Which Class Of Trailer Hitch Is Best Suited?

How many trailer hitch classes are there? What are the differences between these classes? Which class of trailer hitch is best suited? Let our post enlighten you!

Each trailer type has its purpose and its own set of capacities and dimensions. Nevertheless, what are these classes? How many available sizes, and which class of trailer hitch is best suited? It can be frustrating if you have never seen trailer hitches before. 

Follow our useful info to pick the best one for you!

Which Class Of Trailer Hitch Is Best Suited

Different Types Of Trailer Hitch Classes?

Currently, there are 5 types of trailer hitches in total. Class V has the highest capacity, and Class I has the lowest one. The Hitch classes specify the weight and the opening size.

Below is a quick rundown of their associated power and standard sizes of the receiver of these 5 hitch classes.

However, let’s learn some of the terms below, as we will talk much about the parameters of these five trailer hitch classes.

  • GTW-Gross Trailer Weight: It is the trailer’s loaded weight. Weigh the filled trailer on the scale to assess the GTW.
  • TW-Blade weight: The pressure will decrease owing to the coupling on the ball. Use a tongue scale or another tool mentioned here to calculate TW.

How To Choose The Right Size Trailer Hitch

Class I Hitch – Use


Out of the five classes available, the A-Class I trailer hitch is the championship lightweight.

It can be said to be flawless for small loads such as cargo boats, small trailers, mobility scooters, bikes (max 2), canoes, or kayaks. A Type I trailer hitch is also present on many SUVs, minivans, and passenger cars (mid-size, full-size, and compact).

Class I and II trailer terminals typically have receivers with sizes 1-1 / 4 “x 1-1 / 4”. Nonetheless, it should be noted that Type II accessories won’t match Type I trailer hitches.

For details:

  • GTW (maximum) (Gross Trailer Weight): from 1,000 to2,000 lbs
  • TW (maximum) (Tongue Weight): from 100 to 200 lbs
  • Opening of the receiver: 1-1/4″

Class II Hitch – Use

Class 2 Trailer Hitch

A Class II trailer hitch is larger than a Class I trailer hitch in terms of average capacity. Class II trailer hitches, like Class I, are usually found on SUVs, minivans, and passenger cars (mid-size, full-size, and compact).

Cargo carriers, bikes, canoes, kayaks, mobility scooters, small trailers, small pop-up campers, and small boats can all be loaded with a Class II trailer hitch.

Since Type I and II accessories are often similar sizes. Many people assume Type II accessories should be used with Class I. They don’t go together at all!

An operated block button is available in Class I. This button causes the fitting hoses and tow bars to slide to a certain pot into the trailer’s open slot. Type II accessories, on the other hand, have a more extended handle than Class I.

As a result, they’ll strike the stopper instead of slipping into the receiver, stopping the Class I from being overloaded with a more decadent Class II accessory. That means you can use a Type I supplement in a Type II hitch in its entirety.

For details:

  • GTW (maximum): from 2,000 to 3,500 lbs
  • TW (maximum): from 200 to 525 lbs
  • Opening of the receiver: 1-1/4″

Class III Hitch – Use


Currently, Type III trailer hitches seem to be the most popular types. This is because it has a lot of weight capacity (3,500 lbs GTW-8,000 lbs GTW).

The size of Type III gives you more selections for anything from rickshaws to cargo handling. Specifically, Class III Typical loads on mid-sized utility trailers, lawn maintenance equipment, campers, bikes, cargo carriers, canoes, kayaks, snowmobiles, and motorcycles.

What’s more, Class III standard loads you should know include full-size cars, large SUVs, minivans, and trucks.

Type III couplings have 2 “x 2” expansion holes. However, if the adapter is available on hand, you could still utilize 1-1 / 4 “accessories so that it can engage with Type III joints.

  • GTW (maximum): from 3,500 to 8,000 lbs
  • TW (maximum): from 300 to 800 lbs
  • Opening of the receiver: 2″

Class IV Hitch – Use


Many professionals appreciate the weight capacity with Type IV couplings. Class IV connectors usually have 2 “x 2” receivers, just like Class III connectors.

However, the weight capacity that the Class IV hitches produce is even more potent than that of Class III as it goes up to 12,000 lbs GTW.

Type IV couplings have 2 “x 2” wide openings. However, you could use the adapter in case you would like to use a 1-1 / 4 “with 2” process.

What’s more, the Type IV standard often loads on large boats, large campers, horse trailers, and toy haulers. Class IV standard loads consist of  large SUVs and heavy-duty trucks.

  • GTW (maximum): from 5,000 to 12,000 lbs
  • TW (maximum): from 500 to 1,200 lbs
  • Opening of the receiver: 2″

Class V Hitch – Use

These are heavy trailer hitches. They were created exclusively to transport the heaviest trolleys and trailers: large toy haulers, equipment haulers, multi-car trailers, and horse trailers.

Most Type V trailer hitches have a 2-1 / 2 “hole. Nevertheless, some have both 2” holes, and the biggest even have 3 “holes.

If you want to tow a smaller item with a Type V hitch, you can use the adapter.

  • GTW (maximum): from 10,000 to 25,000 lbs
  • TW (maximum): from 1,000 to 4,000 lbs
  • Opening of the receiver: 2″, 2-1/2″, or 3″

The Bottom Line

Which class of trailer hitch is best suited? You have the answer for yourself already. Each hitch class trailer has its articulation and purpose, as well as its own set of power and dimensions.

The fastest and easiest way to find out which hitch trailer is right for your vehicle is to research the information above and your vehicle specifications thoroughly. Just enter your year and model, and we’ll quickly show you a hitch trailer that works best for you.

Louis Gilliland

Louis Gilliland

He began his career as a mechanic, working on cars, trucks, and trailers in Michigan for over 20 years. He quickly developed a passion for towing and hitches and began specializing in that field. Louis started his own business installing hitches and providing towing services, quickly building a reputation as one of the best in the state. He also began teaching and training other mechanics on proper hitch installation and towing safety.