Review: Thule ProRide roof bike rack
reviewed 18 Aug 2023 by Phil Hall






Straightforward and quick to use

Compatible with a range of roof racks

Holds bikes up to 20kg

What is it?

The Thule ProRide is a roof-mounted bike rack designed to carry a single bike up to 20kgs - that should mean it's more than up to the job for most bikes with the exception of e-bikes, with most of them weighing over 20kg. 

The Thule ProRide is part of Thule's roof rack system, so it needs a roof rack to attach to. We mounted it to a WingBar Evo set (and mounting kit) to our long-term Suzuki Across which will set you back an additional £286. There are more affordable roof rack system out there from Thule, while the cost of the WingBar Evo set will vary slightly depending on what car you're mounting it to. Don't worry if you're unsure what mounting kit you need as the Thule website has a great compatibility checker where you can select you car and it will tell you what racks will fit and what mounting kit you'll need. 

The Thule ProRide is available in Black or Aluminium and Black, while there are a number of optional kits you can purchase the ProRide with, including a storage bundle if you're going to be keeping them off the car for long periods (as it does impact fuel economy slightly).

What's it like?

Thule's built up and enviable reputation in the world of roof racks and bike carriers, and the ProRide does nothing to dull that sentiment. 

First though, you need to attach the roof bars. Our Suzuki Across has flush rails and overall they were pretty easy to fit. The instructions perhaps feel a bit vague at times, but as they are trying to be as universal as possible, that's to be expected. All the fitting tools are included and once you've got the hang of one mounting point, the other three are pretty straightforward to do. Give yourself an hour or so and you should be all set, while there are locks for each mount point to safely secure your roof rack. Fitting the locks is a case of push and turn, all four using the same key.

Attaching the Thule ProRide couldn't have been simpler. Once you've slid some screws though the two base plates and threaded them on to the supplied clamps, it's a simple question of sliding it onto the WingBar Pro. Once you're happy with the position, you can then clamp it down and secure it in place - one of the clamps has a lock (with a key provided) so the ProRide can't simply be taken off the car when left unattended. 

With the ProRide slotted into the WingBar Pro and that attached to the car, the fitting was rock-solid, with absolutely no flex or movement, giving us confidence to attach a bike.

The two base plates of the ProRide can be easily adjusted when on the WingBar Pro to fit different bike wheelbases and you can roughly do this before lifting the bike in place. Make sure the wheel straps are out of the way, while you'll also want to angle the frame clamp upwards at around 30 degrees and have the jaw extended as much as possible. You can then lift the bike up and onto the ProRide.

For the test we used a lightweight carbon road bike and despite the height of the Across, it's possible to lift into position singlehandedly, though if you're attaching a heavier mountain bike for example, you might need an extra pair of hands depending on the height of your car. 

With the bike up, you can tighten the jaws of the clamp. There's a torque limiter and the large pads spread the pressure, minimising the risk of damaging your bike frame. There's a lock as well, using the same key that locks it in place to the roof rack, while the wheel straps are easily tightened. The result is a bike firmly in place. 

With the bike mounted on the Thule ProRide in place and at low speeds you don't notice you've got a bike mounted just above your head. At higher speeds wind noise is a bit more noticeable, but it's not excessive. 

Should I buy one?  

Rather than trying to stuff your bike in the boot of a car, which normally means dropping the wheels out, a roof bike rack is a neat solution and the Thule ProRide is one of the best around.

Easy to fit and use, the quality is very good. At £150 from Thule (though you'll find it from places like Amazon for £115), it looks good value in isolation. However, you also need to factor in the cost of the roof rack system itself, while if you're planning to carry more than one bike, you'll need to invest in additional bike racks. Depending on the type of bikes you're riding, you should be able to get up to four bikes on a WingBar Pro. That should still make it more affordable than a towbar bike rack (which can only take a maximum of three bikes), though a bigger investment than a rear mounted hanging rack. 

The only thing to be aware of is height restrictions - you soon forget you've got bikes on the car and you don't want to ruin a trip with the sound of cracked carbon and you drive into a height-restricted car park. 

Buy it now

Thule Unisex Adult 598 Pro Ride Aluminium Locking Upright Cycle Carrier - Silver/Black, N/A

Pros Easy to fit onto a Thule roof rack Bike is nice and secure Well made and lockable
Cons Gets pricey if carrying more than one bike You'll need to invest in a roof rack system first Does impact fuel economy slightly


Load capacity: 20kg

Max wheelbase: 1235mm

Dimensions: 145 x 32 x 8.5cm

Weight: 4.2kg

Fits round frame dimensions: 22-80mm

Max tyre width: 3-inches

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