Last Updated on July 17, 2021
Despite what some people say, you don’t need to spend a lot of money to buy a rooftop tent. I just want to make sure that you spend money only when you need to spend money. I’m not convinced that if you pay double the price, you are going to get double the experience.
When it’s about buying the best rooftop tent for Tacoma, I think you should consider the following parameters more than anything else –
- Value for the price.
- Space inside.
- The fabric quality and durability.
- The rainfly and annex quality.
- Ability to withstand all weather conditions.
- The cover and mattress quality/thickness.
- Ladder quality.
- Ease of setting up and taking down, etc.
Unfortunately, most rooftop tents don’t offer a quality ladder. However, many of them excel in providing other features.
I know it’s quite a daunting task to separate the wheat from the chaff as the market is flooded with so many brands and models.
Let me do the legwork for you.
To make your life easy, here I’m going to review 6 best rooftop tents for Tacoma, mentioning all the upsides and downsides of each of the items. I’m sure it will help you to decide on the best bet for you.
Without any further ado, let’s dive right in.
Best Rooftop Tent for Tacoma Reviews
1. Smittybilt Overlander Rooftop Tent for Tacoma
Capacity: 2 person
Pole Material: Aluminum
Special Feature: Waterproof, Rainfly
Weight: 48 lbs
- Opening up and closing this tent is a breeze.
- The cover for the tent is durable, having a massive velcro strip all the way around to secure it to the edge.
- Taking the cover on and off is pretty straightforward.
- It features a long and strong ladder.
- This tent remains strong in high wind conditions like 30 mph.
- It doesn’t leak in thunder rain showers.
- A bright LED strip is included with the tent to ensure brightness at night.
- It weighs relatively light compared to other rooftop tents.
- You will get enough inside space to accommodate two persons comfortably.
- Enough head space when sitting up completely.
- It efficiently protects the outside element and breaths pretty well too.
- A removable and sturdy rainfly comes with the purchase.
- Adjusting the ladder height is vexing. It sticks while running on the rails. Managing the pins to lock and secure is troublesome too.
- The mattress should have been thicker.
- You might feel the LED is too bright.
- The straps for rainfly flaps on the side in the high wind sometimes make it difficult to sleep at night.
If you haven’t heard of Smittybilt, it’s a quite popular company in making accessories and tools related to offroading, camping, etc.
Smittybilt is quite an expert in making quality equipment at a bargain price. This rooftop tent is no exception, particularly when you are finding the top-notch rooftop tent for Tacoma.
This particular tent boasts almost everything you expect for a comfortable experience like little pockets, shoe bags, solid base, sturdy ladder, quality zipper for attaching the annex (annex is not included, you have to buy it separately), and some other benefits I’ve already mentioned above.
The mattress is comfortable if you lay on your back but a bit uneasy if you start laying on your side. Using memory foam would solve this problem, though.
Despite having a couple of hiccups, I still believe this one is quite a useful rooftop tent offering a good value for the price.
2. Thule Tepui Autana Rooftop Tent
- Multiple colors are available to choose from.
- A huge annex is included with the purchase offering the required meat and potatoes for hanging up comfortably.
- It’s a well-built tent made of some burly material.
- A sufficient number of windows ensure a lot of ventilation.
- It’s quite roomy. Three people can stay inside without any nuisance whatsoever.
- A ton of headroom inside.
- Attaching or removing the annex and rainfly is as easy as falling off a log.
- Long enough and quality ladder protected from rain. Kudos to the tent design that keeps the ladder inside of the annex.
- You can use this tent anytime, regardless of the season.
- It’s a tad learning curve to set this tent up and take it down in a quick time.
- The instruction manual is filled with pictures without any useful words. Adding some words would have made it comprehensive.
Thule Tepui is another quite long and handy rooftop tent for Tacoma, offering the necessary features for a comfortable experience.
Other than this version, you can buy from different other versions of this tent-like –
One of the most applauded aspects of this tent is the high-quality annex providing everything you need to hang out conveniently. It has doors and windows for enough ventilation. The floor fabric is super tough, to be honest.
The space inside is quite large. The height of the annex is good enough too to let a tall man (e.g., 5’11) stand up straight.
When you are buying a tent at this high price, you expect a comprehensive setup guide. Unfortunately, this is the worst part of this tent. It doesn’t send a good manual. Their official videos are not too helpful either.
Considering the price, I believe the Smittybilt is the better option than this one.
3. ARB 803804 Simpson Rooftop Tent
Capacity: 3 person
Pole Material: Aluminum
Weight: 185 lbs
- Well constructed, and the tent fabric is made of high-quality, durable material.
- It can handle heavy wind without being too unwieldy.
- Setting up and taking up this tent is not an uphill task at all.
- A ton of ventilation makes it a comfortable experience during the summer.
- It’s quite long to lodge tall people like 6’4.
- The purchase includes a lightweight and easily removable rainfly and annex.
- Considering the price, it seems like a pretty good deal.
- The weight is a bit on the heavier side compared to other popular options.
- The rainfly doesn’t cover the whole tent, only along the roof.
- A bit stiff sleeping pad. An extra soft mattress over it would solve this issue.
- When the ladder gets dirt in the grooves, it gets hard to extend it smoothly. I recommend changing this factory ladder and using some other tent ladder.
- The annex doesn’t have a floor.
- It doesn’t have any rooftop windows.
- A better instruction would have made life even easier in setting things up.
ARB Series III Simpson rooftop tent comes with an annex and offers the essentials anyone expects for a comfortable tenting experience.
The fabric shines in waterproofing, making it a handy rooftop tent during rainy days. Kudos to the polyurethane coating and top-notch quality welded seam.
