Saris B.A.T. Rack 999 Series Bike Rack

2.7/5 (20 Reviews)


Product Description

  • Carries bikes, skis and snowboards.
  • Compact wing and reversible arm allows you to hang bikes with the ability to carry small frames, women's frames, and unique frames.
  • Rack doesn't touch your vehicle -- just your hitch.
  • Tilts out so you can get to the rear of the vehicle.
  • Rack and bikes are lockable.


  • Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating

    Reviews 1 - 15 (20 Reviews Total) | Next 15

    User Reviews

    Overall Rating:4
    Value Rating:4
    Submitted by woodgrain a Weekend Warrior from Placerville

    Date Reviewed: April 20, 2011

    Strengths:    It's versitility when bringing other people's bikes other than your own. It's easy to use and I like it's tilt down feature so I can lower my tailgate on the truck.

    Weaknesses:    Like all things made these days, it has plastic involved. It hasn't failed me yet after years of use, but it will like anything made of plastic. Luckily they have parts available that may fail.

    Bottom Line:   
    All in all it's a good product that has served me well with road bikes as well as my mountain bikes. I use a frame adaptor on my Klien Mantra to make it fit better on the rack, but that bike is unusual. Some girls frames might need a frame adaptor as well for an easier mount.

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   Salmon Falls

    Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

    Price Paid:    $160.00

    Purchased At:   Monterey Ca.

    Similar Products Used:   Tule products

    Bike Setup:   Easy.

    Overall Rating:1
    Value Rating:1
    Submitted by k-j-e a Weekend Warrior

    Date Reviewed: October 22, 2008

    Strengths:    Saris's customer service is top-notch. The bike rack itself does not have any strengths.

    Weaknesses:    The plastic piece that holds the bike will most likely fail at some point. It may drop your bike on the highway, like it did to us.

    Bottom Line:   
    If you have this rack, find someone that will take it as scrap metal and get a different Saris rack. If you are considering buying one of these used - DON'T.
    We had this rack for years, and we knew how to secure our bikes. But one day as my wife was driving, she looked in the rear view mirror and her bike was gone! We searched the side of the highway, but we never found the bike. Saris's customer service was very helpful - after a thorough review of the situation, they sent us a different rack and a check to partially cover the cost of a new bike.
    IMO, Saris must know these racks have a poor design, which is why they discontinued the line and compensate people when they fail.

    Expand full review >>

    Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

    Similar Products Used:   Rocky Mounts roof rack


    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:4
    Submitted by leahcim a Weekend Warrior from Pittsburgh

    Date Reviewed: September 25, 2008

    Bottom Line:   
    Just a followup to my previous posting. I contacted Saris about the rack and the events of that fateful day. They were actually quite nice to deal with. Although, no admission of poor/faulty design was conceeded, they did offer up 1/2 of the replacement value of the bike and will be sending along a replacement rack. In this day and age where nobody takes Customer Service seriously, I think the folks at Saris held true to their word and stepped up to the plate make things right (at least partially). Thanks Saris!

    Expand full review >>

    Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years


    Overall Rating:2
    Value Rating:2
    Submitted by leahcim a Weekend Warrior from Pittsburgh, PA, USA

    Date Reviewed: September 3, 2008

    Strengths:    simplicity in attaching to vehicle

    Weaknesses:    little sloppy in the hitch which causes sway in the rack even if you tighten the threaded hitch pin. This past weekend while traveling to a road race, I had a carbon fiber bike slide off the rack - BAT wing and all. Thank God nobody was hurt. Poor design with the rubber straps to hold the bikes in place, the dials can be tightened the entire way and the BAT wings still slide. For these reasons, it is no wonder that they have abandoned the BAT wing in favor of a newer design.

    Bottom Line:   
    I would recommend that you purchase another design (yes I realize that Saris no longer makes this one), but for those of you looking to buy a used rack of this model - DON'T. I am sure that the newer designs from Saris are far better. I have little confidence in this rack after having had this experience. I may take the lead from the previous posting and see if Saris will take this one back and send me a newer model.

