The brainchild of former NASA engineer Garrett Finney, Texas-based Taxa isn't the camper company to call if you're looking for a run-of-the-mill teardrop or fifth wheel. It's a place where trailer building mixes with science and art, resulting in otherworldly campers like the Cricket and the FireFly. Its latest effort, the TigerMoth, is a small, 910-lb (413-kg) towable that uses some innovative solutions to camp two in blissful, breezy comfort.
It doesn't take long to figure out that the 12-foot-long (3.7-m, with tongue) TigerMoth comes from the same creative minds behind the Cricket. It wears the unmistakable asymmetrical bodywork that makes Taxa's designs so unique. It's not just a smaller Cricket, though, as its upsloping roof is quite distinct from its larger, older brother. It looks as if Taxa aspired to find the polar opposite of the common teardrop and its rounded edges and dropping roofline.
An interesting style is great for couture clothing and bespoke sports cars, but a successful camping trailer design is all about overnighting comfort and practicality. Taxa uses some interesting space-saving techniques to ensure it meets those goals.
Instead of going with a dedicated indoor or tailgate kitchen, Taxa saves space with a 48-in-long (122-cm-long) slide-out that rolls away under the convertible couch. That slide-out sets up in less than a minute and neatly holds the optional kitchen box, which includes a hand-pump faucet, 4-gal (15-L) water tank, worktop, and storage for a stove and cooking tools. The pull-out can also be used without the kitchen box as a general storage drawer.
The TigerMoth's interior can be accessed via the standard rear door and the funky, swing-up hatch on the side. Taxa says it added the latter to make for easier loading and provide more connection with the outdoors. The hatch does add an extra ventilation option while also serving as a roof to sit under in inclement weather, but we prefer something a little simpler and more symmetrical like the rectangular wings of the Mogo Freedom.
The interior is quite simple, featuring a two-person, 80-in-long (203 cm) convertible couch/bed against the driver-side wall and a pop-up table. NASA-inspired attachment points, hooks, and bungees serve to secure gear to the walls and ceiling. Three windows with shades and screens provide pest-free ventilation and views outside. The 12V cabin LED lighting system extends out over the kitchen for food prep in the dark.
The TigerMoth's super-simple design makes it more an activity basecamp than a comfy home away from home, and Taxa has prepared it for the role with gear-hauling provisions. In addition to the aforementioned interior storage, the design includes an optional rooftop cargo deck and an extra-long tongue that can hold the optional cargo-loading step and toolbox.
The TigerMoth isn't designed to travel to the roughest adventure destinations like, say, BCT MOAB trailers, but Taxa describes it as "dirt road ready." It includes a powder-coated steel chassis, torsion axle, 12-in (30.5 cm) ground clearance and 15-in wheels.
The TigerMoth's sides, doors and roofs are built from an aluminum composite, and Taxa approximates R-value at 6. The trailer has electric brakes, a 120V shore power inlet, two 12V outlets and an inlet for optional Zamp solar panels.
The TigerMoth is available now around the United States. Taxa lists MSRP at US$12,900 but stresses that that is the the maximum list price and actual sales prices are determined by dealers.