The Yakima box arrived, it took me about 20 minutes to put together the Yakima Holdup. You do it right on the car so it's fairly simple...almost anyone can do it. Then I put 2 bikes straight on the car and drove 1,000 miles over the next 5 days taking the bikes on and off for rides. I was daring, I didn't even read the instructions.
Hitch bike racks have cured me forever of using bikes racks on the roof. They are so much easier to use, it's not even a fair comparison. This rack takes about 5 minutes to take off or put on the car, just push it in, tighten the bolt, snap on the cotter pin and lock it. This is assuming that your car already has either a 1 1/4 or 2 inch hitch already installed. If not, it will cost you a few hundred bucks to get one. The Holdup rack is quite heavy though, so some people may need help getting it in place.
The Holdup is very simple to use. It takes less than a minute to load each bike on the rack securely and lock it in place with the integrated cable bike lock. The lock and cable combination isn't enough to allow you to leave the bikes on the car in the hotel parking lot at night, but they are enough for quick runs into the grocery store or beer store. The rack also includes a lock for the pin that holds the entire rack on the car and that is a nice feature too.
I say "beer store" because the Holdup also has a built in beer bottle opener. Some may use it to open soda pop, but I used mine only for beer.
As with most hitch racks this style, the Holdup folds up when not in use. The arm on this model is long enough that when I folded it up, it actually cleared the spare tire on the back of my Isuzu Trooper. Some other brands I've used do not clear the tire.
The rack also drops down so you can open the back hatch with the rack on. Whether or not this works depends on what type of car you use it with. My Trooper has a swing out door that does not clear the rack, so I could only open the door a foot or so. This is not so good on a road trip. If my car had a door that swung up, it would be great. On Yakima's website, they do offer a page to help you figure out if the rack will work well on your car or not.
One of the best new things on the Holdup is that you can slide the bike carrier bars back and forth to adjust their position in relation to each other. What this means is that you can avoid the problem of a handlebar hitting the seat of the other bike. You won't have to drop the seat on either bike anymore.
The rack doesn't touch any part of the frame either, so won't scratch fancy paint jobs or freak out carbon fiber riders.
Like the heft of the rack itself, the price is a solid $439. Not inexpensive, but it's got a lifetime warranty and should last for years. If you want to carry 4 bikes, you can purchase the Holdup Plus 2 for $329 which bolts into the Holdup and includes 2 more bike carriers.
Most bike racks of this style are easy to get bikes on and off in a flash. What sets the Holdup apart is that it comes standard with built in cable and hitch locks, it can be adjusted horizontally, and it's fairly compact. See the Yakima Holdup here - Click!
Tested by Nathan Ward