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There's no way in hell that's a true Class 3 hitch! The first clue is only a supported weight of 130 lbs. Why bother at that point? Get the standard hitch for peace of mind.
What gives you that idea? It's rated for 500lbs tongue weight at the ball. Physics limits it's fulcrum at 130lbs when extending a few feet from it. Most other hitches (unless engineered for it) will have comparable limitations on the amount of torque they can sustain at distance from the receiver. It's also why they don't make 3ft long tow bars with tow ball on the end. It would dramatically drop the allowable tongue weight. The mechanics chapter of any physics text can help you with the details of leverage and torque on a fulcrum.
 

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Next time you have your bikes loaded on top, please take a picture and post.
Hi - sorry it took so long - had only been carrying one or two bikes for kids. Today 3 but figured I'd throw a 4th for demo. We can easily carry any combination of our bikes (at last count we have 22 bikes of various sizes and types - 8 CX, 9 MTB, 1 road, etc). On one trip we had 6 bikes on it, but that's when we still had the old Volvo tow bar with Thule XT Pro on the back carrying 4 and 2 on the top. I guess if we get a tray for 2 bikes we could do that in reverse but I don't see the need to get another tray carrier. We have lots of options to carry bikes. When camping with our trailer we can carry 6 bikes on the R-Pod and 4 more on our 2017. If we tow with our 2010 we could carry 2 more on top of it with it's roof basket.

Here you:



 

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The Foldable Hitch has a tongue weight of 500 lbs. Its the Volvo bicycle hitch which is limited to 130 lbs (probably how it is designed). Volvo clarified this on their website.

It is really hard to imagine that 4 bikes plus a rack will put 500 lbs on the tongue. I'm not an engineer, the way I calculate this is: 100 lbs (bike carrier) + 120 lbs (4 heavy bikes) = 220 lbs

This website says to compensate for a cantilevered bike rack by using only 2/3s of the 500 lbs or 333 lbs. http://www.hitchrider.com/hitch.htm Lots of websites do not even mention calculating for leverage as hitch specs are way lower than full capacity as mandated by some governmental body. It seems that 4 bikes are well within specs. This hitch is well made.



see: https://accessories.volvocars.com/en-ca/XC90(16-)/Accessories/Document/VCC-516542/2020
 

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The ARM from the vehicle’s center of gravity is critical. The longer the ARM, the less weight required to move the vehicle outside of its safe operating limits.

Think about a baggage compartment in the rear of an aircraft. It is does not take much weight at the farthest permitted ARM to exceed the safety envelope.

If the Total moment has a far rear center of gravity beyond the limits, your steering and controllability will be adversely affected.

FWIW, Pilots have to / supposed to compute the center of gravity for every flight based on 3-axis - lateral, longitudinal and vertical/yaw. Safety of flight depends on it.

Drivers of cars only have two-axis but drivers should still be very mindful when loading it, especially from the rear and top.

All the best from Minnesota USA,
A fine MY16 XC90 T8
 

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The Foldable Hitch has a tongue weight of 500 lbs. Its the Volvo bicycle hitch which is limited to 130 lbs (probably how it is designed). Volvo clarified this on their website.

It is really hard to imagine that 4 bikes plus a rack will put 500 lbs on the tongue. I'm not an engineer, the way I calculate this is: 100 lbs (bike carrier) + 120 lbs (4 heavy bikes) = 220 lbs

This website says to compensate for a cantilevered bike rack by using only 2/3s of the 500 lbs or 333 lbs. http://www.hitchrider.com/hitch.htm Lots of websites do not even mention calculating for leverage as hitch specs are way lower than full capacity as mandated by some governmental body. It seems that 4 bikes are well within specs. This hitch is well made.



see: https://accessories.volvocars.com/en-ca/XC90(16-)/Accessories/Document/VCC-516542/2020
I tried to explain this earlier, and apparently wasn’t clear.

You don’t want to do what you did, it won’t lead to the correct answer. The Volvo rule of thumb is probably fine, but I don’t care much for rules of thumb. For anybody who thinks they have a situation that is close to the limit of the specification, here is what you can do:

This hitch rotates into place, and locks. As such, all that matters is the amount of applied torque at the point of rotation; too much torque and the lock breaks down. In the end it is torque, and not linear force, that matters.

The calculation of allowable torque, given the Volvo 500 lb spec limit at the hitch ball, is made by multiplying the applied force at the ball and the distance of the ball from the point of rotation.

Volvo is probably assuming that most owners will be hauling a trailer, using a ball. Tongue/ball arrangements will probably place the ball about one foot from the point of rotation, depending on the length of the tongue that goes into the receiver. So, the Volvo spec is actually based on an allowable torque at the point of rotation of roughly 500 ft-lb (in British engineering units, if you are metric this converts to about 675 Nm.)

Now, you can load whatever you want onto this hitch, so long as the applied torque doesn’t exceed 500 ft-lb. If you are using a bike rack you will probably have a straight shaft/tongue that goes into the receiver.

