Smittybilt appears to have listened to the feedback about the annex for their Overlander tents. They have formally changed the design of the annex for both of their rooftop tents. This is an introduction to those changes.
In the video below we recap some of the criticisms of the initial annex version and then have a look at each of the latest annex designs.
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Here's The Scoop
We purchased the Smittybilt annex for their Overlander rooftop tent in September of 2016 and have only used it once. That gives a pretty good indication of how much we like it. Evidently, that was one of their initial design versions. You may be interested in our review of that Smittybilt annex.
We posted the review video of the annex on December 27, 2017. Before posting the video review on our YouTube channel, we checked the Smittybilt website to be sure the annex we have matched the one they market on their website - and it did. The picture and information were still the same as they had been when we purchased the annex in 2016.
A couple of oddities of the annex we have are:
- The annex door is behind the ladder, making it awkward to enter the annex.
- The Smittybilt installation instructions for the annex show the tent ladder is supposed to fit inside the annex wall. When setup that way, when closed, the door of the annex covers the ladder. You can't use the tent ladder without opening the annex door.
A number of people commented on our Smittybilt annex review video. Some of them who had purchased their annex more recently said that their annex looks different than ours.
I checked the Smittybilt website every so often to see if new annex information was available. Sure enough when I checked in late January/early February 2018, the entire Overlander tent page was updated. There are now new photos and information about both of their Overlander tents and their accessories.
Smittybilt sells two Overlander tents.
- The smaller - Standard Overlander tent, #2783. This is the one we have.
- They also offer a larger Overlander XL tent, #2883.
It it clear that Smittybilt listened to the feedback about their initial tent annexes. They have changed the design - and much for the better.
Their website shows that there are now two annexes; one for their Standard tent, and one for their XL tent.
- The standard tent annex is #2788.
- The annex for the XL tent is #2888.
The vast improvements that appear to be made in the new versions of the annexes are:
- On both, the door to enter the annex is now on the side of the annex. This makes walking into the annex much easier than when the door was behind the ladder.
- The pictures on their website clearly show that the annex for the standard tent is designed so the tent ladder is outside the annex (not inside).
- The annex for the XL tent is way cool. Because of the entrance style of the XL tent, the tent ladder fits inside the annex. This provides complete privacy when moving between the tent and the annex!
- There is now a floor in each annex. The Smittybilt website notes that the annex has a heavy duty, zippered removable floor to keep out the bugs and dirt. Oh happy day!
Will we purchase the latest version of the Smittybilt Annex?
While all the changes in the annex design are welcome, we have no plans on getting the latest version. Why not? For one, we have the rooftop tent on a Morris Mule trailer. The top doors of the trailer open out to the sides like wings and the one on the annex side sticks into the back of the annex quite a bit. The second reason also has to do with our tent being on top of a trailer. The tent is not as high off of the ground as it would be if it were on top of a 4WD vehicle. That means there is a lot of extra annex material that bunches up on the ground.
See the Tents & Annexes on Smittybilt website: https://www.smittybilt.com/overlander_tent_and_awning
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