How to install the Tesla Model X tow hitch receiver

Discussion in 'Model X' started by Teslarati Bot, Feb 2, 2017.

  1. Teslarati Bot

    Teslarati Bot New Member

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    The Tesla Model X comes with an optional $750 tow package which includes a 2″ hitch receiver capable of towing a boat or any payload below 5,000 lbs. with 19″ wheels and 3,500 lbs. with the larger 22″ wheels. The SAE Class III hitch itself comes pre-installed onto the rear frame of the vehicle and goes generally unnoticed since the opening to the hitch receiver is covered by a plastic panel beneath the car.

    [​IMG]A plastic cover plate beneath the Model X rear diffuser prevents dirt and debris from entering the receptacle for the detachable hitch receiver.

    Tesla also includes a bag of accessories that comes as part of the tow package including the detachable 2″ hitch receiver itself and a wiring harness for trailers equipped with its own electronic brakes.

    Unless you've worked with a hitch adapter or hitch with ball mount before, installing Tesla's lockable hitch could come off a bit daunting of a task. This is largely due to the spring loaded lock-dial found on the detachable hitch that allows owners to secure the hitch to the vehicle using a key.

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    Installing the hitch receiver requires that you first unlock the locking assembly using the provided key. Lift the white flap, insert the red key and turn it counter-clockwise. The next step requires that you pull the round spring loaded lock-dial outward before rotating it clockwise until the assembly locks into place. At that point the hitch receiver is ready to be installed.

    [​IMG]Lift plastic flap to reveal lock tow hitch receiver lock assembly[​IMG]Unlock using the provided key before turning the lock assembly clockwise until it locks into place
    Remove the plastic cover beneath the rear diffuser and insert the unlocked hitch receiver directly into the hitch receptacle. Firmly push upwards until the round lock-dial with key rotates counter clockwise and snaps itself back into place. The hitch receiver is secured to the vehicle at this point and ready to be used with any rack or trailer that's compatible with a 2″ hitch.

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    Here's an example of Yakima's FullSwing premium bike rack installed onto our Model X. It's worth noting that we looked at several bike racks that would allow us to easily open the rear hatch without having to remove the bike, but also allow us to Supercharge (don't be this guy) and found this one to do the job quite well. It's certainly not the cheapest but that's also reflected in the build quality and the unique swing-out design. Read our in-depth review of Yakima's FullSwing bike rack for the Tesla Model X and see why we decided to choose a swing away type rack over Tesla's own hitch rack.

    [​IMG]Tesla Model X with Yakima FullSwing bike rack attached to factory 2″ hitch receiver

    Video on how to install the Tesla Model X 2″ hitch receiver


    Article: How to install the Tesla Model X tow hitch receiver
     
  2. Kevin Gallagher

    Kevin Gallagher New Member

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    Apr 24, 2017
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    Glasgow
    It is not that easy !
    I tried for 2 hrs. I took it back and it took two Tesla engineers over 30 mins to get it to lock in. I daren't take it out out in case I have to take it back each time
     
  3. gene

    gene Moderator

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    Admittedly, it took me awhile to figure out how to install the hitch. After poking and turning and shifting the hitch, then turning the "dial" some more, I finally figured it out how to install it. In fact, it's the primary reason why I decided to write up this "How To" because I knew others might encounter the same difficulty.

    But now I can pop the hitch off and back on within a minute :)
     
  4. Kevin Gallagher

    Kevin Gallagher New Member

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    Apr 24, 2017
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    Location:
    Glasgow
    Thanks Gene. I did follow a very useful Youtube video, but I just couldn't get it locked. As the Tesla engineers also had problems, maybe there was a problem with either the tow bar or the receiver. It is in now but I don't think it is worth playing with any longer as I plan to return the car to Tesla this week for a refund.
     
  5. gene

    gene Moderator

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    Sorry to hear about all of this mishap! Well, I hope everything works out for you. And please know that you're always welcomed to share pics with me directly if you want us to take a closer look at any issues you're having, which could very well be addressed with some guidance. If it's a defect, I'm sure Tesla would address it.
     

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