You can make a simple calculation, to see where you are re. applied torque. What you do is to take the weight of the bike rack that you want to use, and measure the distance from, roughly, the edge of the back bumper to the center point of the weight of the rack. Let’s say that the rack weighs 75 lb and its weight is centered about 2 ft from the bumper. This creates an applied torque of 150 ft-lb at the point of rotation.

Now, you need to add include the torque due to the weight of each of the bicycles and whatever other stuff you hang out there. Let’s say that you have four bicycles, and each bicycle weighs about 30 lb, and they will be located at 1, 2, 3, 4 feet from the bumper. You do the arithmetic and get 30, 60, 90 and 120 ft- lb, respectively. Now you add everything up, 150+30+60+90+120, and you get a total applied torque of 450 ft-lb. Very simple!

You know that Volvo has included a factor of safety in their spec, probably at least a factor of two, so you have no problem at all at 450 ft-lb. As I indicated previously, I have loaded this hitch to 400 ft-lb, traveled long distances, hit many bumps and chuckholes, and had no problem whatsoever.

You say you are not an engineer. I have a couple of degrees in mechanical engineering. The simple calculation I have illustrated above will get you to a safe operating situation.
 

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Nice simple calculation. Thank you! Was thinking about getting a hitch for the xc90 as the Jeep Grand cherokee is getting old. Have a hangover rack that is 80lbs so your calculation really helps!

But I agree that this 2 bike limit is really stupid for a "family" SUV.
 

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Do you have a Thule hanging bike carrier or a tray style? The tray style I'd say are a definite no way. We have a Thule T2 Pro with extension for 4 bikes that would definitely be a no on the new foldable hitch. We use it on our 2010 XC90 and I used to use it on our 2017 when I had the old style Volvo hitch (the one that offended most on this forum because of the visible cutout - I liked it). Anyway, the T2 Pro and T2 Classic models I'd advise against it since they are really long (T2 Pro is 5.5 feet long and weighs over 100lbs and by itself nearly exceeds the combined 130lbs bike and carrier limit of the new hitch. The issue you have to contend with is because it's foldable, the fulcrum has a rated limit and when you throw weight at more than 5 feet from the fulcrum it's amplified. Odds are a hanging style carrier may not be as much of a stress on the fulcrum. You'd have to do some maths to figure that out.
I have the Thule Apex XT 4 bike rack, which itself weighs 35 pounds. This is not a tray style, but hanging.

If I load up four bikes at 25 pounds each, I am below 150 pounds. I'd of course load adult bikes closest to the car and teen bikes farther out. But, why can't the hitch hold four bikes that in all total less than 150 pounds?

if the hitch is rated for 150 pounds, why would Volvo put on a two bike limit?
 

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I tried to explain this earlier, and apparently wasn’t clear.

You don’t want to do what you did, it won’t lead to the correct answer. The Volvo rule of thumb is probably fine, but I don’t care much for rules of thumb. For anybody who thinks they have a situation that is close to the limit of the specification, here is what you can do:

This hitch rotates into place, and locks. As such, all that matters is the amount of applied torque at the point of rotation; too much torque and the lock breaks down. In the end it is torque, and not linear force, that matters.

The calculation of allowable torque, given the Volvo 500 lb spec limit at the hitch ball, is made by multiplying the applied force at the ball and the distance of the ball from the point of rotation.

Volvo is probably assuming that most owners will be hauling a trailer, using a ball. Tongue/ball arrangements will probably place the ball about one foot from the point of rotation, depending on the length of the tongue that goes into the receiver. So, the Volvo spec is actually based on an allowable torque at the point of rotation of roughly 500 ft-lb (in British engineering units, if you are metric this converts to about 675 Nm.)

Now, you can load whatever you want onto this hitch, so long as the applied torque doesn’t exceed 500 ft-lb. If you are using a bike rack you will probably have a straight shaft/tongue that goes into the receiver.

You can make a simple calculation, to see where you are re. applied torque. What you do is to take the weight of the bike rack that you want to use, and measure the distance from, roughly, the edge of the back bumper to the center point of the weight of the rack. Let’s say that the rack weighs 75 lb and its weight is centered about 2 ft from the bumper. This creates an applied torque of 150 ft-lb at the point of rotation.

Now, you need to add include the torque due to the weight of each of the bicycles and whatever other stuff you hang out there. Let’s say that you have four bicycles, and each bicycle weighs about 30 lb, and they will be located at 1, 2, 3, 4 feet from the bumper. You do the arithmetic and get 30, 60, 90 and 120 ft- lb, respectively. Now you add everything up, 150+30+60+90+120, and you get a total applied torque of 450 ft-lb. Very simple!

You know that Volvo has included a factor of safety in their spec, probably at least a factor of two, so you have no problem at all at 450 ft-lb. As I indicated previously, I have loaded this hitch to 400 ft-lb, traveled long distances, hit many bumps and chuckholes, and had no problem whatsoever.