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   Coopers Rock, WV

    Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

    Purchased At:   LBS


    Overall Rating:4
    Value Rating:4
    Submitted by Peter H a Weekend Warrior from South Jersey

    Date Reviewed: May 23, 2008

    Strengths:    Simple and flexible

    Weaknesses:    Bat wings are brittle

    Bottom Line:   
    Unless design has changed: I have owned Saris Batwing carrier for about 10 years. I have found none of the issues mentioned by other reviewers. I have driven thousands of miles over interstates with variety of bikes on this rack (I am not a slow driver). The rubber straps are very secure. My only mishaps have been at too high of a speed on a dirt road with huge dips or holes. My Ford Expedition almost went air borne and one of two batwings broke (but bikes stayed strapped to the broken wing). Another was in my Jeep on sand road in Jersey Pine Barrens. Dip was too deep and the bike tires bottomed out and jammed back up through rack. Once again one of two bat wings broke, but the bikes stayed strapped into broken bat wings. Neither time did the bat wing break completely nor did the bikes fall at all ("just slumped on partly broken wing).

    The only way for bike to fall off with the wing attached driving on interstate is if the wing was not tightened or the end of the frame are stopping pin was not installed. Either problem would be the person putting the bikes in the rack, not the rack manufacturer. Any rack improperly used can cause damage to a bike.

    I've always have concern of wheels not being supported by other than quick release hub. At times I have duct taped them to the frames, but I've never had them slip or fall, only worried about it.

    I have had duct tape mar my bikes' finishes, but not the rubber rack straps.

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   Jersey Pine Barrens (I'm weird)

    Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

    Similar Products Used:   none

    Bike Setup:   Trek 4500
    Trek 20 year old road bikes

    Overall Rating:2
    Value Rating:1
    Submitted by Scott a Weekend Warrior from Plymouth

    Date Reviewed: March 30, 2004

    Strengths:    That's a hard one. When the adjustable arms are not broken they work great. The swing out works well. Great Customer Service!!

    Weaknesses:    Stabilizer wing breaks easily. Straps will ware on your paint, and have to be pulled REALY tight. Bikes do not stay in place (slide around on pole.) Pin for swinging out broke (and let my bike drag down dirt road, trashing tires & rims). Doesn’t hold my full boinger. doesn't hold my full boinger.

    Bottom Line:   
    3 broken bat wings, 1 broken pin, sliding wings, straps popping off & almost losing my bike, other bike doesn't fit, all in all, I'd say I won’t buy another! On the other hand, I called Saris/Graber and told them what happened and they said, "Send it in and we'll send you out a new one". So I called the LBS I bought it from to see if they have a box I could pack it in, and they said, "Bring it in and we'll give you a new one". So, I just got my new one and haven't used it yet. I hope things go better this time!!

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   All of them!

    Duration Product Used:   6 months

    Price Paid:    $167.00

    Purchased At:   LBS

    Similar Products Used:   None

    Bike Setup:   Hard Tail, Full Boinger

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by Denny Oberg a Weekend Warrior from Wahpeton, ND USA

    Date Reviewed: October 4, 2003

    Strengths:    Ease of setup...very durable...fits most if not all bikes...keeps the bikes stable while driving.

    Weaknesses:    None, so far.

    Bottom Line:   
    I did a lot of researching before I made the final purchase of my Saris B.A.T. Rack and I believe I got the best rack for the money. I agree 100% with the other positive reviewers when they say that those who gave a negative review must be doing something radically wrong in the setup. If you set it up right, you won't experience any problems (unless bike straps start breaking with wear). We just drove today over some bumpy roads at 40 mph and with highway speeds of up to 75 mph and though there was some bouncing at times, the bikes never hit each other and the straps stayed in place. I have an SUV with a tailgate that opens; I just rigged the rack so it tilts back about 4 inches and it opens up fine. I couldn't be more pleased with this rack. If you are really serious about getting a good rack, listen to the positive reviewers and buy the Saris with confidence. Then read the simple directions that come with the rack and experience the ease described by us, along with the durability and stability one would expect from a company that has been making racks longer than most other companies out there.

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   Itasta State Park

    Duration Product Used:   3 months

    Price Paid:    $139.00

    Purchased At:   Scheels Sports

    Similar Products Used:   None.

    Bike Setup:   The instructions were very good and made the setup a breeze. Once you figure out the configuration for each of your individual bikes, you can put the rack and bikes on each time in 10 minutes or less (this is for 2 bikes...add another 2 mintues for each additional bike).

