Written by 3:34 am Popular RV Types

Best Truck Campers of 2020

Do you know that you can transform your truck into a recreational vehicle? Yes, no more need for you to sleep on the bed of your truck or set up a tent when you go camping.

A truck camper is the key to enhancing your camping experience. You can take your truck camper to amazing places. You just attach it at the bed of your pickup truck and off you go on your adventure to the great outdoors.

Truck campers are not the most popular choice for RVs. But this article might make you change your mind.

Today’s truck campers can be at par with motorhomes and travel trailers when it comes to offering creature comforts on the road.  

In this article, we’ll discuss what truck campers are, what amenities and comforts they offer, how much they cost, and which are the best truck campers for sale in the market today in the hope of enlightening our audience about how great these rigs are.

So read on to find out if a truck camper is the RV that’s best for you.

What are truck campers?

First off, let’s clarify what truck campers are.
These are recreational vehicles that sit at the bed of your pickup truck. Truck campers are also called slide-in campers, pickup campers, or truck bed campers because you have to slide them into your pickup truck and attach them to the bed of your truck so that they become one with the vehicle, making your truck the towing vehicle for your RV.

Truck campers come in 2 varieties: a slide-in camper and a pop-up truck camper. We’ll discuss them a bit more so that you can choose the perfect truck camper for you.

Slide-in or Hard side Camper

A slide-in camper has hard walls all over it and sits high on the bed of your truck. It is already an RV in a compact size. Once you reach your destination, you can detach it from your truck and it can stand on its own so you’re free to use your truck to explore your surroundings.
Since they are made of solid walls, these campers offer better insulation and sound isolation.
Hard side truck campers also come in different floorplans and models which allow you to choose the features that would suit your travel needs. They can come with a dry bath, sofa, and slide-outs.
Since slide-in campers are made of hard walls, they are on the heavy side and would need a mid-sized to one-ton truck to carry them.
Compared to other RVs, slide-in hard side campers are better suited for off-road adventures because of their compact size and how they’re built.

Pop-up Truck Camper

The roof of a pop-up camper can be expanded so that you can have a bigger and wider living space inside your RV. This means that they have a shorter height when you’re traveling compared to the slide-in camper since the roof is lowered onto the main body of camper.
Pop-ups also have lighter weight compared to the hard-sided slide-in campers thus making them ideal for those with ½ ton pickup trucks.

Pop-up campers reduce drag, provide better driving dynamics and fuel efficiency than the hard sided models. These are also better suited for your extreme off-road adventures.

What are the best truck campers for sale?

There are various models of truck campers for sale from different manufacturers. That’s why we thought of helping you out by narrowing down your choices.
Without much further ado, we present to you the Top 10 Best Truck Campers of 2020.

  1. Lance 1172 Truck Camper
  2. NuCamp Cirrus
  3. Alaskan Truck Camper 10’ Cabover
  4. Bigfoot RV 25C10.6E
  5. Adventurer 910DB Truck Camper
  6. Northwood Manufacturing Arctic Fox 1150
  7. Northern Lite 10-2EX Limited Edition Truck Bed Camper
  8. Rugged Mountain Granite 11RL
  9. Palomino Explore Backpack Truck Bed Camper SS-1500
  10. Host Campers Mammoth 11’6″

 
Let’s go over them one by one to know more about their specs and features.
 
lance truck camper

Lance 1172 Truck Camper

Key Specifications:

  • Floor Length: 11’11”
  • Dry Weight: 4,174 lbs
  • Sleeping Capacity: 5 to 6
  • Type: Hard side, Slide outs

What you’ll like about it:

Lance’s 1172 model is their flagship truck camper. Why not? It offers everything you need to have an enjoyable and comfortable adventure at a compact size and light weight!

It is built with double slides to provide users with ample living space. The 1172 has skylights and large windows to maximize light and ventilation. It also has a dinette, dry bath, sofa incliner to offer you luxury while you’re out in the wilderness. How cool is that?

