steel counterparts because the former metal is lighter than the latter. As such, an aluminum carrier works best when you are carrying lightweight motorcycles, while a steel one is handy when your bike is heavy. 

Since they are more robust, steel carriers are suitable for transportation over long distances. The aluminum ones are ideal for shorter distances, especially on smooth driving surfaces where there is less risk of bending or breaking the carrier due to bumping impacts. 

Top Brands in the Motorcycle Hitch Carrier Space

One of the reasons it's tricky to decide on the best hitch motorcycle hauler is that there are so many brands in the industry. It becomes easy to be confused or overwhelmed when you are researching your next carrier purchase. Here are some top brands. 

VersaHaul

Based in Winamac, VersaHaul manufactures hauling solutions for motorcycles, dirt bikes, ATVs, and scooters. Most of its hitch carriers come with a ramp for ease of loading and unloading the bike. 

Some of the key features in VersaHaul carriers include adjustable wheel stops, attached reflectors, and optional tail light kits or license plate light.

Photo credit: tw200forum.com

Black Widow

Black Widow was established in 2003 and is part of the MOTIS Brands group. The company is based in Germantown, Wisconsin, but has a worldwide reach in the motorcycle industry. 

Other than hitch carriers, it also produces wheel chocks, ramps, and other accessories like bags, loop straps, and waterproof motorcycle covers. Most of its products have a one-year non-transferable warranty and a 30-day return window in case of defects. 

The company makes both steel and aluminum carriers with loading capacities of 400, 500, and 600 pounds for variety. The carriers have anti-rattle devices and self-storing ramps. 

Price Points of Motorcycle Hitch Carriers

It's impossible to rule out the price as a determining factor when you are out to buy a new hitch carrier. If you are on a tight budget, you will want to look for cheaper models. You can go for expensive models if you want extra features. Below are the typical carrier prices. 

$100 - $200

While you can get a motorcycle hitch carrier selling at less than $100, it's crucial to ensure that you are getting value for your money. One way to get a high-quality carrier is to invest more money. 

Within this price range, you can find both aluminum and steel carriers complete with a ramp, anti-tilt locking device, and a loading capacity of 400 or 500 pounds. 

Some of the brands with carriers in this category include Black Widow, Temecula Motorsports (TMS), EGO BIKE, and VersaHaul.

Photo credit: eatseerv.com

$200 - $500

Brands such as Black Widow, VersaHaul, MotoTote, Fast Master, Tilt-A-Rack, and MotoGroup, have hitch both aluminum and steel hitch carriers within this price range. 

Here, some of the key features may include double carrying capacity, foldability, three anti-wobble locking screws, and loading weights of 400, 500, and 600 pounds. 

$500 - $870

Motorcycle hitch carriers in this price range may have extra features like webbed tire tracks for more traction, dual carrying capacity, attached reflectors, and loading weights of 450, 550, and 600 pounds. 

Brands with models in this category include VersaHaul and MotoTote.

Who Should Not Buy a Motorcycle Hitch Carrier?

If you already have a trailer or hauler, you don't have to buy a motorcycle hitch carrier. A trailer or hauler will serve the same purpose of transporting your motorcycle, although at a relatively higher cost in fuel usage and initial purchase price. 

You may also have to forego a hitch carrier if you usually transport more than two bikes. For this purpose, a trailer or hauler will come in handy as it has multiple carrying capacity and a bigger loading capacity. 

Motorcycle enthusiasts who only have to transport their bike just a few times in a long while can make do without a dedicated hitch carrier. For irregular transportation needs, you can hire a trailer or hauler. However, this option may prove highly expensive in the long run. 

Photo credit: mtbr.com

Conclusion 

The best motorcycle hitch carrier is the one that best serves your transportation needs as promptly as they arise. If you can't count on your carrier to help you transport your motorcycle when the need arises, you must consider changing it. 

