Welcome to Tesla Motors Club
Discuss Tesla's Model S, Model 3, Model X, Model Y, Cybertruck, Roadster and More.
Register

Accessory hitch vs. tow hitch

andrewket

Well-Known Member
Dec 20, 2012
5,704
1,525
I had decided not to get the tow package on my X because I've never towed a trailer before, and I don't foresee the need to do so. However, it would be nice to use a bike carrier, so I've been planning on getting the accessory hitch (it's 1.25" vs. 2").

However, looking again at the descriptions, it appears the hitch on the tow package may be removable, whereas the accessory hitch is not. I really don't want a hitch sticking out when not in use. I can always use the tow hitch for a bike rack.

Has anyone talked to Tesla about the differences? Are the tow hitches on most cars removable? And by removable, does it mean when not in use you won't have the receiver sticking out?

edit: so i've been trying to educate myself on hitches. I think I now understand; the tow hitch has a removable receiver - the ball piece. The hitch is permanent. The accessory hitch doesn't come with a receiver since it's not rated for heavy loads. The bike carriers etc connect directly to the hitch. The 2" tow hitch costs $750 and includes the wiring harness and the software option (brake controller). So normally one should only pick the tow hitch if they plan to tow (vs just bikes, etc.) But on the founder's series cars, you can choose the tow hitch for no additional charge. So if cost was not a factor, would you choose the smaller 1.25" accessory hitch or the 2" tow hitch if you were only going to use it for bike racks and maybe a luggage carrier?
 
Last edited:

FarmerDave

Supporting Member
Sep 3, 2015
547
311
Central PA
I had decided not to get the tow package on my X because I've never towed a trailer before, and I don't foresee the need to do so. However, it would be nice to use a bike carrier, so I've been planning on getting the accessory hitch (it's 1.25" vs. 2").

However, looking again at the descriptions, it appears the hitch on the tow package may be removable, whereas the accessory hitch is not. I really don't want a hitch sticking out when not in use. I can always use the tow hitch for a bike rack.

Has anyone talked to Tesla about the differences? Are the tow hitches on most cars removable? And by removable, does it mean when not in use you won't have the receiver sticking out?

edit: so i've been trying to educate myself on hitches. I think I now understand; the tow hitch has a removable receiver - the ball piece. The hitch is permanent. The accessory hitch doesn't come with a receiver since it's not rated for heavy loads. The bike carriers etc connect directly to the hitch. The 2" tow hitch costs $750 and includes the wiring harness and the software option (brake controller). So normally one should only pick the tow hitch if they plan to tow (vs just bikes, etc.) But on the founder's series cars, you can choose the tow hitch for no additional charge. So if cost was not a factor, would you choose the smaller 1.25" accessory hitch or the 2" tow hitch if you were only going to use it for bike racks and maybe a luggage carrier?

I think you got it reversed on hitch vs. receiver. The receiver is the female part permanently attached to the vehicle. The hitch is the drawbar and ball that slides into the receiver and is locked in place with a hitch pin. Drawbars come in different heights depending on the height of the vehicle being towed.
 

goneskiian

Active Member
Nov 16, 2012
2,623
811
Bellevue WA
I'm going with the tow option for the 2" receiver because I have and plan on mounting a 4 bike rack back there that requires a 2" receiver due to the weight. I have carried as many as 5 bikes on the roof of my Subaru so going to the X I'd be going to a bigger vehicle that can carry less toys.

I'm actually thinking about going with the six seat configuration to have the extra length down the middle for another bike as well as skis and other long stuff.
 

ptsagcy

Member
Nov 4, 2013
528
176
NJ
I'm going with the 6 seat configuration as well for a similar reason. I'm a fly fisherman and will be able to lay the rods in that space.

I'm going with the tow option for the 2" receiver because I have and plan on mounting a 4 bike rack back there that requires a 2" receiver due to the weight. I have carried as many as 5 bikes on the roof of my Subaru so going to the X I'd be going to a bigger vehicle that can carry less toys.

I'm actually thinking about going with the six seat configuration to have the extra length down the middle for another bike as well as skis and other long stuff.
 

andrewket

Well-Known Member
Dec 20, 2012
5,704
1,525
I'm going with the 6-seater because when I sat in the 3rd row at the reveal i thought it was a bit cramped. The 6-seater they had on display had a console in the 2nd row, but apparently that's not shipping. It should leave space for items, but also provide some additional leg room for the 3rd row.

Ok, so re-reading the descriptions of the tow hitch vs accessory hitch, when Tesla says it has a 2" removable receiver, that's the female piece just below the bumper. If that's removable, what does it plug into?

Trailer->Attaches to ball on drawbar->Receiver-> ??? ->Car

Apologies, this is an area I have very little experience.


edit: found this video, which shows an aftermarket hitch where the receiver is in fact removable. If Tesla did something similar, than it would seem the tow package is superior to the accessory hitch, since the latter cannot be removed.

Review of the Bosal Hidden Euro Trailer Hitch with Removable Receiver - etrailer.com - YouTube
 
Last edited:

goneskiian

Active Member
Nov 16, 2012
2,623
811
Bellevue WA
I'm going with the 6 seat configuration as well for a similar reason. I'm a fly fisherman and will be able to lay the rods in that space.
Almost wish there was a 4 seat option in case there is more vertical space without the third row. As it is I'm actually waffling a bit between the 5 and 6 seat options. ;-)

- - - Updated - - -

I'm going with the 6-seater because when I sat in the 3rd row at the reveal i thought it was a bit cramped. The 6-seater they had on display had a console in the 2nd row, but apparently that's not shipping. It should leave space for items, but also provide some additional leg room for the 3rd row.

Ok, so re-reading the descriptions of the tow hitch vs accessory hitch, when Tesla says it has a 2" removable receiver, that's the female piece just below the bumper. If that's removable, what does it plug into?

Trailer->Attaches to ball on drawbar->Receiver-> ??? ->Car

Apologies, this is an area I have very little experience.
I was wondering that too. It's got to be a pretty sturdy attachment to handle towing.
 

MikeL

some guy
Jan 24, 2013
1,044
138
Visual Aid : the 2" will look just like this :smile:
image.jpeg
one rusty part stays on the car, the other one sits in the shed most of the time. The drop-down to the ball won't happen w the Tesla cuz it's already plenty low.
Can you believe those plates are old enough to EXPIRE March '13 ?! Uugh
 

andrewket

Well-Known Member
Dec 20, 2012
5,704
1,525
Visual Aid : the 2" will look just like this :smile:View attachment 102202one rusty part stays on the car, the other one sits in the shed most of the time. The drop-down to the ball won't happen w the Tesla cuz it's already plenty low.
Can you believe those plates are old enough to EXPIRE March '13 ?! Uugh

Great, thanks. I'm going to have nightmares tonight. If it wasn't dark out I would run outside to take a picture of our honda civic with "Tesla X" plates. It's been driving around with those for a long time, too. :)
 

MikeL

some guy
Jan 24, 2013
1,044
138
Great, thanks. I'm going to have nightmares tonight. If it wasn't dark out I would run outside to take a picture of our honda civic with "Tesla X" plates. It's been driving around with those for a long time, too. :)
:smile::smile::smile:Ha! Beautiful
I have towed many things to many places. I'll be glad to help/advise anytime. Just double check everything and don't get complacent (w your $100k car, ha!) Soon my friend. Soon.
 

About Us

Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.

Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


SUPPORT TMC
Top