Mitsubishi trucks don’t top the list when I dream about buying an adventure vehicle. At least, they didn’t until I learned the brand will kit out its 2021 L200 pickup with an optional inflatable rooftop tent and a bed-based cooking and storage system.
I know what you’re thinking, but this isn’t a concept vehicle. And that inflatable rooftop tent is not a prototype. Mitsubishi partnered with GentleTent to offer two tent options. Both tents inflate with a small, portable air compressor or the same hand pump you’d use to inflate a standup paddleboard.
One of the tents is a two-person inflatable called the GT Roof. It weighs around 55 pounds and fits 99% of cars, according to GentleTent’s website. It packs small and looks basic.
Meanwhile, the second option is the 59.5-pound GT Pickup. Designed for 2.5 people, it looks like a truck camper when inflated, with the bed over the cab, and a tent that’s tall enough to stand up in over the truck bed. Plus, this configuration creates a weatherproof space for cooking, eating, chilling, and more.
Mitsubishi L200, GentleTent Inflatable Camper
Before you get all excited, hold your horses. Sadly, Mitsubishi’s add-ons will hit only the German market — for now. But American distributors should take note.
If you’re not familiar, GentleTent’s inflatable rooftop tents might remind you of NEMO’s first tents, which were also inflatable and hit the market in 2007. While those tents established NEMO as a brand, the design never gained much traction in the U.S. market.
But applying that technology to a rooftop tent makes sense. It lowers the weight of the tent and gives GentleTent license to get creative with its design. GentleTent even has massive options that will sleep five to six people on top of an 18-passenger van (it also comes with various awnings).
To complement the rooftop accommodations, Mitsubishi also announced a slide-out truck-bed kitchen. This setup boasts a Primus portable gas stove, collapsible sink basin, submersible water pump, 12 L of water storage, a 12V charging port, and a drawer for utensils.
Complete the truck conversion with Mitsubishi’s driver-side cabinet, fridge, outdoor shower, and solar charging hardware. All of it tucks inside Mitsubishi’s lockable cap for travel.
In an era when we’re social distancing and truck campers, adventure vans, and rooftop sleeping options are sold out for the next year or longer, America definitely presents a market opportunity for a system like this.
And a modular system like this allows buyers to forgo DIYing an entire vehicle, which appeals to me. Sure, I have aspirations of doing my own conversion, but so far I haven’t had the time.
The 2021 Mitsubishi L200 Triton starts at about $30,000 and runs up to around $45,000 depending on options. The tents and kitchen gadgets would add at least another $7,000 to that. But unless you’re paying in euros, it’s a moot point.
The GentleTent inflatables, however, are available in the U.S. You may not be able to find them yet at your local outdoor store, but you can order one at gentletentusa.com.