The bathroom has a marine toilet with black tank flush. There’s also a storage cabinet and a hinged bath door with mirror.

The cabover has a carpeted bed base, headboard and queen size mattress with pillow top and bedspread that all combine for a restful sleep after a tiring day outdoors.

Lance 1172 has a furnace, water heater, exterior wash station, pantry with shelves that are adjustable, refrigerator, and sink.

If you want more, you can opt to upgrade your unit to have removable clothes rods, a bunk bed with child restraint so that your kiddo will have his own bed to sleep in, microwave oven, and other electrical systems installed. You can also choose the color of your interiors. You can have them in Java, Platinum, or Royal to make your truck camper reflect your personality.
 
nucamp Cirrus

NuCamp Cirrus

Key Specifications:

  • Overall Length: 209″
  • Dry Weight: 2,916 lbs
  • For: 3/4-ton truck with a 6.5-foot bed
  • Sleeping capacity: 3
  • Type: Hard-side, non-slide

What you’ll like about it:

NuCamp RV offers you their best truck camper that comes with the Froli™ Sleep System, ALDE Heat/Hot Water, a wet bath with a fold down sink, electric jacks with remote, and modern aesthetics.

Think about camping in the wilderness with the comforts of home right at your disposal? You don’t have to worry about your bathroom needs, you have a spacious bed, and it comes with a 210-Watt Solar Kit to give you power even when you’re off-grid.

The Cirrus standard package comes with an A/C. microwave oven, and AM/FM Bluetooth® 19″ TV for your entertainment. It also has a wireless backup camera which is very helpful while you’re driving. It’s interior is chic, classy, and comfortable. There’s also ample storage area in their deluxe cabinetry and TopLine Maggie roof rack.

You also have to option to avail of their rear awning and Lagun Table System which can be adjusted and mounted as needed.
 

 

Alaskan Truck Camper 10’ Cabover

Key Specifications:

  • Floor Length:
  • Dry Weight: 1,985 lbs
  • Sleeping Capacity: up to 4
  • For: full-sized trucks
  • Type: hard side, pop up

What you’ll like about it:

The 10′ Cabover Camper is manufactured by Alaska Campers which assures you that it is made of premium quality from its design to the materials used and overall workmanship.

It is remarkable for its solid wall top that can be raised or lowered according to your need. Lower it down when you’re driving for your safety and raise it up to offer you comfort in your living space. It gives you plenty of head room with its ceiling height of 6’3 1/4″.

It is made of solid walls and no canvas that’s why this camper offers good insulation. You also don’t need to worry about storage space as the 10′ Cabover Camper offers ample cabinets and storage space for your travel stuff.

The bed area has a customized mattress and cushions that are considered to be the best in the industry. Standard equipment includes a stove, rink, refrigerator, and water and propane supply.
The features of the Alaskan 10′ Cabover Camper provide you with a great traveling experience.
 
Adventurer 910DB Truck Camper

Bigfoot RV 25C10.6E

Key Specifications:

  • Floor Length: 17’11”
  • Dry Weight: 3,180 lbs
  • Sleeping Capacity: up to 3
  • For: full-sized trucks
  • Type: hard side, non-slide

 

What you’ll like about it:

Bigfoot RV offers quality, comfort, and convenience for all seasons in their 2500 series. The 25C10.6E model comes with a high density EPS insulation, 30,000 BTU furnace, water heater, electric jacks, skylights in the living room, and rear door awnings.

The interior headroom is at 6’4″ which makes moving around easier. It also comes with an oven and range top, microwave, refrigerator, exterior shower/wash station, porcelain toilet, fan, LED interior lighting, and a stereo CD player. It is prepped for an LCD TV. The bed is a spring-filled mattress.

