A few weeks back, we discussed the virtues of a flatbed truck camper and used the OEV Hudson Bay as a prime example of what luxury truck camping can be. The article featured OEV’s hard-sided Hudson Bay option, but OEV has another model - the pop-top.

So that got us thinking…


Which Hudson Bay truck camper is best? The answer to this question depends on the needs of the end-user, of course. Let’s have a peek at both models so you can decide if a hard-sided version or a pop-top version is best for you!

General Hudson Bay Truck Camper Features

Dinette area in an OEV Hudson Bay hard-sided camper

Let’s start with a general overview of features common to both the hard-sided and pop-top Hudson Bay truck campers so you have a better idea of what OEV offers as base amenities.

Both models offer highly durable materials that give you the peace of mind that you can use your camper in all sorts of conditions and settings without concern that you’ll damage it. For example, both campers are made with powder-coated aluminum extrusions and feature structural powder-coated aluminum interior cabinets. Additionally, OEV incorporates high-traffic-grade Lonseal vinyl flooring in both campers, which can withstand a lot of use, water, snow, mud, and so forth. 

Interior materials of the OEV Hudson Bay pop-top camper

The water and fuel systems are the same in both Hudson Bay truck camper versions, too. You get a 38-gallon fresh water tank and a 12-volt pump for extended stays off-grid. A Truma Aquago hot water heater gives you access to hot water for doing dishes, washing hands, and taking showers. Speaking of showers, both models offer interior shower space and exterior Sagiv shower connections. You’ll find 20-pound propane tanks and aluminum propane cabinets in both models as well.

The electrical systems in the hard-sided and pop-top Hudson Bay truck campers share the same basic features. For example, you get a 220-watt roof-mounted solar panel, a Victron 100-30 MPPT smart solar controller, and a Victron Blue Smart IP22 charger in both models. Likewise, you’ll find a Victron Orion TR Smart 12-30 DC/DC charger in both units, as well as LED interior and exterior lighting.


Dinette and acrylic window inside an OEV Hudson Bay hard-sided camper

Seating in both truck campers is the same with an east-west dinette that also folds down into a bed. The four-inch-thick medium-density foam cushions provide a comfortable place to sit and eat dinner and also offer support for a good night’s rest. The marine-grade fabric used to cover the cushions is both durable and easy to clean - just what you want in your adventure rig!


Queen-size mattress in an OEV Hudson Bay pop-top camper

Other features common to the hard-sided and pop-top versions of this camper include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • An aluminum storage closet with adjustable shelves
  • A pullout drawer for a toilet (toilet not included)
  • A screen door
  • A stainless steel cooktop with a flush-mount glass top
  • A stainless steel sink with a flush-mount glass top
  • A 164-liter fridge/freezer
  • Room to sleep four people

Both models also feature Truma vario heating with a thermostat and a multi-speed roof vent, complete with a roller blind. In other words, both models offer a very long list of common features that make camping and adventuring a comfortable, functional experience.

Both campers offer some of the same optional features, too:

  • An additional 220w solar panel
  • Single burner induction and single burner propane cooktop
  • Cartridge toilet
  • Additional multi-speed fan
  • Under bed storage
  • Upgraded Victron electronics (e.g., a 2000w or 3000w Multi-Plus inverter)

One of the best options, though, is the 12-volt DC-powered Dometic rooftop Nomadic cooling air conditioner. Here in Texas, air conditioning is a must for spring, summer, and fall, and this Dometic unit will do the trick for keeping the hard-sided Hudson Bay model nice and cool. Air conditioning is an available option on the pop-top model as well, though the pop-top with air conditioning also requires the auto lift option.

The combination of our truck upfitting capabilities and this long list of amenities and options makes the Hudson Bay a prime choice if you’re looking for a fully-featured, do-it-all truck camper. In either case, you can enjoy a climate-controlled, comfortable interior space while benefitting from the maneuverability of having a truck bed camper. Nice!

But, these models have some slightly different features that can sway you one way or another. Let’s take a peek at some of the major features of both options.

