femkes Rooftop Tents

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  • Amidst the influx of brands elbowing for space in the highly competitive rooftop tent market, one

    company from the Netherlands has carved their own niche during the last 10 years of adventure

    and manages to stay on top: femkes Rooftop Tents. The story began in 2012, when Femke and

    Tim drove to Croatia for their annual holiday. I should point out that neither were new to outdoor

    living at this stage and could already look back on decades of adventure travel. Therefore, it’s

    unsurprising that they were in a position to identify some of the benefits and pitfalls of the popular

    contemporary rooftop dwellings.

    This was at a time when soft-shell tents dominated the market, with most of them still employing

    many features adopted from much earlier generation products. Hard-shell rooftop tents had been

    around for a while, but had yet to make a significant impact on the market. So, it was more of a

    gut feeling than anything else that led Femke to disregard popular demand and focus on

    developing hard-shell tents more adept at fulfilling her own needs.

    Femke was working in advertising but, even though she enjoyed her job, she felt the industry was

    becoming more superficial and it was time to change direction professionally. The thought of

    spending more time outdoors and travelling further afield certainly fuelled her ideas regarding a

    new tent business, and she embraced the challenge by setting out her first design.





    The first prototype arrived: a blue tent with a fibreglass clamshell. The concept was good

    except for the fibreglass, which didn’t fulfil Femke’s expectations in regard to recycling.



    The initial design evolved to include improved ventilation and an ABS clamshell was

    specified. The next, sand-coloured, prototype was produced and shipped.



    The first twenty-foot container filled with commercial products arrived in the Netherlands,

    sales were recorded, and a series of tests were completed in hot and cold climates across

    mainland Europe and Scandinavia.



    Just as the company prepared to hit the button for mass production, a new manufacturing

    partner had to be found. This was actually a blessing in disguise, because the new partner

    brought innovative ideas to the table such as modified gas struts which improved user




    The business developed its own dynamic, the hybrid tent design attracted customers, and

    the product range grew to include new designs and colours.



    Demand flew through the roof in response to COVID restrictions and changes in travel

    preferences. By the end of April, sales had completely diminished the stock for the year and new

    container loads were rushed through the factories who were eager to provide support under these

    extraordinary conditions. Demand for hard-shells grew exponentially compared to their soft-shell

    counterparts. Enquiries poured in from across Europe which, in turn, triggered expansion of the

    international distribution network.


    “It was great to see sales skyrocket through online sales, but we missed the personal contact with

    our customers.”



    To celebrate their 10th anniversary, Femke and Tim are introducing their brand-new

    aluminium Khosi family of tents which represents a further improvement on the already widely

    popular checker plate clad ALU-Khosi.


    A noteworthy feature is the ABS shell which has been treated to an upgrade in the form of a

    Raptor coating. Careful attention is paid to surface preparation and priming so that the finished

    product can better withstand temperature fluctuation and the mechanical rigours of driving

    through undergrowth and under overhanging branches. Extensive exposure to extreme real-life

    climatic conditions and SGS testing completed the rigorous development programme.


    Today, femkes Rooftop Tents comprise the largest selection of hybrid tents offered by a single

    brand. Whether for one or two adults, or for families, the range includes many styles of products

    to suit individual requirements and the type of car customers may have—it doesn’t always have to

    be a 4x4.


    Forthcoming events: Abenteuer & Allrad 2024, stand no. T11




    Text by Michael Brailey @overlandeurope