Review: Gazelle T3 Hub Tent

Review: Gazelle T3 Hub Tent

You may recall our not-so-glowing review of the Shiftpod Mini. 

When considering a replacement, the obvious choice was a Gazelle tent. You can’t scroll #overland for more than 2 seconds without hitting a photo of a Gazelle tent. And for good reason: their design addresses most of my complaints with the Shiftpod without sacrificing any of the benefits:

  • Plenty of ventilation. Compared to the Shiftpod’s paltry little portholes, the Gazelle has two windows on each side (including the doors) and a fully mesh roof. Opening it up to a breeze is, well…(you get it).

  • Normal tent materials. The Gazelle might get warm on a sunny day, but no more than any other heavy-duty nylon tent. The Shiftpod, on the other hand, turns into an EZ Bake oven in the sunshine.

  • No tripping hazard. In spite of having nearly the exact same design, for some reason I don’t find myself tripping over the tent stake that’s outside the door.

  • Oh right… TWO DOORS.

  • The same two-minutes-up, two-minutes-down setup process.

  • My only annoyance that the Gazelle doesn’t address is the shape of the door.

The only gripe I hear from others around the Gazelle is the price. Yes, it cost more than your Coleman tent. But coming from the backpacking world where a good tent will easily run $500+, Gazelle’s prices look like a steal to me.

Ok, I’m sold! But which one?

Funny question. We originally picked up a very lightly used T4. It was palatial. It was easily bordering on too much space for two people, IMO. And the last stone for us was the length when broken down. It does fit lengthwise in the space behind the front row if you have the second row seats folded down. But one other thing we actually did like about the Shiftpod was that it fit snugly in the footwell behind the front seats of our GX470. Which happens to be the ideal spot for a tent in our normal packing routine.

So we did the next logical thing and sold the T4 (at no loss) and grabbed a T3 on sale direct from Gazelle. It’s perfect.

With our 2-person air mattress in the T3, we have a good ~16” on either side of our sleep zone which is perfect for tossing a duffle bag, shoes, water bottles, a dog, or whatever. And packed, the T3 is only a couple of inches longer than the Shiftpod which means that it still drops in right behind the front row. For our needs (2 + dog) and given our camping style, the T3 is the perfect solution for us. But I’ll admit, every once in a while I still think about the palatial T4.

So final recommendation:

  • If you need the tent to sleep 3-4 people cozily, get the T4.

  • If you need to sleep 2+ but you like to camp with cots and the whole works, get the T4.

  • If you need to sleep 2+ cozily with a little room to spread out, get the T3.

  • If you like the size of a T4 but couldn’t possibly live in a palace that didn’t have a porch, grab the T4 Plus.

  • If you’re the Brady Bunch, the T8 is about your only bet.

What about the Overland Editions? Depends on where you’re storing your tent. If it’s on the roof and might see inclement weather, then yes. The waterproof bag is enough to sway that question. However, if you’re going to store it inside the vehicle, the OE is a hard pass.

Disclaimer: No, this is not a sponsored post. Just reppin’ a tent that I am thoroughly impressed by.

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