jansonholmwrote a review of Kuat NV Base 2.0 Bike Hitch Rack on October 11, 2018
I have been a loyal Yakima customer for 20 years. I have always gone first to Yakima before looking at other brands, and have used Yakima racks on 4 different vehicles. They have always worked well and have been of the highest quality. However, this rack was a complete let down.
I bought it about 2 years ago and loaded the rack with 4 bikes (it is rated for 5 bikes) for a Memorial Day trip. Everything was locked down and solid when we left. Half way from Portland, OR to Utah I noticed the bike rack was really loose in the hitch. I called Yakima and all they did was tell me to not travel using the rack because it wasnât safe. Last thing you want to hear in the middle of a trip youâve been planning and looking forward to. I found a great bike shop in Nampa, ID (Rolling H - I highly recommend them) who helped me get the hitch lock mechanism to tighten up better. Made it to Utah, was afraid to take it out of the hitch the whole time. Rode bikes a lot in UT and then headed home, rack rattling loose in the hitch the whole way. Once back in Portland, I called Yakima and asked for a refund. They wouldnât refund, but sent me a new tightening mechanism that I installed in the rack and it was just like new.
BTW, I consider myself very mechanically inclined and this was not a user error, I intimately understood the mechanism for tightening the rack in the hitch. I had studied it in detail on the side of the road trying to find a solution to save my trip. When I got the new mechanism, I had taken apart the old one completely to troubleshoot why it came loose. I could see where the steel teeth were stripped that made it come loose. I assumed that if I just tightened until it was barely snug then the teeth would stay strong. That worked for a couple local rides in Portland over the next year.
Fast forward to the next summer when I again loaded up 4 bikes for a long awaited family trip to NE Oregon and Hells Canyon. Rack locked into hitch solid when we left but by the time we arrived it was rattling loose again. That same tightening mechanism had loosened and the whole rack was rattling in the hitch. I was so mad it ruined the first day of the trip completely. Luckily, I had planned ahead and bought a âhitch titanâ that worked great as a patch job for the loose rack. Had a great time riding and the âhitch titanâ saved my bacon on that trip.
For the over $500.00 that I paid for this rack I expect a much higher level of quality and service from Yakima. I have since sold this rack and purchased a Kuat. KUAT IS THE BEST RACK I HAVE EVER OWNED HANDS DOWN. Yakima lost a 20 year loyal customer due to the poor quality and terrible customer service I experienced with this rack.
This rack is so solid. The hitch tightening mechanism is light years ahead of the Yakima version on the rack that this replaced for me. So easy to get bikes on and off this rack, and the bikes travelled so smoothly without rattling or swaying. If you care about your bike this rack will keep it secure and protected from both road vibration and thieves. I was a 20 year Yakima customer and became very disillusioned with the bad rack quality and poor customer service I experienced on my last Yakima rack. From the moment of opening the Kuat box, this rack has been a completely different experience. Very well engineered, quality is top notch. So happy I switched to this rack, is is worth every extra cent that it costs over the competition.