This is a pretty solid standard package for a truck camper guaranteed to make your vacation comfortable wherever you go. But if you’re not yet satisfied, you can upgrade your package to include an A/C, DVD stereo, crank-up TV antenna, exterior speakers, wireless rear view camera, solar panel, or an RV BBQ hookup among other options. They even allow you to choose among 4 color combinations for your interiors to be sure that everything is according to your liking.

Adventurer 910DB Truck Camper

Adventurer 910DB Truck Camper

Key Specifications:

  • Floor Length: 9’10”
  • Dry Weight: 3,373 lbs
  • Sleeping Capacity: 4 to 5
  • For: LB trucks only
  • Type: hard side, single slide

 

What you’ll like about it:

To give you a heads up, this model can only fit in full-size LB trucks. There are so many features to love about this one!

First, it is a dry bath truck camper! Oh yes, you have the convenience and comfort of having your own toilet and bath wherever you go. You can always freshen up after your outdoor adventure.

Its slide out feature lets you enjoy more space and have a 7 cu ft stainless steel refrigerator, large dinette/lounge plus underneath, you have large storage drawers to keep your travel gears.

Your sleeping area has a California king bed with a designer cover and the cabover floor is fully carpeted. There’s a night stand, double door wardrobe with mirror, and skylight to still make you feel that you’re one with nature.

The materials used are of high quality and guaranteed to last – from the flame treated fabric upholstery to the Aria Premeer hardwood cabinet doors and industrial grade vinyl flooring.

They also made your safety a priority. The Adventurer 910DB has smoke, carbon monoxide, and LPG detectors and a fire extinguisher should you need one. The LPG compartment is corrosion resistant. The GFCI outlets are protected. The entrance door has a dead bolt and screen. It is also RVIA Code compliant.

The model can also be upgraded to have a 100 watt solar panel, Onan QG 2500 LPG generator, an A/C, 19″ LCD 12V TV w/Triple Pivot Mount – HDMI, electric power bunk, microwave, and a roof rack system.

You can also avail of their Elite Option Package which includes having interior and exterior LED lights, 4-season insulation package, 3 year structural warranty, and upgrade your exterior into a Lamilux 4000 Two Toned High Gloss Gel Coat Fiberglass.

The Adventurer 910DB is truly a camper like no other!
 

Northwood Manufacturing Arctic Fox 1150

Key Specifications:

  • Floor Length: 11’4″
  • Dry Weight: 3,358 lbs
  • Sleeping Capacity: 4
  • For: flat-bed trucks
  • Type: hard side, single slide

What you’ll like about it:

You need space? Northwood Arctic Fox 1150 will give you the space you need. With an interior height of 6’7″, tall people won’t have a hard time moving around inside the camper.

The Fox also maximizes its space to offer you all the amenities you need while on the road. The slide out will give you access to the refrigerator and a dinette that converts into a sleeping area.

It features a dry bathroom, kitchenette with microwave, 3-burner range, queen mattress with bed spread with USB charging ports on both sides of the bed to keep your devices fully charged for another day’s adventure.

It also has an AM/FM/CD/DVD Player w/Bluetooth for your entertainment. To ensure your safety, the Arctic Fox has smoke, LPG & CO leak detectors. There’s a fan and a 20,000 BTU auto ignition furnace that has a digital thermostat to keep you comfortable whatever the weather. The Arctic Fox 1150 comes with bigger capacity for fresh, grey, and black water tanks to last longer on the road.

For upgrades, you can have a 19″ 12V LED TV, a generator, 100 or 170 watt solar panel, Thermal Pane windows, additional landing steps, 11K BTU A/C, Aussie grill, and a convention oven among others. You can also ask to have an overhead bunk in the dinette area for extra sleeping space.

For the standard features alone, this truck camper surely won’t disappoint you. Add the upgrades and you’re fully loaded with everything you need on the road.
 

Northern Lite 10-2EX Limited Edition Truck Bed Camper

Key Specifications:

  • Floor Length: 131″
  • Dry Weight: 3,317
  • Sleeping Capacity: up to 4
  • For: full-sized trucks
  • Type: hard side, non slide

 

What you’ll like about it:

Northern Lite 10-2EX Limited Edition Truck Bed Campers are available in 5 floorplans – 3 long bed and 2 short bed models but all of them offers a toilet and shower .

