Hardcore campers want to hike to their sites with everything on their backs. But the larger market is the casual camper, someone who might not prefer to pitch a tent, and/or who wants the convenience of “car camping;” families with small children, people with mobility issues or folks who don’t want to fully “rough it,” for instance.
For this market there’s Luno, a company that enables you to turn your car into the tent. After studying a variety of car interiors, the company designed a range of air mattresses that cover some 1,800 different vehicle makes, whether hatchback or SUV (a selector at the link above lets you match the mattress to your car).
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Unlike ordinary air mattresses, these are shaped to fit around wheel wells, giving you more surface area for your shoulders (you’re meant to sleep with your head towards the front of the car). They self-inflate; you just plug the compressor into the cigarette lighter, and can release air to dial it down to your softness setting using a valve.
The truly clever bit of design that set these apart are the Base Extenders, which “fill the footwells of backseats to provide additional head support and increase mattress length by a whopping 15 inches.” This means that, assuming your car interior is long enough, the mattresses will accommodate someone up to 6’3″ (1.9m).
Although the mattresses look like two separate units in the photos, they’re actually one unit, with a split down the middle. Each side inflates independently, the idea being that each sleeper might prefer a different firmness, and that one sleeper won’t feel the mattress rock every time the other sleeper shifts.
To keep your stuff close at hand, Luno’s also designed a seatback organizer where you can store a water bottle, your phone, a headlamp et cetera.
It’s also got a small detachable pouch you can use for toiletries and such.
With people suffering from cabin fever and the pandemic still leaving travel uncertain, I suspect car camping is going to rise in popularity. You don’t have to worry about the cleanliness of the lodging, and there’s less of a barrier to entry than with tent camping. I think Luno is going to do well.