I was desperate to get the tow bar bike attachment for my A1- I finally gave up after about 300 hours with the poor salesman as costs were ridiculous. Looked a really practical option but not worth in excess of £1000. I've gone for the roof bars and two bike racks. About £400, so much cheaper until i drop my bike on the roof........
How do you plug your lighting board in ?
Please dont tell me you dont use one !
I prefer the roof bars and the bike racks on top, at least you can still access the boot without having to remove the bikes first.
I friend of mine was done for having a bike rack on the back without a lighting board. Be careful out there.
I also have gone for the tow bar option. My towbar is completely hidden which is great when its not in use and well worth the expense. I have a Thule bike rack bought from Tesco direct. I hate the type which fix on the back of the car as shown on previous posts because its too easy to damage the car and fiddly to fix in place but it is a cheap option and you still need electrics so that your lights are not obscured,
£1300 just to transport bikes is a quite frankly a stupid amount of money. You could by an old estate car with 12 months MOT for that and still have change left to run it for a year (fold the seats, chuck the bikes in the back and don't worry about mud etc). Don't get me wrong towbar mounts are one of the best solutions, it's just that they aren't cost effective if all you are going to use it for is bike transport. Great if you also have a trailer etc. They also have a major disadvantage in that if you are unlucky enough to be rear ended it's good bye bikes
The type shown in the photo are a big no no in my opinion. The tailgate is nither approved for nor is designed to be a load carrying structure. Would you trust the rear windscreen to take the load of two/three bikes? I wouldn't. They scratch the hell out of the paintwork. Bikes move and damage each other and the car. You can't get into the boot with the bikes on. Even if you lock the bikes to the rack all a thief has to do is cut the straps and take the lot. You've got problems with finding a light board and they again leave the bikes vunerable to a rear ender.
In my opinion roof bars and a good quality cycle carrier such as a Thule 591 gives the best compromise between cost and useability. The only real down side is carpark hight restrictors. If you can't remember you've got several grands worth of bikes on the roof and drive into one then really you deserve all you get!
The Corsa rack is a very interesting concept. My Mum works at a Vauxhall garage and I've asked her to let me know if they get one in with it fitted so I can have a gander. So far they've yet to see one fitted so it's unlikley to see them becoming popular and other manufacturers offering similar which is a shame.
I've been a cyclist for 20 odd years, driving for 15 odd of those so I've used just about every type of bike rack system going. I've even had a bike rack on a MX-5!