You say you are not an engineer. I have a couple of degrees in mechanical engineering. The simple calculation I have illustrated above will get you to a safe operating situation.
Thanks for the simple maths. People don't seem to realize that the further away the bike is from the hitch, the more the force is applied to said hitch. This is the biggest reason to go with the Stealth Hitch over the folding hitch.
 

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Folder Trailer Hitch and Storage Box

Question, did you use the storage box with thew Volvo "foldable trailer hitch?" Thank you.

That’s pretty heavy.

People who have a concern will have to measure and weigh their own situations. I have direct experience with 400 ft-lb of torque working without problems, so this might be a point of reference.

I just completed a 1900 mile cross country trip with this box on our xc90. I didn’t have this box heavily loaded, but I’m guessing that it was also at about 400 ft-lb, and not more. No problems, and we hit some pretty good size bumps. It’s the impulse from things like bumps, and not static measurements per se, that will determine performance limits in the end.

https://www.stowaway2.com/max-cargo-carrier-black

We travel paved roads only, and I’m confident in my situation. Maybe Volvo is concerned that people with large bicycle racks are more likely going off road. I hadn’t thought about that. Off road jarring might be the limiting consideration...?
 

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I have the retractable towbar installed on my car and use the Volvo branded Thule 4 bike carrier with no issues. Just drove more than 3,000 miles across Europe with all 4 bikes on the carrier and never had any problems. The only downside of using a towbar bike carrier is that the Pilot Assist function is disabled as the rear sensors are obstructed by it.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
I used the foldable hitch and carried four bikes on a 800 mile trip. No issues. With three boys, we need a box on the roof as well as a carrier.
 

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Another folding hitch question

Hi All

I just had the folding hitch installed on my 2020 xc90. The positioning of the hitch seems to be off when its deployed in the “towing” position. My dealer tells me that this is normal, but it just looks so awful, that i can’t imagine the part was engineered to fit this way.

Any of you experience the same phenemonenon?

Here’s a link to a pic of my bike rack installed, which shows the mis alignment.

https://share.icloud.com/photos/0ZKZA_zuWkWa68gpiGhSKKknQ
 

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Discussion Starter #33
Since I posted this, I received few PMs from drivers wondering if their hitch was installed incorrectly since the bike carrier is tilting counter-clockwise and sagging backwards as well. One of the users actually took it back to the shop but the results was still the same. I took a couple of close up shots of the hitch and uploaded them here https://imgur.com/a/DtZJ67H

You can see a slight tilt in mine as well, but it is not as emphasized as what others see. I would see mine is about 3-5 degrees CCW. Others estimated theirs at 10-15 degrees. Maybe others are also seeing this issue?
 

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For what's it's worth, I just talked to a service tech at my dealer and he said 4-bike racks are totally fine, the specification is only for Volvo's rack, and people have this question all the time. So presumably he's told many people this and not had a hitch break off yet...
 

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Since I posted this, I received few PMs from drivers wondering if their hitch was installed incorrectly since the bike carrier is tilting counter-clockwise and sagging backwards as well. One of the users actually took it back to the shop but the results was still the same. I took a couple of close up shots of the hitch and uploaded them here https://imgur.com/a/DtZJ67H

You can see a slight tilt in mine as well, but it is not as emphasized as what others see. I would see mine is about 3-5 degrees CCW. Others estimated theirs at 10-15 degrees. Maybe others are also seeing this issue?
My bike carrier is also tilting counter-clockwise by about 10 degrees when inserted in the retractable hitch. I am quite sure it is from the hitch not being leveled. By the way, this is hard to see if there is a tilt without actually installing a bike carrier. I contacted the dealer and they told me that there is no adjustment that can be done on the hitch. Did anyone find a solution to this problem?
 

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That 10 degree tilt would absolutely piss me off. All these issues I'm reading and the 120 lb 2 bike limit for this "new hitch" makes me soooo happy I have the "old style" hitch! It's ugly, but at least it's even and practical!

20190629_130742.jpg

20200704_070606.jpg

20200704_080629.jpg
 

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For what's it's worth, I just talked to a service tech at my dealer and he said 4-bike racks are totally fine, the specification is only for Volvo's rack, and people have this question all the time. So presumably he's told many people this and not had a hitch break off yet...
MY dealer service manager said the same thing that he has the volvo tow hitch and uses a 4 bike platform carrier. However, I ordered the stealth hitch anyway.
 

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Could you let me know the distance from the ground to the BOTTOM of the receiver tube on the XC90 OEM/factory drop-down hitch when in the down position for use? And if you have the regular or air suspension option? Trying to determine clearance issue on a fairly steep driveway ramp.




Hi All

I just had the folding hitch installed on my 2020 xc90. The positioning of the hitch seems to be off when its deployed in the “towing” position. My dealer tells me that this is normal, but it just looks so awful, that i can’t imagine the part was engineered to fit this way.

Any of you experience the same phenemonenon?

Here’s a link to a pic of my bike rack installed, which shows the mis alignment.

https://share.icloud.com/photos/0ZKZA_zuWkWa68gpiGhSKKknQ
 
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