This truck camper comes with all the works – a 6.3 cu ft 3-way refrigerator, 3-burner stove with oven, microwave, 12V LCD TV, stereo CD/DVD player, fan, 10,000 BTU A/C, external speakers, electric jacks, and 2 185-watt solar panels.

The spacious bed has a high-end queen mattress on top to offer you a relaxing sleep after the day’s exciting activities.

You have the option to add glass thermal windows, U-shaped dinette, 2,500 LP generator, and even a boat rack.

The Northern Lite 10-2EX Limited Edition Truck Bed Campers surely have everything you need. The only thing we don’t like about it is that it is limited edition only.

 

Rugged Mountain Granite 11RL

Rugged Mountain Granite 11RL

Key Specifications:

  • Floor Length: 9’7″
  • Dry Weight: 3,720 lbs
  • Type: hard side

 

What you’ll like about it:

Although Rugged Mountain is one of the newest players in RV manufacturing, they’ve proven that they know what the RV community needs and wants. The Granite 11RL is well-designed and very functional – there’s ample space for storage and movement!

With an interior height of 7′ 7.5″, this truck camper is perfect for tall individuals! Everyone has the freedom to move comfortably inside the camper. There are cabinets, wardrobes, hampers, and a roof rack for your storage solutions and keeping everything organized.

The interior design is simple but classy with its real wood paneling and painted bead board walls with caulked corners.

The Granite 11 RL has a dry bath with step tub. It has a water capacity of 36 gallons for the fresh tank, 38 gallons for the grey tank, and 24 gallons for the black tank. It also has an outside shower with courtesy light when you want to clean yourself before going inside the camper.

Aside from these, the Granite 11RL has a 7 cu ft refrigerator, 3-burner stove with range hood, sink with pull down faucet, water heater, a dinette, and interior and exterior LED lighting. It’s also prepped for an A/C, microwave, DVD, TV, and cable/satellite, and electric jacks to make adding these in your truck camper easier.

The Granite 11RL offers excellent value for its owners.
 
Palomino Explore Backpack Truck Bed

Palomino Explore Backpack Truck Bed Camper SS-1500

Key Specifications:

  • Floor Length: 9’6″
  • Dry Weight: 1,910 lbs
  • For: 3/4 Ton Truck 
  • Type: soft side

What you’ll like about it:

Palomino has always got you covered when it comes to comfort, style, and affordability.

The Palomino Explore Backpack Truck Bed Camper SS-1500 is their soft sided model that comes with an aluminum frame, 55″ one-piece door, Congoleum® Flooring, hard wood cabinets, LED interior lighting, solar prep, and a dry bath. It has a dinette, sink, 2-burner stove, 60×80 innerspring mattress, closet, and storage cabinets.

You can choose to have an A/C, entry step, a Thule roof rack, and electric jacks to make loading and unloading easier. They also offer a Badlands Package for your extreme road adventures that can take you off the grid. But with their 100 watt solar panel with charge controller and second battery tray, you won’t have any problem and you can still enjoy creature comforts even in the wilderness.
 
Host Campers Mammoth

Host Campers Mammoth

Key Specifications:

  • Floor Length: 136″
  • Dry Weight: 3,955 lbs
  • Type: triple slide out, side entry

What you’ll like about it:

Host campers have crafted a masterpiece with the Mammoth using ultralite 100% aluminum structure, complete fiberglass exterior, vacuum bonded foam insulated walls, floor, and ceiling, and a one piece TPO roof. With this quality workmanship, you know that it’s built to last.

Mammoth has 3 slide outs making the unit very spacious to live in. Standard features include a large 3-burner range, an 8 cu ft refrigerator, a Fantastic fan, cabinets with raised panel doors, and an extended cab with a queen-sized bed and bedspread.

