Inno Tire Hold Review
Cons: Cheap feeling, durability concerns, a little expensive
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Our Analysis and Test Results
Analysis and Test Results
The Tire Hold is a solid bike rack. It takes a somewhat unique approach in the way it holds a bike. This tire holding method is secure, and there is no frame or fork contact. It is a great platform to build off of. This rack scored well in ease of use, versatility, and ease of assembly. Durability was one area that could use improvement. It has a plastic feel, and a lot of the linkages connecting the elements of this rack feel flimsy and use thin metal links. Still, this rack was a noble performer and could be worth consideration.
Ease of Everyday Use
The Tire Hold is an easy-to-use rack. The design might take a little getting used to if you are familiar with popular hitch racks from the big industry players. While most racks grab the front wheel near the fork and pulls the wheel down into a cradle, the Tire Hold has arms that squeeze the wheels inward. There is no frame or fork contact and the hold is strong.
To load the rack, simply push the silver button to open up the arms. The longer the bike, the wider you will need to open the arms. Place the bike on the tray. While holding the bike with one hand, close the arm on the rear wheel. There is no need to over-torque the arm. Just get it snug. Next, close the arm on the front wheel. That's it—no need to mess with straps or ratchets. If you are loading a second bike, you need to flip the bike to face the opposite direction as the first. If there is handlebar/saddle interference, you can lower the dropper posts if applicable. If not, you can slide the outer bike forward or backward on the rack and retighten the arms. To unload the bikes, simply work backward.
We loved the tilting mechanism on this rack. There are four positions. Fully folded for driving around without bikes, the ¼ tilt position was nice. This allows you to access the hatch on a wagon or crossover without tilting the rack all the way down. It would not be unheard of to drive around like this. The next position is the loading, flat position. If you have bikes on the rack and need to get to the trunk/hatch, you can also tilt it all the way down, which gives you plenty of room to get to your vehicle. A handle engages the tilt mechanism at the end of the rack. It is a great location, and it has a very light action. It doesn't take much strength to engage the tilt.
Ease of Removal and Storage
The Tire Hold posted a solid score in the ease of storage metric.
Removing the rack from your vehicle is relatively simple. Use the key to unlock the knob that loosens and tightens the expander. Turn the knob left until it loosens the rack. Then, pull the spring-loaded pin out, and you are ready to rip. You don't need to remove the anti-rattle plate, but it might be smart to loosen it. That will save you a step when reinstalling the rack. Our test rack weighs 62.9-pounds. It isn't that light, but it is not terrible to carry.
Storing the rack is a little more challenging. This is a big piece of gear, and it will occupy a lot of space. No matter how dialed your garage or shed is, there isn't a great way to store the rack. It can't be stood up in the corner of a shed. It will need to just sit flat on the ground.
Versatility was another strong point of the Tire Hold rack. We tried this bike with a variety of bikes from extra large mountain bikes, to road bikes, to fat bikes. All bikes play nicely, although our fat bike with 4.8-inch tires was a tight squeeze.
In addition to the fact that this rack accepts a wide variety of bikes, it also should work on most vehicles. It fits 1.25-inch and 2-inch hitch receivers. We may caution riders with particularly low vehicles against tray-style racks. The ground clearance can be a real issue, especially entering and exiting parking lots with quick angle changes in the pavement. All other vehicles should work swimmingly. Vans, SUVs, wagons, and trucks should all play nicely.
Ease of Assembly
The Tire Hold was quite easy to assemble. Upon unboxing the rack, the process looks a little daunting. Within the main box, there is the main mast and five smaller boxes. Four of those boxes hold the components that form the two trays. The fifth contains some hardware.
Luckily, Inno did a great job labeling the boxes. The components of the trays are very easy to identify. Assembling the trays is simple, and each tray is secured by a mounting plate and five Allen screws. Simple as that. Actually installing the rack into your hitch is simple. After the first installation, the order of operations is quite clear.
The Tire Hold comes with a security cable. The cable can be fed through the bikes and locked to the knob that tightens the rack's expander wedge. In other words, the lock that secures the system to your vehicle also doubles as the lock that secures the included cable.
This system works fine. It is a little clunky to get down on your knees or hunch over to use the lock on the expander knob, but it works. It is better than not having a security feature, but this could be improved. While we appreciated the addition of the cable for its theft deterrence, we would probably add a beefier aftermarket lock to the equation for additional peace of mind.
Durability is one area we are concerned about. It should be clear that we used this rack for about three weeks and loaded it about 100 times. We did not experience any significant wear or deterioration through this time period.
We are slightly concerned about the longevity of the Inno rack. Upon a visual examination of the rack, it isn't constructed with the beefiest pivots or linkages. Where the arms connect to the main trays, the linkage is made of thin aluminum pieces. We would really have liked to see something meatier that would inspire more confidence in this unit's longevity. These parts will see a lot of movement, road salt, and bouncing around, why not beef them up?
At $550, this rack isn't exactly cheap. That said, it is a functional rack that does certain things exceptionally well. If you are lugging around fat bikes and electric bikes, this rack can be a great value as not every rack can handle that load. We feel this rack is a decent value for the right buyer, we just hope it stands up to the test of time.
The Inno Tire Hold is a functional and refreshing bike rack. It is nice to see a company taking a slightly different approach as opposed to simply imitating some of the top options on the market. The result is an easy-to-use and versatile bike rack at a decent price. We feel there are areas that Inno could beef up and refine, but this is a good bike rack that might be worth considering.
— Pat Donahue