Finding the perfect tent for an upcoming camping adventure can be tricky, especially if you’re looking to use it year-round thereafter.
That being said, it’s not impossible to find a tent to suit your needs, and we’re almost certain that there’s one on the market for you!
We’ve been doing a little research into the best 4 person car camping tents on the market and figured we’d share our results.
Note that the tents we took a look at were only suitable for car transport. If you’re after a tent that you can hike with, it’s worth reading our guide to camping tents.
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- The 10 Best 4 Person Car Camping Tents 2021
- Things to Consider
The 10 Best 4 Person Car Camping Tents 2021
Night Cat Camping Tent
First up is the Night Cat waterproof camping tent. This instant pop up tent features automatic hydraulics, sleeps up to four people, and can supposedly weather any storm.
The Night Cat tent’s most appealing feature is the automatic hydraulics. The middle pole technology considerably reduces the effort required to pitch a tent. Seriously. A small child could pitch this tent in no time.
We’re also a big fan of the tent’s double doors and mesh windows, which allow air to flow freely through the canvas. The buckles either side of the exits also ensure that the doors can be fully opened when required.
- The tent has two compartments, one for sleeping and one for storing luggage.
- Hydraulic pressure mechanism makes for easy setup.
- The fiberglass poles are wind resistant.
- Carrying bag packs down to just 25.6” x 6.7”.
- Only fits a Queen size mattress.
- Only suitable for two adults and two children (probably better suited for a family of three).
Kelty Wireless Tent
The Kelty Wireless tent packs down to 22” x 6” x 7” and weighs only 7.5lbs, making it one of the lightest, portable, family tents on the market.
The tents two compartments are ideal for a split living and storage setup, and the roomy sleeping compartment comfortably fits six adults.
What’s more, the Kelty tent comes with a handy duffel bag for ease of transport. Slip the cross-body strap over your shoulder and enjoy the walk to the car! The inner nightlife pocket is also a handy feature that saves you banging your head on a low-hanging torch.
- Fiberglass poles are lightweight and easy to carry.
- Includes a nightlight pocket.
- Features two doors that allow optimum airflow.
- As it’s a six-man tent, it’s quite pricey.
ALPS Mountaineering Meramac
ALPS Mountaineering is a reputable brand, and the Meramac tent has been a popular buy with campers for years. The tent features a small awning over the front door to protect you from the elements and is made from a breathable material perfect for muggy weather.
The two doors are ideal for allowing air into the tent and provide easy entrance from either side. This is particularly handy when purchasing a 4-man tent as it gives the illusion of extra space.
The shock-corded fiberglass poles are sturdy yet lightweight, and the tent can be set up in next to no time at all!
- Features durable 210 nylon floor and strong zippers.
- Multiple storage pockets on the inside.
- Free-standing two-pole design is easy to setup.
- The floor space is only 5.9m² which is quite small for a four-person tent.
CORE 6 Person Dome Tent
The CORE 6 person dome tent is perfect for a family of four who enjoy their space. Not only is this tent incredibly affordable, but it also boasts H20 block technology, so it’s practical all year round.
Water repellent fabrics, sealed seams, and rain-resistant doors all work together to make the CORE 6 compatible with rain. The tent also boasts advanced venting and can handle hot weather well too.
We love the electrical port access that allows you to thread electrical wires into the tent without opening the front door. If you’re not using it, simply zip the hole up!
- Easily fits two queen air mattresses.
- Features a gear loft with a lantern hook and pockets to store small gadgets.
- Water repellent fabrics make it suitable for wet-weather camping.
- The tent only has one compartment so you have to sleep next to your luggage.
Coleman Evanston Dome Tent
The Coleman dome tent with screen room has a roomy interior measuring 10 x 9ft and features a full-door screen room for extra storage space. For a spacious tent, it’s quite affordable too, and we’d dare to say it’s our favorite 4-man family tent!
