Reviewer – Neil Kerr
Platform racks have been taking the bike world by storm over the last couple of years, and we decided it was time we found out what all the fuss was about. We reached out to Kiwi company EziGrip to see if they had something for us to try, and it was as though they’d read our minds. Turns out since EziGrip changed ownership in 2015, they’d been working hard on a range of platform-style racks, which they see as the “way of the future”.
Their new Enduro 2 towball-mounted rack turned up a few days later and we entered the world of platform racks. My old classic spike-style rack was removed from the towball and replaced with the slimline platform of the Enduro 2 (“2” meaning two bikes). Fitting was a breeze, with a hand-tightened knob doing the bulk of the work in attaching the rack to the ball. This is backed up with a spanner-tightened locking bolt on the side to provide belt-and-braces-style safety backup. The hand knob is lockable for theft prevention and a rugged spanner is supplied in the box with the rack. I was impressed at the sturdiness and build quality of the rack, and the simple towball fitting system is a great bonus for Kiwis. The vast majority of Kiwi vehicles run with the classic towball, not the new trendy receiver tube-style fitting that other overseas rack companies build their designs around, and it’s always good to go with a New Zealand design.
The rack came equipped with a light and number plate board to keep you sweet with the local constabulary, but initially we decided not to fit it until we needed to go on a longer journey. Now with the rack built up, it was time to try our bikes on it. The first bike was a breeze: just set it on the tyre holders, adjust the middle arm to sit against the frame (yes, it has a rubber bumper to prevent any rubbing) and tighten up the three safety straps. Job done.
The second bike was again straightforward to mount. The only tricky thing when running two bikes is that you have to compromise a bit on the position of the cen-tre arm so it aligns with a good attachment point on both bikes. Not a major with most designs, but I could see a few with more unusual shock positions causing a headache. Perhaps for version 2.0, EziGrip could look at splitting the arm into two independent ones, which would solve things in a flash. While on ideas for the 2.0 model, I reckon a hinge system that allows the rack to be stored upright when not in use would be another improvement. When you’re driving around without any bikes on, the Enduro 2 adds about 50 centimetres of invisible length to your vehicle, which is a potentially expensive pitfall when parallel parking.
After only a few days, I was a total convert to the platform rack, and I loved the sim-plicity of the Enduro 2. It was so easy to use and removed the hassles of the dreaded frame rub on longer trips, especially with two bikes. The light board worked a treat anytime we were heading out of town, and I couldn’t fault the burly Kiwi design.
All in all, platform racks seem to be a more elegant solution to the whole bike transport thing, and with a Kiwi company making excellent value ones, why not jump aboard and add a little sophistication to your life?
For more info: www.ezigrip.co.nz