Yes, it has some downsides, and ARB should have made a better version than this. Still, I believe you won’t regret too much buying this rooftop tent.
It’s not the chart-topper but does what it’s supposed to do.
4. Smittybilt Overlander XL (2883) Rooftop Tent
Capacity: 4 person
Pole Material: Aluminum
Weight: 168 lbs
- Super strong tent cover that handles tree branches, bugs quite efficiently.
- Straightforward to set up and takedown.
- Well constructed with durable and quality material.
- Two red straps (one on each side) are there to help you when you get in.
- It’s roomy inside (both wider and longer) to confirm a comfortable camping experience even for a 6’4 person. It can accommodate four persons without any hassle whatsoever.
- Ample headroom as well.
- A LED light strip is there to provide light in the dark.
- An all-weather tent can keep inside warm in the winter and provide a ton of ventilation in the summer.
- It shines in protecting from outside material.
- A quality rainfly comes with the purchase.
- Provides excellent value for the money.
- Like the other Smittybilt rooftop tent I reviewed here, the ladder that comes with this tent is also a poppycock.
- The base of the tent seems flimsy. No issue with durability, though.
- The mattress could have been thicker. You should add memory foam on top of it.
If you are an entry-level camper, I strongly believe this particular rooftop tent is the best bet for you.
As I said earlier, Smittybilt is utterly expert in making off-road accessories at an affordable price. They know what it takes to make a really useful rooftop tent, including the tent cover. This tent comes with a heavy-duty tent cover that keeps the tent safe when it hits the tree branches. The velcro on the bottom keeps the dust out pretty well.
It features everything a camper requires to get a pleasant rooftop camping experience.
If you remove the rainfly, you will be able to see through the top.
Although the base seems a bit flimsy, there is no risk involved. However, an aluminum base could have made it stronger.
Overall, I strongly believe this Overlander XL rooftop tent is another handy-dandy option for Tacoma. For the price point, you can’t go wrong with this model.
5. Overland Vehicle System Nomadic 3 Rooftop Tent
Capacity: 3 adults or 2 adults & 2 Children
Weight: 165 lbs
- Quick setup process.
- Sturdy base made of strong aluminum.
- The tent fabric, as well as the rainfly fabric, is quite thick and made of quality material to hold up in all weather conditions.
- It’s quite roomy inside.
- Unlike some other tents I listed here, this tent features a quite comfortable mattress.
- Enough ventilation because of the large windows all-round.
- Two red straps on both sides help you to get in and out comfortably.
- Adjusting this telescoping ladder height is a breeze.
- A handy LED strip comes with the tent to help you work in the dark.
- Several useful accessories, including a pair of shoe pouches, are included with the purchase.
- Good value for the price.
- The ladder is a tad wobbly. Don’t angle it too much to get rid of this issue.
- The rainfly flaps a lot in the heavy wind making it difficult to sleep at night.
- It’s a bit on the heavier side.
- Taking this tent down requires longer than usual.
Overland Vehicle System (OVS) Nomadic 3 is another quality rooftop tent capable of three adults or two adults and two children quite comfortably.
It’s a quality tent in terms of framing and the material used to make everything, including the poles, ladder, rainfly, annex, etc.
This tent offers almost everything you expect for a hassle-free rooftop tenting experience. Besides the pair of shoe pouches, you will find many pockets inside to keep your small tools or whatever.
It’s a straightforward job to set up and take down the rainfly, annex, top cover, etc. I dig the quality of the top cover too.
Although the mattress is quite comfortable, an extra memory foam would make it even more comfortable.
Overall, this OVS Nomadic 3 rooftop tent is something that gives the desired outcome without hurting the pocket too much.
6. Thule Tepui Explorer Kukenam 3 Rooftop Tent
Capacity: 3 person
- A good quality tent made of top-notch material.
- Easy setup and takedown process.
- Strong, functional telescoping ladder offering an easy height-adjustment system.
- Multiple windows and awnings, including a sky view window, ensure sufficient ventilation.
- A truly high-density comfortable foam mattress comes with the tent.
- Multiple colors are available to choose from.
- Strong base made of aluminum cap sheet.
- A high-quality quick-release rainfly comes with the tent.
- Useful instruction manual included for completing the assembling fast.
- The zipper design around the cover is not foolproof.
- The company should have added a pair of boot bags with the purchase at this price range.
- It doesn’t perform too well in extremely cold weather. With that said, using this Tepui insulator will solve this issue for sure.
Tepui tents have been acquired by Thule Group recently and have become Thule Tepui Tents. However, the quality and usability are quite good like before.
Like other quality rooftop tents I’ve listed here, this Thule Tepui tent also offers a comfortable tenting experience by protecting inside from outside materials quite effectively.
As it includes a high-density foam mattress, you don’t have to buy an extra memory foam in this case which I believe makes it stand out from the rest. However, buying an extra memory foam would take the comfort to the next level for sure.
Except for the few drawbacks I mentioned above, It ensures every other feature to consider it to be a great choice for outdoor adventures. It’s not crap by any means. The price is reasonable. It’s durable too.
When it’s about buying the best rooftop tent for Tacoma, first, I like to consider the ease of setting tents up and taking them down.
All the above rooftop tents are easy to set up and takedown in a quick time. All of them are well constructed and made of top-notch materials to ensure durability and protection from outside material.
If you are finding a quality option without hurting your pocket, Smittybilt Overlander Rooftop is the one you should get your eye in. However, their ladder sucks, particularly the height adjustment mechanism and the way to lock it to secure.
Overland Vehicle System Nomadic 3 is one that offers everything good, including the ladder, at an affordable price.