An SUV tent, also known as a truck tent, is a camping tent designed to attach to an SUV, truck or other large vehicles. The best SUV tent will be very lightweight, durable, and easy to set up.
An SUV tent is a camping tent that allows the user to go camping without leaving behind the luxuries of home. SUV tents feature a direct access hatch into the vehicle, allowing access to air conditioning, heating, and power. It’s important to know that some SUV tents require the use of a vehicle, where others can function on their own (Source).
There are two basic types of SUV tents. Rear-access tents and rooftop tents. Rear-access tents sit on the ground like a normal camping tent but have a specially designed awning that drapes over the rear hatch of an SUV or truck. Rooftop tents are designed to sit on top of a large vehicle, allowing the sunroof to be used as the entry point into the vehicle.
If you are planning for an off-the-grid camping trip, a long-distance road journey, or you’re just wanting to camp out in your backyard for fun, SUV tents can come in really handy. They provide a completely different experience compared to a standard tent, and they offer a great way to take full advantage of the space and mobility provided by an SUV or truck (Source).
There are many different SUV tents to choose from, and it can be rather difficult to decide which one is best for you. Before buying an SUV tent, you should consider its ease of assembly, price, and size. It is also important to consider whether or not an SUV tent has adequate ventilation.
In this write-up, we will give you the scoop on all the top-rated SUV tents. All of the SUV tents in this review will provide a spacious temporary shelter, whether you are camping alone, or you are with a group of friends.
What Is an SUV Tent?
Table of Contents
- 1 What Is an SUV Tent?
- 2 How Much Does An SUV Tent Cost?
- 3 Comparing The 5 Best SUV Tents
- 4 1. Napier Backroadz SUV Tent – Best SUV Tent for Camping Everywhere
- 5 2. Soprtz SUV Tent – Best Roomy SUV Tent
- 6 3. Rightline Gear SUV Camping Tent – Best Versatile SUV Tent
- 7 4. Kingcamp Compass SUV Tent – Best Freestanding Open Truck Tent
- 8 5. Kamp-Rite Oversize Tent Cot – Most Functional & Well-Designed Tent
- 9 How Does an SUV Tent Work?
- 10 How to Install an SUV Tent
- 11 Things to Consider Before Buying SUV Tents
- 12 Ready To Buy The Best SUV Tent?
An SUV tent is a camping tent designed to attach to an SUV, truck or another large vehicle. This allows the user to go camping without leaving behind the luxuries of home.
SUV tents have a direct access hatch into the vehicle to allow for the use of air conditioning or heating, powering small devices and easy access to the interior of the vehicle even during poor weather. There are two basic types of SUV tents: rear-access or truck bed tents and rooftop tents.
Rear-access or truck bed tents sit on the ground like a standard camping tent but have a specially designed awning which drapes over the bed or rear-access hatch of a truck or SUV.
Rooftop tents are designed to sit on top of a large vehicle. The sunroof of the vehicle is typically used as the access point between the tent and the vehicle.
How Much Does An SUV Tent Cost?
There is a wide range of SUV tents on the market, with a variety of different types made specifically for certain kinds of vehicles as well as universal tents made for any make or model of truck, van or SUV.
With so many options to choose from, such as simple awnings which hang from a vehicle’s exterior to multi-room, multi-family tents the price range for SUV tents can range dramatically.
For 1-2 people, simple awnings and truck bed tents typically range from $75 to $200 but don’t offer many extra features. However, more elaborate rooftop SUV tents cost between $200 and $3,000.
For larger groups, rear-access tents typically have fewer added features and can range from $100 to around $500. Unless you are camping in the most rugged terrain and need the security or versatility of a rooftop tent, rear-access tents are likely to be the best value.
With plenty of models available, our SUV tent review outlines some of the best products to ease your search.
Comparing The 5 Best SUV Tents
|Napier Backroadz SUV Tent|
|Soprtz SUV Tent|
|Rightline Gear SUV Tent|
|Kingcamp Compass SUV Tent|
|Kamp-Rite Oversize Tent Cot|
1. Napier Backroadz SUV Tent – Best SUV Tent for Camping Everywhere
Moreover, it is eye-catching and can be easily attached to the canvas and sleeves of your rear SUV model. Its polyester-taffeta construction is not only appealing but also durable as well. Additionally, the mesh bug screen covering the tent keeps insects out for a truck bed tent camper at night.
