Five of the Best Expandable Camper Trailers for 2018

Derrek Sigler
by Derrek Sigler
If you are looking for an affordable way to get into the RV market and want something lightweight for towing, check out this list of the best expandable camper trailers for 2018.

There are several solid reasons to get an expandable camper trailer, also known as a pop-up. They are often lighter in weight and can be pulled behind smaller vehicles such as cars, minivans, and small SUVs. They are also very mobile, allowing them to be towed into compact areas, making them a great option for back-country RVing. For those that demand a little bit more, you can even find specific expandable campers built for more extreme conditions. Another reason to consider an expandable, and probably the most popular reason people buy them, is cost. Not only are expandable camper trailers usually cheaper to buy initially, but the cost of maintaining them is rather low, making them a great and economical choice for getting out and enjoying the great outdoors.

To help you find on your way, we’ve put together a list of five of the best expandable camper trailers available for 2018.

2018 Forest River Rockwood Extreme Sports Package 1970ES

Two main things set the Forest River Rockwood Extreme Sports Package apart from other pop-up campers. First, it has 15-inch Mud Rover tires mounted to aluminum wheels with specialized fender flairs and a full 12 inches of ground clearance underneath. This gives the Extreme serious go-anywhere ability with a tall profile and tires that clear out mud and grime quickly. Secondly, the Extreme models have Pro Rac Systems crossbars mounted from the factory that allow for cargo carrying, such as bike and kayak racks and more. This model has two slide out beds, a convertible dinette and a sofa sleeper. It weighs in at just over 2,000 pounds total, easily towable behind a Jeep or SUV.

2018 Jayco Jay Sport 12SC

Some of the best reasons to go with the Jayco Jay Sport have to do with things you can’t see right away, but will certainly appreciate later. It starts with a powder-coated frame for durability and rust prevention. Then the bed frames are made from two-piece aluminum and ½-inch decking that can support up to 1,050 pounds. The roof is made from durable fiberglass and is slightly domed to aid in water runoff. The canvas fabric is made to with tough UV-resistant materials and is guaranteed durable in in -20-degrees F. The 12SC has a king on one end and a queen at the other. It has a slideout for the dinette too, for additional space and there is an option for a shower stall. It sleeps up to 8 and has plenty of storage room as well, helping earn its place on our list of the best expandable camper trailers for 2018.

2018 Coachmen Viking Hardside V12RBST

Hardside expandable campers may seem a little odd to those not used to them, but any doubts to the popularity of them can be erased by trying to buy one at an RV show. They are often the first ones to end up with a sold sign on the door. These campers have some cool benefits. They set up extremely fast and are very durable, and tolerant of bad weather. Yes, they are limited on space, but for a couple, or a small family, they work exceptionally well. The Coachmen Viking Hardside has a flip-up bed on one side with storage underneath. There is a dinette on the other side that converts for sleeping and the basics of a kitchen area and storage in the middle. There is a large storage box on the outside that is removable.

2018 Forest River Flagstaff MAC / LTD 228D

The MAC series from Flagstaff is all about value and options. The 228D adds in a lot of features into a bigger expandable camper package while keeping the costs down, making camping more accessible. It has a slide out dinette area for additional room and a gaucho sofa bed. There is an option to swapping out a storage cabinet for a toilet-shower cassette. The whole unit weighs in at 2,439 pounds and it folds out to an impressive 23 feet, 10 inches in length. The roof is reinforced for a steel air conditioning unit for added durability. This is a great option for those in the market for one of the best expandable camper trailers.

2018 Coachmen Clipper Express 9.0

Sometimes simple is really best. For a single person, or a couple, that doesn’t need or want the added space required for a kitchen area, the Coachmen Clipper Express 9.0 is a great option. It is as simple as it can get for an expandable trailer, with a bed and some cabinet/storage space. The 54-inch by 74-inch bed is plenty beg enough and the best part is the weight savings. The whole camper weighs in at just over 1,200 pounds and the tongue weight is a mere 73 pounds. Even a compact car can tow the Clipper. Now there’s simply no excuse not to get out and explore.