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by Richard a Cross Country Rider from Davis,CA

    Date Reviewed: September 9, 2003

    Strengths:    able to fit many different frame styles and not have to worry about the order they go on.

    Weaknesses:    none

    Bottom Line:   
    First time on this site and just checking out how stuff I own stacks-up. I was suprised at the reviews that this rack got. It is by far the best rack I've ever used (roof not included). I can fit any bike on there without the use of a bike beam. I'm running it with 5 bikes and can say the thing is solid on the bumpiest roads and at high speeds.
    I can't understand why anyone would have a problem with this rack???? The only negative would be that on some frame designs set-up takes a long time, however most racks wouldn't fit those bikes in the first place. I guess some people don't want to take the time to read instructions. Your bike can't fall off if the mounts are tight and even if you didn't tighten them, the rack has a pin on the end just in case. Anyway, I like the rack alot...good sturdy product. Most other racks are too flimsy for me.

    Expand full review >>

    Duration Product Used:   2 Years

    Price Paid:    $250.00

    Purchased At:   lbs

    Similar Products Used:   Probably everything over the years, from A to Z.

    Bike Setup:   My road, XC, and freeride bikes are all Cdales.

    Overall Rating:2
    Value Rating:2
    Submitted by Nunya a Weekend Warrior from Dallas

    Date Reviewed: June 23, 2003

    Strengths:    Solid post. Allows trunk to open.

    Weaknesses:    Wing design and strength. I have the b.a.t 999Q Rack. The adjustable arm on one wing sheared completely off due to wind force while I was on the highway with my bike mounted. The system for attaching the bike is insufficient. I've found that the rubber straps and shallow grooves on the bat wing do not hold the bike in place. At highway speeds the bike will blow off the pegs. Thus I have to add additional straps to hold the bike. Also the system that tightens the wing onto the post is insufficient. After tightening the wing as much as possible the whole assembly will still move along the post.

    Bottom Line:   
    Not recommended

    Expand full review >>

    Duration Product Used:   6 months

    Price Paid:    $150.00

    Purchased At:   LBS

    Similar Products Used:   Cheap trunk mounts.


    Overall Rating:1
    Value Rating:1
    Submitted by Keith a Weekend Warrior from Maple Grove, MN

    Date Reviewed: June 1, 2003

    Strengths:    Could be a great rack for someone looking for a rack with a 3-bike capacity.

    Weaknesses:    I bought the 999D, which is advertised as a 5-bike compatible with the optional B.A.T. wing (model 999A). I wouldn't want to put 4 of my bikes on this rack, much less five. The rack is much too short. To advertise this rack as 5-bike compatible is rediculous. The 999D ("Deluxe" model) includes a rear tail light that is a piece of junk. Great idea that was poorly executed. My kid's have toy flashlights that are better quality then this.

    Bottom Line:   
    I'm looking for nothing less than a full refund.

    Expand full review >>

    Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

    Price Paid:    $300.00

    Purchased At:   LBS

    Similar Products Used:   None

    Bike Setup:   Specialized Stumpjumper with Deore XT component group.

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by Greg a Cross Country Rider from Utah

    Date Reviewed: April 24, 2003

    Strengths:    1) Almost any bike will fit on it. 2) They won't come off. 3) It holds *5* bikes! 4) You can open the glass on your suv/minivan without taking off or folding down the rack.


    Weaknesses:    People who have strange frame geometries who don't want to puzzle out how their particular frame will fit on this rack won't be happy. It sticks out a lot because of 3) and 4) above.