We love how bright and airy this tent is, all thanks to the meshed windows and wide doors that fold right back. As for being weatherproof, the frames are wind-responsive, and the inverted seams prevent rainwater from leaking in.
One of the best things about this tent is the rainfly, which sits on the top of the canvas. Simply remove it, and you’ll enjoy views of the night sky as you drift off to sleep. Dreamy, right?
- The full-floor screen room stays bug-free!
- Two queen-sized airbeds easily fit inside the sleeping compartment.
- Sets up in just 15-minutes.
- Comes with an additional rainfly to protect the top of the tent.
- It’s only available in green so no chance of standing out from the crowd.
Marmot Limestone Camping Tent
The Marmot Limestone camping tent boasts two doors, two separate compartments, and full-coverage fly. It’s also a super resilient and reliable tent that can be used in most weather conditions (it’s 3-seasons). Because of that, it’s pretty expensive.
If you can get over the cost, you can enjoy a spacious tent that weighs just over 10lbs and is easy to set up. As for fitting it in your car, this tent packs down to 27.5” x 10” which is just about small enough to fit on the back of a motorbike!
- Color-coded poles and clips make for easy setup.
- Almost vertical walls create a spacious interior.
- Features a full-coverage weatherproof rain fly
- The tent only has one compartment and one D-shaped door.
Coleman Juniper Lake Instant Tent
The Coleman instant dome tent with Annex is a little different to the tents we’ve looked at so far. Instead of having one big shared space, or a ground space split into two compartments, this tent boasts an annex!
Suitable to sleep up to 4-people, this reliable tent is perfect for those who enjoy separate storage space. Aside from the annex, the tent features a number of small storage pockets suitable for stashing away handy goods like torches and maps.
As for building the tent, the pre-attached poles allow for a speedy setup. When it’s time to head home, simply pack the tent away into the storage bag. This tent weighs less than 14 pounds and measures roughly 32.6” x 8” x 8”.
- The Annex can be used as storage or as an extra bed.
- It can be set up in just 60-seconds!
- Modern WeatherTec system keeps you cool and dry inside.
- While the annex is a great storage space, it’s a little claustrophobic to sleep in (unless you’re a small child!).
Coleman Cabin Tent
The Coleman cabin tent with instant setup is part of the Coleman ‘Dark Room’ range tents that block 90% of sunlight. If a lie in wasn’t enough to sell you on this product, it’s also quick and easy to set up and convenient to store.
The tents rugged Polyguard double-thick fabric makes it a reliable buy and a good investment, suitable for years of usage.
As for breathability, the tent’s door can be clipped back, allowing air to flow freely into the open space. The integrated vented rainfly also helps with airflow and doesn’t require any additional assembly.
- Welded corners and inverted seams make it weatherproof.
- Has a central height of 4ft and a roomy interior.
- Can fit a queen-sized airbed easily.
- Takes only a minute to set up thanks to the attached poles!
- The tent doesn’t have a second compartment or an awning to store muddy boots.
Moon Lence Pop Up Tent
The Moon Lence Pop Up tent can be constructed in no time! It’s the ideal tent if you’re always on the move, reloading the car and hopping from one campsite to the next.
The tent has a surface area of 5m², weighs just over 10lb, and has a capacity of four people. It’s available in orange, green, or blue and is very affordable given its size.
This tent is advertised as a 3-season tent, and while it’s water-resistant up to 2000mm and features dual SBS zippers, it’s better suited to summer months and warmer climates.
- Spacious enough to fit a fifth person.
- Breathable design featuring four large mesh windows and a D-shaped front door.
- Instant pop up mechanism makes for a quick set up and an even speedier pack down!
- The tent’s inner ceiling is quite low at 49.2” (125cm).
Ayamaya Pop Up Tent
We have to say, the Ayamaya pop up tent with vestibule isn’t the best car camping tent for families, but it does serve a purpose.
