Offroading Gear Granville IV-S SUV Instant Popup Camping Tent Review For the 5th Gen 4Runner
I live in Colorado and try to spend a fair amount of time out in the wilderness. My method of camping varies depending on the types of recreation I am partaking in. A lot of my hunting and scouting trips for hunting involve backpacking.
A lot of my weekend warrior trips with friends involve car camping in a National Forest off a fire road. I thoroughly enjoy them both even though the types of camping are different. I am always looking for the next piece of sweet camping gear and love trying out different types of tents and shelters. Brenan indicated that he had a unique type of tent made by Offroading Gear that needed a review, so I happily volunteered for the job.
Offroading Gear is a company based in Canada that offers a variety of products for overlanding, offroading, and camping at reasonable prices to Americans and Canadians alike.
Their products range from root top tents and awnings to recovery gear and towing products. There are a few other Offroading Gear reviews on Trail4R that you should check out as well. Another writer here on Trail4R.com featured the Offroading Gear soft shackle and another covered the Offroading Gear recovery kit,
Find This Tent Online:
- Granville Tent: Check Price
The Granville IV-S tent is an instant popup tent for SUVs that combines the typical tent camping experience with the added space and utility of having access to the rear of your vehicle. Essentially, the instant popup tent is assembled next to the rear of your vehicle. Once that is complete, an extension of the tent fabric is attached to the rear of your 4Runner. Straps are included on the extension to attach them to your wheel wells and your roof rack. The tent description indicates that the tent has room enough for 5 people with another 2 people included in the rear of your vehicle.
This tent is a larger piece of gear and will take up some trunk space. The full tent bag measures about 1′-0″ by 1′-0″ by 4′-0″ and weighs about 25 pounds.
The tent bag includes the following contents:
- Granville IV-S Popup Tent
- Tent Stakes
- Guy Lines
- Awning Poles
- Tent Extension Straps
The tent description says that the tent can be assembled in as quickly as 30 seconds.
It took me a little longer than that to set it up the first time. The instructions for the tent are printed on the inside of the tent bag which is a nice feature. It was pretty straightforward to follow them and get the tent standing up. It was a little wonky to lift up by yourself but lifting it up a second time will be much easier once you see out how the poles unfold, extend, and lock.
The next step was to attach the tent extension to the rear of the 4Runner. It took two tries before I had the tailgate close enough to the tent. You need to be right up on it.
Next, you need to connect the tent extension to your wheel well and roof rack.
Once this is complete, you can open your hatch and tighten the straps to create a better seal of the tent extension around the rear of your vehicle. The final steps include staking your tent down, attaching guy lines to your awning, setting up the awning poles, attaching guy lines to the tent corners, and putting on the rain fly.
My first impression was, “Damn, this thing has a lot of space”. The tent footprint is about 9′-0″ by 9′-0″ by 7′-0″ tall.
I have slept in a lot of small tents but this was the first tent where I felt like I had a ton of real estate. That being said, my wife was sleeping in the back of the 4Runner and I was sleeping with the dog in a tent for 5 people so, of course, it felt massive. I am sure you could fit five adults in there but I think it would probably be more comfortable with 4. That way you aren’t on top of each other when you need to go out and pee at 3 AM.
Tent Extension Around Hatch
Next, I checked out the seal of the tent extension around the rear of the 4Runner. The tent extension itself has a little skirt that comes down on the inside to try to seal up any openings. The skirt did a pretty good job of this but there were some small openings. I didn’t notice any bugs inside the tent that evening but it wasn’t that buggy of a night. It should be said that if you are in a dense mosquito area, they will make it inside. They ALWAYS find a way in.
The next thing I noticed about the tent extension was where my hatch was raised up against the tent fabric. It seemed like the two little wings on the hatch created a bit of a pointy spot in the fabric. I didn’t have a good feel for the tent fabric durability so I placed a paper plate to cover the point part of my hatch so the fabric wasn’t stretched so tight.
The awning was pretty large and provided a good-sized area to hide in the shade. The one interesting thing I noticed once it was set up was that the awning also doubled as the tent front door. When the awning was up, only a mesh zippered door enclosed the front of the tent. So if you wanted some privacy, you would have to lower the poles from the awning to zip the front closed. The Colorado weather during the typical camping season is pretty fair and consistent. For backpacking, I have learned to enjoy sleeping under tarps and not having a front door. So not being able to close the front of the tent for privacy didn’t bother me. Also, my dog is a bit nervous inside tents so she actually preferred being able to look outside and keep an eye on things.
Overall Pros, Cons, and Unknowns
- The size of the tent was great. If you have a family of two or three and a pet this is plenty of space.
- The access to the rear of the 4Runner was great. We have a sleeping set up for the rear of the 4Runner so we can use the tent at max capacity. Even if you didn’t have anyone sleeping up there it is nice to be able to access your gear without having it thrown around your sleeping space.
- Reasonably priced compared to rooftop tents or larger party standalone tents.
- Setup instructions are printed on the inside of the tent bag.
- Large mesh front door for visibility. This could also be a con.
- Can be used as a standalone tent without the addition of your vehicle. The side with the tent extension can be sealed up with a mesh screen and typical fabric screen. This is a nice feature because it allows you to drive away during the day but leave the tent free-standing and enclosed. All you need to do is disconnect the tent extension straps. Also, it’s handy if you can’t find a flat spot next to where your vehicle has access. You can set up the tent wherever you need to.
- Pointy hatch parts on the fabric. It seems that a stock height 4Runner is at the limits of the tent extension. The hatch probably isn’t so tight against the tent extension fabric if you have an SUV that is lower to the ground. I think my paper plates did the trick of rounding out the pointy area though. I may reinforce this area ahead of time with some Tenacious Tape so I don’t have to carry around the plates.
- There is no good way to shake the tent out and clean debris out of the inside. I tried collapsing the tent a bit and turning it sideways with my wife to shake out the dirt. The tent itself is a bit too cumbersome to really do it well. Sweeping it out might be best.
- The tent case is bulky. A big tent doesn’t pack down to a small case. Next trip I may throw it on the roof rack. The only concern with this would be if it’s raining and your tent would be saturated before it even gets put up.
- Large mesh front door limits privacy without taking down the awning. It was fine for me, but I could see others really enjoying closing the front door.
- The durability of the tent is unknown. I haven’t slept in it enough to see how it handles being set up and taken down a bunch. Also, I don’t have kids running in and out of the tent yet. They might be the real test for a larger family-type tent like this.
- The environmental performance of the tent is unknown. I haven’t experienced high winds or rain in it yet. The tent poles are study and the tent fabric and rainfly seem water-resistant but you always need to test your gear. The tent also came with plenty of guy lines and stakes so I imagine that if you utilized all the stabilizing gear that the tent would hold up well in wind.
- Aftermarket ladder on your hatch which may interfere with the tent extension. I am not sure to the full extent but it appears there may be some conflict.
- Aftermarket roof rack may have some sharper points at the end rails which may interfere with the tent extension. This will likely be roof rack specific.
This is a solid car camping tent for the price, space, and utility it provides. I will continue to use it for car camping to see how it holds up over the long run. Additional sections to the post will be updated over time as I see how the tent handles usage, wind, and rain.