    Bottom Line:   
    If you'll take the time to figure out how to get your bike on this rack correctly it will go on, and stay on and not get the hell scraped out of it by swinging into your other bikes. I've tried nearly every frame style known to man on this rack (v-frame, Jekyll, Sugar, small kids bike, 24" teen bike with "bent" upper tube, Specialized and they've all went on. I even won a $5 bet with my friend who bet I couldn't get his Specialized, two Jekylls (one with a lefty) and a cheap v-frame (with *HUGE* tubes) on his Saris. I then went out and bought my own. The downside is that it took me a good part of an hour to figure out how to mount the v-frame bike correctly. Of course, I didn't have the advantage of a manual on that trip and my friend hadn't read it. The important thing to realize is that you can hook the three mounting points to either side of any of the followning: top bar, bottom bar, shock tube, seat tube, steer tube, wheel. Once you've figured out how to put a particular bike on the rack its pretty easy to put on again later. One caveat is that when you have more that two or three bikes it is a pain to move the first bike over 3 or 4 batwings. Practice makes this faster/easier. Bottom-line is that this is the only rack that I've found that will simultaneously hold my lefty equipped Jekyll, my wife's Sugar 4+, my son's Tyro (24-inch with bent top tube), and my daughters 12-in "Target special", and still have room left for our bizarre cheapo fully-suspended v-frame monstrosity with tubes as big around as my wrist.

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   Maple Canyon

    Duration Product Used:   6 months

    Price Paid:    $160.00

    Purchased At:   Aardvark Cyclery

    Similar Products Used:   Lots of cheapo racks.

    Bike Setup:   Canondale Jekyll, Gary Fisher Sugar, various kids bikes.

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by Larry a Weekend Warrior from Mahwah NJ

    Date Reviewed: March 4, 2003

    Strengths:    versatility, tilt, quality

    Weaknesses:    none

    Bottom Line:   
    What a great bike rack! I have never had a problem like the others supposedly have... I just think they have no idea how to use. I even contacted Saris directly in my research and they expressed concern over user error. Use a u-lock and common sense and you'll love this rack. Plus it holds my skis!

    Expand full review >>

    Duration Product Used:   6 months

    Price Paid:    $125.00

    Purchased At:   local store


    Overall Rating:2
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by Rich a Weekend Warrior from Middletown,NY

    Date Reviewed: February 25, 2003

    Strengths:    Easy to use, versatility

    Weaknesses:    none

    Bottom Line:   
    Recommended. I can only assume user error with the reviews I've read about the rack... I have found no issues. Plus I can have my skis attached in the winter season. I got a great deal on a brand new 4 bike rack off e-bay.. only $100!! If you're careful with putting your bikes on, following the directions, it's perfect.

    Expand full review >>

    Duration Product Used:   3 months

    Price Paid:    $100.00

    Purchased At:   EBAY

    Bike Setup:   Trek

    Overall Rating:1
    Value Rating:2
    Submitted by Phil from North Dakota

    Date Reviewed: August 22, 2002

    Strengths:    Quick mounting, solid frame, that's about it.

    Weaknesses:    BAT design.

    Bottom Line:   
    Piece of junk, don't buy this rack. The BAT wings are flimsy, the straps do not hold well and it does not work as advertised. Common full-suspension bikes, such as my buddy's GT I-Drive, are almost impossible to mount securely. My hardtail seems OK on it, but the rubber mounts have worn through my paint, probably because it does not secure it very tight. If I wouldn't have special-ordered this thing and paid shipping, I would have returned it.

    Expand full review >>

    Duration Product Used:   1 Year

    Price Paid:    $160.00


    Overall Rating:1
    Value Rating:1
    Submitted by Paige a Cross Country Rider from NJ

    Date Reviewed: June 30, 2002

    Strengths:    None

    Weaknesses:    Wing design - overall design

    Bottom Line:   
    I wish I had read these reviews a year ago. One week ago, I was travelling south on a highway in NJ and heard a noise. I looked in my rear view mirror and saw my Cannondale R800 road bike fly off my Saris bat rack still attached to the wing. I had done everything possible to secure the bike, as I always did. It was strapped to the wing with the Saris rubber straps and I also strapped it to the rack with bungee cords. That still did not work because the wing itself is what came off the rack.

    Thankfully, no one was injured or killed. My bike hit a car (the driver and car are ok) and then several cars and a truck hit the bike. By the time I made a U-turn on the highway, drove north to get back to my bike, made another U-turn and drove back down, my bike was GONE!!! The polioce couldn't find it and neither could I.

    I have called Saris, sent the rack back and written them a detailed explanation. I expect them to pay for this bike, which was custome built for me.

    Expand full review >>

    Duration Product Used:   1 Year

    Similar Products Used:   First hitch rack - just bought a Hollywood

    Bike Setup:   Cannondale R800 and/or Cannondale Super V 700SX

    Reviews 1 - 15 (20 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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