Aside from those, the Napier Backroadz SUV Camping Tent also features an additional flap on the exterior that is perfect for buffeting winds. The liftgate panel that comes along with a roving composite ascertains a comfortable and calm stay.
However, due to its size, this tent is best for small spaces.
Crafted from polyester fabric and thus perfect for any weather, it features four windows, with the rear window giving you the freedom to regulate the interior ventilation.
2. Soprtz SUV Tent – Best Roomy SUV Tent
Perhaps the feature highlight of this tent is the extensive cargo space. Being a freestanding tent, it provides for a maximum extent. Additionally, its lift-gate gear panel with a roving composite system maximizes the level of comfort and calmness in the tent.
On one hand, you can use this tent in any place your vehicle can access; while on the other hand, you can attach it to your vehicle if you need to use the cargo area for storage.
Aside from that, the tent’s pole boasts fiberglass and steel; providing maximum stability and strength alongside protection from any weather condition.
Consequently, setting up the tent is a breeze. Many users claimed they were able to set it within five minutes.
The rear window of the tent moves up and down to provide enough freedom for the users to regulate ventilation interiorly as well.
3. Rightline Gear SUV Camping Tent – Best Versatile SUV Tent
The inside of the Rightline Gear SUV Tent features upper and lower sleeve straps that easily adjust and attach for a perfect fit.
For outdoors, safety from harsh weather conditions is always a priority, especially when using a tent. Hence, the Rightline Gear SUV Tent guarantees this using the storm covers that provide maximum storm protection and privacy.
Moreover, setting up this flexible side tent is very easy. You simply have to lay the tent out, assemble the fiberglass poles, and then attach the threads through the sleeves of the pole.
The truck trail gate directly opens into the SUV or Jeep tent and eases the access to the cargo area of your vehicle.
Other intriguing features of the Rightline Gear SUV Bed Tent include:
- Side gear pockets provide a perfect place to store your keys, jewelry, phone, and other specifics.
- A lantern hook that comes in handy if you are not ready for starlights.
- Glow in the dark zipper pulls that make it easy to slip in and out of the tent.
- A bathtub floor that doesn’t necessitate a ground tap.
- A carrying back that easily fits the folded tent for adequate storage.
4. Kingcamp Compass SUV Tent – Best Freestanding Open Truck Tentbest gas grills to enjoy the delicious foods while camping with your family.
Due to its structure, the Kingcamp Compass SUV Tent can also be used as a profile ground shelter. Furthermore, it is constructed with double polyester material that comes with a waterproof coating. This protects users from scorching sun rays and inclement weather conditions.
Additionally, it boasts three shock-corded poles made from fiberglass and steel canopy poles that not only stabilize the tent but also make it easy to assemble. Therefore, setting it up takes less than 5 minutes.
Alongside that, it measures 124 inches long and 84.6 inches wide. However, when not in use, this truck bed tent folds up conveniently and fits its provided carrying bag.
That said, the Kingcamp Compass SUV Tent is perfect for those who either need an impromptu campsite in the beach or just need some additional shade around the yard.
5. Kamp-Rite Oversize Tent Cot – Most Functional & Well-Designed Tent
To offer its protection, the top of the tent is sealed to avoid bad weather conditions like rain or extreme wind; and alongside that, this tent boasts an aluminum build.
However, although it has a sleek design, it can accommodate only two people. Perhaps it is because of its elevated sitting position which aims to provide comfort. Furthermore, the bed tent sits 11 inches away from the ground to protect you from insects and possibly reptiles in the forest.
Hence, overall, the Kamp-Rite is a heavy-duty and solid SUV tent.
How Does an SUV Tent Work?
Rear-access or truck bed SUV tents are designed to function similarly to a normal camping tent but with the added convenience of an extendable sleeve or covered opening which can be draped over and attached to the bed of a truck or the rear hatch of an SUV.
This allows either the tent or the back of the vehicle to be used as a sleeping area with the added storage space of the tent or the vehicle itself. The tent can also be used as a convenient mudroom or changing room before entering the vehicle.