As we have seen, you should consider factors such as the hitch compatibility, multiple carrying capacity, weight capacity, and the body material of the hitch to ensure you pick the best for both your bike and vehicle. 

With or without the additional features like attached reflectors, tail lights, and license plate light, a hitch carrier should help you to securely and safely transport your bike. The choice then boils down to your personal preference, budget, and the exact need to be solved. 

People Also Ask

You might be worried about the legality, safety, and ease of use of a hitch carrier before you buy one. This section will explore some common questions people ask about hitch carriers. It will help strengthen your understanding and trust in a hitch carrier's capabilities. 

Are Motorcycle Hitch Carriers Safe?

Motorcycle hitch carriers are safe to use. They have safety features such as wheel stops, tie-down straps, hitch pins, and anti-tilt locking mechanisms that ensure the bike stays in place securely even during bumpy rides. 

As long as you observe the compatibility of the hitch carrier with the vehicle and the motorcycle in terms of weight limits, you will have no safety concerns to fear. Besides, it's easier to maneuver a vehicle with an attached hitch carrier than one with a trailer. 

Photo credit: ranger5g.com

How Do You Secure a Motorcycle to a Hitch Carrier?

With a ramp, it is easy to load your motorcycle onto the hitch carrier. You can use the cam buckle style or the ratchet style to hold down the bike. The following are the basic steps to follow:

  • Use the ramp to load the motorcycle onto the hitch carrier

  • Adjust the position of the wheel stop such that the front wheel of the bike rests against and can't be displaced during transportation

  • Choose your preferred straps and tie-down style 

  • Make soft loops on both handlebars and clamp the hooks in place on the sides of the hitch carrier and handlebars

  • Repeat the previous step on a strong part on the back of the bike

  • Pull-on the straps to tighten and ensure the bike is secure and in an upright position.

Are Motorcycle Hitch Carriers Hard to Install?

A motorcycle hitch carrier is easy to install once you have chosen the right one for your vehicle. Aluminum hitch carriers are easier to install because they are lighter, and you can lift them on your own. 

On the other hand, steel hitch carriers can be challenging to install because they are heavier. You might need an extra hand to lift the carrier and fix it onto the hitch receiver. The same case goes for most dual-capacity carriers due to the extra weight. 

Photo credit: blackwidowpro.com

How Much Weight Will a Motorcycle Receiver Hitch Carrier Carry?

As mentioned earlier in the article, motorcycle receiver hitch carriers have varying weight capacities. The weight capacity of the hitch receiver ranges between 300 and 2700 pounds depending on the type of vehicle you are using. 

The weight limit for the hitch carrier itself starts at 300 pounds and can be as high as 1000 pounds. Most carriers on the market carry 400, 500, and 600 pounds of motorcycle weight. 

Are Motorcycle Hitch Carriers Legal?

Motorcycle hitch carriers are perfectly legal in the country. The only time you would be on the wrong side of the law is when the carrier-bike setup obscures your vehicle's tail lights or license plate. 

To avoid bending the law, pick a carrier with attached reflectors, license plate lights, or make-up tail lights. You can buy a separate tail light kit if the carrier does not have the optional tail lights kit. 

Are Trailer Hitch Motorcycle Carriers Legal in California?

Trailer hitch motorcycle carriers are legal in California as long as you don't violate the state's strict towing laws, such as no weight limit excesses and no blockage of taillights and the rear license plate. 

How Many Motorcycles Can a Hitch Carrier Hold?

Most hitch carriers carry only one motorcycle at a time. However, there are double-capacity carriers that carry two bikes at a go. Your choice between the single and dual-capacity models depends on the number of bikes you have or expect to transport at once.



Hi, my name’s Troy. I started riding motorcycles with Clay mid-2020 and soaking up his vast knowledge of bikes. I have been writing for a few years and decided it was a good time to start writing about what I’m passionate about - motorcycles. No matter how bad your day is, a bike will always make you feel better, that’s my motto.