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I know the question of bike racks has been asked, but a search of the forum didnít really answer my question. Iím driving down from Boston to FL for a month and plan on taking my bike. Roof racks are clearly a bad idea and Iím not crazy about the hitch racks. Has anyone tried a trunk/hatchback bike carrier and also minimized the surface area of the bike by removing both wheels and collapsing the bike as much as possible? My goal is to reduce any overhang Ė that is, beyond the body of my 2005 Prius. I was thinking about shipping it down, but even if there was a 10% reduction in mpg, it would still only use an additional 2-3 gallons for the trip. Any thoughts or suggestions are appreciated.
The last thing i really want to do is cause friction amound hybrider's but i really have to say....is it really that big a deal to gain 1 or 2 mpg because of a bike? I know were trying to conserve and just by the fact we drive Hybrid's, proves this. I appologise if i misunderstood the question, but i wouldnt worry about it. Get your bikes there safe and dont worry about a few mpg for 1 trip. Once again i am sorry if i misunderstood the question. Have a good trip and be safe. Dean
I have a '04 HCH that I put a hitch rack on, I realize you said you didn't like them but I thought I would add what I could. I have had it on for about a month and in just local driving, with at most 2 bikes, my mileage does not seem to be hurt. With the Prius I would think since the car is larger than the Civic, then there would be less impact for you. You might want to look into a hitch rack since they are easier to take on and off and the hitch receiver has little impact on the car.
Personally I plan to get a hitch rack (once I buy a 2-inch hitch) because I don't want my paint scuffed and want easy plug-n-play capability, but to answer your question I have seen at least one Prius with a latch & strap type of bike rack, and surprisingly, it didn't look that bad and seemed to only make contact with the actual paint at the bottom of the hatch. Your bike would obscure most of your view out the back window, though.
I just wanted to give an update. I drove about 30 miles on the freeway this weekend with my bike. It seems like in town driving MPG is not affected by the bike, but when highway speeds are reached there is a big difference. I could tell when I got around 60 MPH it was like having a parachute behind the car. I am not sure how other racks work, but I just wanted to give my observations.