Rooftop SUV tents are more reliant on the vehicle than truck bed tents because they sit on top of the vehicle rather than sitting on the ground. However, there are some models sit on the ground for support but extend over the top of a vehicle for additional support and vehicle access.
How to Install an SUV Tent
Depending on the manufacturer there may be variations to these instructions. As such, you should always follow the instruction manual included with your tent.
No matter what type of SUV tent you are installing, they all require these general steps. First, find a level campsite and clear away any debris. Next, unpack your tent and lay it on the ground with the vehicle sleeve facing the cargo area of the vehicle.
Follow the tent’s instruction manual to be sure your tent is properly assembled. Once the tent is standing, attach any plastic hooks or clips to the frame of your vehicle for support.
Then, from inside the tent, unzip the sleeve door, walk the sleeve toward the vehicle and slip it under the bumper and over the roof to enclose the sleeve completely around the vehicle.
Attach any remaining hooks or clips to the vehicle and enjoy your tent. Keep in mind that some tents may require a special tool to drive the posts into the ground.
Things to Consider Before Buying SUV Tents
SUV tents come in handy during various outdoor activities, especially camping. When you are camping, you need to bring all the necessary items there. A quality backpack is always recommended.
Therefore, having a good SUV tent for such wild outdoor activities is lucky compared to poor quality makes, which may interfere with your adventurous plans.
That said, there are some conditions to look into before purchasing an SUV tent. Outlined below are some of the essential factors to consider.
SUV Tent Material
It is of immense importance to consider the material used to make the tent before picking it. Otherwise, failure to check on this may result in purchasing a flop material that won’t be anything more than simple fabrics, straps, and poles.
Note that the material or make of the tent determines its durability. Tents are made of various materials like taffeta, polyethylene, and steel coated with plastic hooks.
Apart from durability, every safety aspect should be put into consideration. For instance, you should ensure that no lead or phthalate materials are included in the tent make.
There are numerous types of tents you can choose from. Finding the right one will depend on your vehicle. For instance, hatchback tents are best suited for small SUVs and other vehicles with extra cargo space. These tents allow the users to convert the cargo area into a protected and relatively comfortable sleeping space.
Similarly, there are tents designed for large SUVs and minivans. Both types attach to the vehicles, but large models are quite daunting to install. On the other hand, there are universal tents that can be used for nearly all vehicle types.
Rain Flies and Awnings
The best SUV tents come with either a single or double rain flies that help in keeping water out of the tent. Flies designed for the tent’s roof allow plenty of light to pass through while still providing undoubted protection from the rain. Such tents are a great choice for camping through heavy rainstorms.
Most importantly, you should consider how much the tent costs before purchasing it. This can at times be confusing, but once you review the tents’ features themselves and determine if they fit your needs, you’ll find it easy.
As mentioned before, tents are made from a myriad of materials. However, there are other specifics about the tent make that should be considered. For instance, the technology used should make it easy to install and provide comfortable ventilation.
There are also extra features such as zippers that provide adequate space for privacy. Other models have four windows that maintain the internal air fresh and clean as well.
Additionally, extra features that enhance the functionality of the tent include poles, stakes, and straps. Always consider how comfortable and sturdy these features are. Feel the floor and ventilation mechanism among other features.
SUV truck bed tents come in various sizes. Choosing the perfect size is hugely reliant on the number of people you plan to share the tent with and the size of your car.
Always consider a convenient and reasonably sized tent that will comfortably accommodate your guests. It should also not be too large or too small for your car.
Ready To Buy The Best SUV Tent?
Disappointments from faulty tents and substandard structures are perhaps the last thing you would want to experience during your outdoor adventures. The best SUV tents are listed above, and they range from truck tents that attach to SUVs to full-size van side tents.
These truck bed tents provide great functionality, durability, and good protection from adverse climatic conditions and insects. Similarly, others have impeccable features that complement their functionality such as mesh panels, rain flies, and awnings.
And, if you’re camping around your tent during a hot summer day, consider also getting misting fans to alleviate the heat. Also, consider buying bedphones so you can listen to music before you go to sleep in your tent.
Having the right flannel sleeping bags inside your SUV tents also ensures you a good night’s rest – keeping you warm. Not all SUV tents available on the market are useable with all SUVs and not every product can be used without a vehicle either.