The Saris Thelma II is a great bike rack. I had a Yakima bike rack that was a hitch mount rack that could hold 4 bikes by the frames. The problem was, the only bike that I could put on their easily was the road bike. The Mt bikes were so hard because of the frames. I have for the last couple of years been looking for a bike rack that holds the bikes by the wheels, that was not so highly priced. The Yakima and Thule Racks were about $350.00 Compared to the Saris Thelma II at $249.00. I bought mine at Bike Habitat in Carson City.
My first impression was that it may be a little weak. The assembly of the product was quite simple and only took about 20 minutes. At first glance the wheel holders looked like they would break really easy. But on closer inspection, I could see that the tray that holds the front wheel was re-enforced with steel or aluminum. The straps on the Saris are not that user friendly. They do secure the bike properly but in my opinion they could have been a little longer. It would make it easier to strap the bike in.
Other than the straps I am really happy with the rack. It is very easy to deploy and to stow. You just take out one large pin and then swing the rack up for stowing. At first it took about a minute to load the bikes. Now it takes about 20 seconds. It seems like the bike would wobble a lot back there but it does not at all when you are driving. It is really solid.
The best part about it is that when you look in your rear view mirror you can see your bike. That always makes me smile! So on a recent trip to Sacramento, while on the freeway, I realized I missed my exit, I looked in the rear view. Dang there is the exit, but look at that BIKE! What a sweet shock mount pivot point! Yeah! And then I thought there was a cop behind me. Nope! Just a rad bike! Smiles....
So overall, I would rate it 4.5 stars out of 5. It is really easy to use, it holds the bikes really good and stows easily. Priced right.