It comes with a 25,000 BTU furnace to keep you warm during the cold nights in the wilderness. Its skylight roof vents allows you to maximize the light and fresh air coming from the outside. It has an exterior shower, water heater, winterization system, and electric jacks with wireless remote.

You can choose between Pecan and Smoky River for the color of your interiors. You can also opt to have a rear slide out with sofa and kitchen wall slide out as well as other appliances to upgrade your unit.

The mammoth’s amazing features make you feel right at home even if you’re in the middle of nowhere.

So, which is the best truck camper out there?

Truth be told, it was hard to choose only 10 truck campers! There are a lot of other great truck campers in the market today but we just narrowed it down to give you an idea of the comforts and luxuries that they offer for such a compact size!

At the end of the day, the best truck camper is the one that suits your travel needs and budget.

The important thing is that you now know that you can enjoy these features wherever you go with your truck camper and that’s a lot of places because truck campers are perfect even for off-road adventures!

How much do truck campers cost?

Before buying the best truck camper, let’s manage your expectations when it comes to the price of a truck camper.

Retail prices of truck campers vary according to the manufacturer, quality of materials used, and features that they offer. The price ranges from $8,000 to about $70,000.

When you buy from the low-end of the price scale, these are as basic as you can get, no frills added, and don’t expect that it’s made from high-quality materials.

Those at the high-end of the price scale come with longer length and more features to make your RV travel more comfortable.
 
campers have bathrooms

Do truck campers have bathrooms?

Some people think that since truck campers are compact in size, there would be no more room for a bathroom. Some buyers are particular with campers having their own toilet and shower because they find it uncomfortable to go potty among the bushes when nature calls.

As shown above, there are lots of models of truck campers that offer these amenities on board.

So the answer to this question is: Yes, they can have wet baths, dry baths, or toilet-only rooms. It all depends on the model that you will choose, how you want to maximize the space in your truck camper, and the level of convenience that you want.

What do you want: A wet bath, a dry bath, or a toilet-only room?

A dry bath which has a separate shower area from the toilet and sink would take up more interior space compared to a wet bath wherein the entire bathroom is contained inside the same stall. You also have more room to move around in a wet bath.

In a wet bath, everything gets wet when you take a shower and you need to dry the area when you’re done. You have to use a squeegee to push the water into the drain and a towel to wipe off any amount of remaining water inside the bathroom. This can be quite an inconvenience that you don’t have to deal with when you have a dry bath.Choosing the toilet-only option would take up the least amount of interior space among the 3 options since they don’t have a shower and sink.

When you choose to have a bathroom in your truck camper, you also have to consider the added weight of the plumbing and water tanks required for you to be able to use the facilities.

Some models offer a built-in cassette toilet or porta-potti storage so that you can have the convenience of having a toilet without using too much space and adding significant weight to the camper.

What types of toilets are available for truck campers?

As for the toilets, there are 3 types that you can choose from: the RV flush toilet, a cassette toilet, or a porta-potti.

The RV flush toilet functions much like our residential toilets. It gets its water from the RV’s fresh water tank then flushes the waste into the black tank.

A cassette toilet has a removable black tank that can be dumped into a residential toilet system when it’s already full.
backpack truck bed

Can you sleep in a truck camper off the truck?

Many people are curious if they can sleep in a truck camper off the truck.

The short answer to this question is: Yes, you can.

You have to keep in mind that floor support is critical so you have to use your jacks. But it is also recommended to take off the weight on the jacks so as to extend their life as they bear the weight of your truck camper when it’s off the truck. Some use sawhorses as an added support to your jacks or anything that would add support to the floor of your camper.

Truck campers are off the truck when they’re on display in RV shows and people get in and out to try the bed. There are even some people who use their truck campers as a guest room in their houses when needed.

But it also depends on the truck camper as some may not fare as well as the others. Best to check with the manufacturer or dealer to know if its okay to use the truck camper for sleeping when it’s off the truck.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of buying a truck camper?

