Best Hitch Mounted Cargo Carriers
Owning a four-wheeled vehicle with a flat compact rear (hatchback or SUV) can be disadvantageous in its own way. You will be having trouble transporting anything that is too big and too heavy to store in a trunk.
Cross-country camping is almost never a light-travel holiday in terms of the things you need to bring with you. Imagine if you bring four companions to a 4-day backwoods adventure. Each one will be bringing with them an inventory that weighs a maximum of 25% of their body weight.
Alternatively, you could be moving to a new home but you don’t want to spend money on the removal staff. If you don’t own a truck, how would you ferry your lawnmower or fridge? In cases like these, you need to have a hitch mounted cargo carrier installed at the back of your car.
The Selection Criteria
Unlike a roof rack, this additional cargo carrier is arguably more secure and easy to take apart during state-line security checks. When choosing a hitch mounted cargo carrier, there are certain consistent aspects you should consider. These are the following:
- Weight Capacity
- Space & Security
- Retail Cost
Apart from the balance of these three qualities, you always have to consider whether a single product item has additional accessories. These pieces of equipment can give hitch mounted cargo carriers a better performance and safer driving experience. Unfortunately, not every product is sold with all of these features included:
- Hitch locks
- Cargo bags
Every hitch mounted cargo carrier has a certain weight capacity and dimension. But its value is also best seen in the way a model is built differently. Take note of the following aspects that provide you with clearer options than numbers.
A cargo carrier can either be made of steel, aluminum or polypropylene. Steel is often regarded for its strength and durability. Aluminum, on the other hand, is esteemed for its resistance to corrosion. The complex plastic polypropylene is designed for lightweight application and removing the friction-based constraints of metallic counterparts.
A hitch mounted cargo carrier can create additional space for the vehicle. But if you are not using it to tow anything, it simply looks like a platform sticking out at the back of your car. Choosing whether or not to buy a foldable variety depends on how much the awkwardness and parking challenges bother you.
You can choose whether your cargo carrier’s surface is solid or meshed. A solid surface provides better protection from fragments (e.g. dust or mud) pelted by the grinding wheels. A meshed surface provides better security, allowing you to multiple accesses for hooking up your straps while letting residue (e.g. rain or water container leaks) fall through the hollows of the platform.
A hitch mounted cargo carrier can either have lip edges or rails. Just like an upper floor building, rails provide a deterrent for objects (especially people) from falling off the edge. Without straps, this measure of security is directly equivalent to the height and structure of the retaining sides.
The 5 Best Cargo Carriers
Considering the two major aspects and their components, you are now able to precisely determine what type of model you want. But just for the sake of convenient reference, here are the following examples you may be looking for:
1. Five Star 436 ACC-TG
The high-grade aluminum material enables this product to better withstand both physical and elemental damages.
Despite having a meshed surface, four 1-inch-wide tubes underneath the bottom web keeps its cumbersome cargo from collapsing. Unfortunately, it can only carry a maximum weight capacity of 300 lbs. If you think weight capacity is a top consideration, then you’ll find the retail price too steep for a worthy investment.
2. Pro Series 63153
- Item Weight: 59.3 lbs
- Dimensions: 60 x 24 x 5
If you want a model with a fairly impressive design, this hitch mounted cargo carrier may be right for you. Among the most notable features of a Pro Series 63153 is its rise shank. You won’t have to get in trouble with the traffic police for unintentionally concealing the license plate.
Speaking of traffic security, this product also has a compatible LED kit option that reflects and magnifies tail lights. Unfortunately, this item seemed too bulky by comparison. This cargo carrier has an impressive weight capacity of 500 lbs.
3. ROLA 59502
- Item Weight: 73.2 lbs
- Dimensions: 56 x 23 x 5.25
Just like the previously mentioned Pro Series, this model also sports a rise shank that hoists the cargo carrier clear off the exhaust outlets. Made from quality steel, this product is comparatively less expensive. Unfortunately, the item is one of the heaviest varieties in the market.
Despite its weight, you’ll find this product relatively easier to set up. Curiously, this model allows you to relocate your license plate to the cargo carrier. You won’t be thinking of being pulled over by traffic enforcers in broad daylight for violating this particular edict.
4. Rage Powersports CCB-F6020-DLX
Another encouraging quality about this product is that manufacturers offer a very generous guarantee. You can still return the item within 30 days for a refund. Apart from the usual missing hitch pin, this cargo carrier has an unfortunate tendency to bend under the weight (as if its lower elevation is not bad enough).
5. TMS 92655
- Item Weight: 20 lbs
- Dimensions: 49 x 22.5 x 8
For an aluminum hitch cargo carrier with a 500-lb weight capacity, this item has a very handy weight. You can choose to own the alternative variety that features a weight capacity of 300 lbs. It only comes down to what class hitch suits your vehicle the most
The TMS 92655 sports a durable 8-inch high rail, securing the cargo without the great need for straps or netting. It only costs a fraction compared to other models. Unfortunately, the gaps in the grid surface are huge enough for an entire leg to pass through.