Hard-Sided Hudson Bay Truck Camper Features

One of the most important features of the hard-sided Hudson Bay truck camper is its hard walls. The wall panels offer greater than R8 insulation, making it an ideal option for all-season camping. In fact, the OEV Gen 4 composite panels mentioned earlier are a full 1.5 inches thick, which provides better protection against the heat of the summer and the chill of the winter.

The hard-sided version further boasts six dual-pane acrylic windows, each with a built-in shade and screen. There’s also a marine escape hatch with a shade up top, which gives you plenty of natural light inside the camper and can block out light when you don’t want it.

With internal dimensions of 153” L x 78” W x 77.5” H, you get plenty of space, too. However, it’s important to note that the camper’s roof angles down in front, so the headroom above the bed area isn’t as much as you get in the pop-top version.

Given the hard roof on this option, you get a little more storage space. Specifically, OEV outfits this version of the Hudson Bay with upper cabinets above the galley for extra food, cooking utensils, and the like. Additionally, you get upper cabinets above the dinette, where you can keep tableware out of the way yet easy to access.

Furthermore, this rig has a lower cabinet where you’ll find the water tank tucked away nice and neat. That’s not the only feature that’s out of sight, out of mind - the toilet slide is under the passenger-side dinette seat, so you can add the toilet of your choice and have easy access to it as well.

All this is wrapped up in a camper weighing 2,218 pounds dry. Needless to say, a ¾-ton or 1-ton truck is needed for this bad boy.

Pop-Top Hudson Bay Truck Camper Features


If you opt for the pop-top version of the Overland Explorer Vehicle Hudson Bay truck camper, you’ll get fewer acrylic side windows, but natural light and ventilation won’t be a problem with the nearly 360 degrees of windows in the pop-up roof. With two windows on each side and windows at the front and back, you’ll have a great view of your surroundings!

The front bed area has the same standard four-inch-thick queen mattress as the hard-sided Hudson Bay. However, the pop-top version offers a nice option: you can upgrade your sleeping experience with an extension to accommodate a king-size bed. You can lounge in improved comfort while your family or friends rack out on the dinette or optional gurney bunk (shown below).

Obviously, one of the primary differences between the pop-top and hard-sided Hudson Bay models are the different roof systems. While both models have nearly identical interior dimensions (the pop-top is 153” L x 78” W x 77” H when opened), the pop-top has the advantage of a flat roof over the front bed. It might be a small difference, but without the angled roof, it feels like you have a lot more usable space.

The insulative properties of the pop-top Hudson Bay are a little different from its hard-sided cousin, too. Where the hard-sided version has an R-value of 8 or more, the pop-top version’s composite lower panels have an R-value of 8 or less. Meanwhile, the fire-rated insulated four-layer soft walls in the pop-top roof offer an R-value of 4 or less.

Still, despite these differences, the pop-top model is a three-season camping option. Speaking of options, this Hudson Bay camper has an integrated mount for adding your choice of awning and it’s ready for an OEV roof rack for carrying additional gear.

Likewise, the pop-top Hudson Bay offers other optional features, such as an auto roof lifting system for quick setup. You can also add a rear ladder on the 6.75-foot pop-top model, various Molle rack and ladder combinations, camper jacks, and tie-downs. 

The pop-top Hudson Bay truck camper is significantly lighter than the hard-sided version. At 1,780 pounds dry, it’s well over four hundred pounds lighter. Nevertheless, you still need a ¾-ton or 1-ton truck to accommodate this camper.

Which Camper is Better for Your Needs?

When it comes down to it, the hard-sided and pop-top Hudson Bay campers offer many of the same amenities. The question really comes down to whether the heavier but more insulative hard-sided version better suits your needs or if the lighter, lower-profile pop-top version is suited more for your style of adventuring.

In either case, you’ll get a camper that’s built to last, comfortable, and functional. And with the added bonus of being removable, you can outfit your flatbed with a high-quality camper and still retain the functionality of your truck for gear hauling and towing purposes.

If you’re still unsure of which Hudson Bay truck camper is right for you, don’t hesitate to drop by our facility just off I-20 in Abilene to discuss these options further. You can also call and chat with one of our experts at 1-888-323-5902 or send us a message. No matter how you get in touch, we’re here to help you make your camping and overlanding better. That’s why BTR - pronounced better - is in our name!