If you’re new to camping, this tent is a doddle as you let it out of the back and launch it onto your camping pitch. From here, it’ll pop open before your eyes and your holiday has begun!
As for features, this tent is made of high-quality material (190T Polyester), is entirely waterproof, and features a double layer system to prevent condensation. It’s also light and airy thanks to the large mesh windows and fold back door.
- It’s actually spacious enough to fit up to six people!
- Boasts a separate compartment for luggage and shoe storage.
- Electrical access points to run cables through without opening the tent door.
- As it’s a popup tent, it’s not all that sturdy.
- For what it is, it’s not cheap!
Things to Consider
When shopping for a family tent, you’ll likely have a lot more things to consider than if you were looking for a compact 2-man tent.
Now you’ve got more people to keep happy, and more space to manage!
While you’re not going to be walking far with a 4-person tent, you will still have to lug it to and from the car. Make sure you pick a tent that you can physically carry.
Always check the weight of the tent with the poles and tent pegs included. Some tent bags come with shoulder straps to help bear the load.
While a four-person tent might sound spacious, you might want to consider how happy you are sharing close quarters.
If you have room in the car and can extend your budget, consider purchasing a small six-man tent. That way, you’ll have a little extra wiggle room.
Are you happy to sleep next to your luggage, or would you prefer your four-person tent to have two separate compartments?
If you’re satisfied with only one compartment, then you’ll be able to save money. If you’re after a little more organization on the inside of your tent, expect to spend a little extra.
For many, having a compartment is well worth the cost, particularly if you’re camping for more than four days.
If you’re traveling with children (and even if you’re not), it’s probably a priority to get your tent up and down in no time. The idea of wasting precious holiday time arguing over tent instructions is a concept most campers find hellish.
Pop up tents and tents with automatic hydraulics are always easy to pitch, but you also have to consider the downside to these.
Are they as sturdy as fiberglass pole tents? Can they pack away small? As with anything, there are both pros and cons to a quick-to-build tent.
Tents can be 3 season tents, extended 3 season tents, and 4 season tents. Depending on what time of year you’re going camping, you’ll need to purchase a tent accordingly.
3-season tents are ideal for summer, extended 3 seasons are ideal for spring and autumn, and 4 season tents are suitable for the colder months.
While 3-season tents are the most popular thanks to them being lightweight and waterproof, 4-season tents are better suited to heavy rainfall.
Do you need a footprint for your tent?
Tent footprints aren’t necessary, but they help maintain the quality of your tent and extend its life.
Footprints are a piece of fabric that protects the groundsheet from the ground, it’s laid under the tent before you assemble it.
Are single skin tents any good?
Yes, single skin tents certainly serve their purpose! They’re great for allowing airflow through the tent and are usually made from a breathable material. They perform particularly well in dry summer months.
Do I need to buy a waterproofing spray to protect my tent from rain?
If you’re buying a waterproof tent, then no. It’s not your job to maintain this; it should last a long time.
However, if you want to really look after your tent, there’s plenty of waterproof sprays on the market.
If my tent only has one compartment, is it worth purchasing a small popup tent too?
This is entirely down to personal preference, but if you don’t want to sleep with your luggage or leave it in the car, this would be a good solution for extra storage.
There you have it, our comprehensive guide to the best 4 person car camping tents available in 2021.
The Bottom Line?
We think Coleman comes out top for 4 person family tents, and they’ve got plenty to choose from. However, the Moon Lence Pop Up tent is super affordable, and the Kelty Wireless tent is quite spacious (if you have the cash to splash).
If you’ve managed to fall in love with one of the tents we’ve mentioned, it might be time to start looking at camping accessories. Our guides to the best car camping sleeping bags, best backpacking knives, and best waterproof backpacks should all come in handy.
If you’re still a little undecided on which tent to opt for, take a look at our thoughts on particular camping tent brands for some extra guidance.
Own one of the above tents?
If you’ve tried and tested one of the above tents, please feel free to add a comment below and share your personal experience!