Wednesday, May 30, 2012
No bike rack necessary!
A few years ago I heard an episode of Car Talk where a man called in asking why his gas mileage on his fairly fuel-efficient car dropped about 10 mpg when he had his bike on his rear bike rack. Tom and Ray were pretty sure it was because he was disrupting the carefully designed aerodynamics of his car. They felt certain that if he just took the front wheel off his bike and put it inside the car, he'd get the same great gas mileage he was supposed to get.
Ryan and I transport our bikes inside our car with the back seat folded down. Obviously if we needed to transport more people that wouldn't be possible, but it does work for us most of the time. And it's really not very hard to take the wheels off a bike, especially not the front wheel. My bike actually fits in the car with both wheels on. With both of them in there, we take both wheels off my bike and just the front wheel off Ryan's.
I didn't see anybody else at the triathlon with their bike in their car; everyone had a bike rack. Gas is so expensive here that I don't know why you wouldn't put your bike inside your car if you had the space! And ditto about skis and snowboards; a roof rack or rocket box also kills gas mileage. We can fit four people and four sets of skis/snowboards inside our car and sure, it's a little cozy in the back seat, but it's not like we take two extra people skiing everyday.