Hiatus truck camper unfolds into roomy hard-walled penthouse
From aluminum-walled ski lodges to carbon fiber tent toppers, pickup truck campers have been taking on some interesting new forms. The latest hails from Washington-based Hiatus Campers. Instead of the more common pop-up wedge with fabric sidewalls, the Hiatus Camper's full-length, high-rising pop-top relies on hard folding sidewall panels that lift up in seconds. The camper then fights off wind and weather more like a four-walled mini cabin, less like a flapping tent.
Most truck topper campers we've covered feature a combination of hard structural materials and fabric tent walls, but Hiatus eliminates the fabric to create a more stable, insulated and weatherproof mobile shelter, one designed to chase adventure throughout the calendar year. The folding, multi-panel design of the sidewalls allows them to easily compact flat below the roof during transit, then at camp the owner simply unlocks the side latches and lifts the roof into place with help from gas struts. The four walls rise into form with the roof, and one person can have the camper set up in less than 30 seconds, creating roughly 6.2 to 6.4 feet (189 to 195 cm) of standing room inside the truck bed.
Hiatus uses fiberglass construction for the upper pop-up walls and aluminum-framed and skinned construction down lower, insulating the walls with closed cell foam. The insulated hard-walled design is meant to be practical for all four seasons, providing more weather protection than breezy fabric.
Hiatus' hard-sided sleeper roof design is similar in concept to the system that German company Ex-Tec uses in its Land Rover pop-tops, albeit built into a more universal truck topper platform. Hiatus offers the campers for both midsize and full-size trucks, and long and short beds, making them an option for the full gamut of truck owners.
Every Hiatus camper includes a slide-away double bed platform that measures 74 inches (188 cm) long and 50 to 57 inches (127 to 145 cm) wide, depending upon truck size. Each camper also comes with a roof vent, LED lighting, front and rear slider windows, an integrated brake light, and roof tracks for mounting racks. Available options include rooftop cross bars, an awning, and side mounts for jerry cans.
The Hiatus is designed as a basic sleeper shell, accommodating those that need little more than four walls, a roof and a place to lie down for the night. Its base weight varies between 420 and 500 lb (191 and 227 kg) based on size. Those who want a more complete camper can work with Hiatus on a custom interior. Modular furniture examples include a long side bench with under-seat storage, a cabinet/countertop console, and a sink with electric pump. Hiatus also offers propane and electrical system hardware.
The Hiatus shell camper starts between US$13,500 and $16,000, depending upon the dimensions of the truck model to which it's being fit.
Source: Hiatus Campers