Since we’re helping you decide if a truck camper is right for you, we’ll tell you the things you have to consider when buying one.

The Pros

These are the top reasons that make these rigs the perfect choice.

Very Versatile

Truck campers are the most versatile RVs you’ll find in the market today. With it sitting at the bed of your truck, you can have your fishing boat, ATV, snowmobile and other camping gears in tow.

Also, when you unload your truck camper from your pickup truck, you can use your truck for going around town, taking your boat to the lake, or collecting firewood.

When you’re not RVing, it’s easy to store and you can use your pickup truck for your daily drive to work. That’s how versatile the truck camper is for you!

Very driveable

It’s so simple and easy to drive a truck camper since it’s like just you’re driving a regular pickup truck. No need to worry about a trailer that’s hitched behind you. Some are also uncomfortable driving a large motorhome on the road.

This also means that it’s easy to park your RV since you won’t take up too much space.  

Easy to Maneuver

Due to the truck camper’s compact size and the pickup truck’s small turning radius, it’s easier for you to maneuver your RV to keep you out of trouble especially when you encounter steep and narrow roads.

You can take them off-road!

If your adventure style involves exploring off the beaten path, then you should consider a truck camper. With its two-axle configuration and compact size, it can take you to places where large RVs can’t go – steep hills, narrow forests, boondocking – you can do all these with a truck camper! You can go wherever you want to go.

Fuel Efficiency

You get better fuel economy with a truck camper since they’re smaller and lighter compared to other RVs. This means big savings on gas when you go on your RV trip!

Low Maintenance

The truck camper is probably the cheapest RV to maintain. This is because it doesn’t have its own engine and you don’t tow it around when you go on your trip thus there is less wear and tear on the parts of the RV itself. All you need to maintain is your pickup truck.

Lower Fees Involved

Most states don’t require you to register your truck camper because these are technically classified as cargo and not RV. This means you’ll save up on registration and annual license fees.

It is also cheaper to insure a truck camper than other RVs. Some companies offer premiums with full coverage at only $20 a month!

The Cons

Before we get carried away with exactly how great these rigs are, we’ll also tell you about the disadvantages of owning a truck camper to give you a complete picture.

They require a big truck!

Truck campers are only for those who have strong and powerful trucks since they are heavy to put at the bed of your truck.

Take note of how much weight your truck can carry because there are some underpowered trucks that have given in to the weight of these truck campers. Don’t be a victim of purchasing a truck camper that’s too heavy for your pickup truck.

Understand that if you go for the lighter weight truck campers, you might have to sacrifice some comforts like having a bathroom and less storage space.  

Limited Space and Storage

Most truck campers can comfortably accommodate a maximum of 3 people. So, if you’re planning to have an RV trip with the whole family and your furry friend in tow, this might not be suited for you.

There is also limited space for storage since this will take up valuable living space inside your camper.  
This is best suited for the solo traveler or couples who enjoy going on road trips together.

Can be Difficult to Load and Unload

Since you have to load your truck camper into the bed of your truck, it can be quite difficult to load and unload when you’re alone.

Some truck campers have easy-to-use jack systems for loading and unloading but these come with a price.

Our Verdict

Truck campers are great for solo travelers, couples, or a small family who want to enjoy the outdoors during the weekend or for a short period of time.

If you’re planning to be a full-time RVer, this might not be the perfect RV for you since you have to sacrifice some comforts and living space in exchange for its compact size.

What makes truck campers so great is that they give you the freedom to explore the outdoors because you’re using a vehicle that’s easy to drive and maneuver. Aside from this, you get to enjoy the features that other RVs offer.

We understand that truck campers are not for everyone. This rig is built for those who have powerful pickup trucks and who enjoy going on off-road adventures while enjoying some creature comforts along the way. If you are among them, we’re hoping this article helps you decide which is the best truck camper for you.

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