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NEMO Wagontop 6 Review

This tent is large, luxurious, and has a distinctly cool look, but doesn't fare as well in the wind
NEMO Wagontop 6
Credit: NEMO Equipment
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Price:  $700 List | Check Price at REI
Compare prices at 3 resellers
Pros:  Extremely large, great windows, multiple rooms
Cons:  Not the best weather protection, hard to pitch, expensive
Manufacturer:   NEMO Equipment
By Rob Gaedtke ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Apr 19, 2022
Our Editors independently research, test, and rate the best products. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Learn more
72
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#10 of 14
  • Space and Comfort - 35% 8.0
  • Weather Resistance - 25% 6.0
  • Ease of Use - 15% 5.0
  • Family Friendliness - 15% 9.0
  • Quality - 10% 8.0

Our Verdict

The NEMO Wagontop 6 is a cool-looking, massive tent with some fancy features. It sports a vestibule and a two-room main interior. Panoramic side windows and an extra-wide window above the door make this tent feel extra classy inside, and it has the largest interior space of any option in our lineup. However, this is a fair-weather tent not built to handle much more than some light wind and rain. It is also extremely difficult to pitch and has some questionable design decisions. Overall, this tent has both big pluses and big minuses, landing it lower in our review.

Editor's Note: We updated this review for the NEMO Wagontop 6 on April 19, 2022, with an unbiased assessment of value and a closer look at other directly comparable products.

Compare to Similar Products

 
NEMO Wagontop 6
This Product
NEMO Wagontop 6
Awards  Top Pick Award Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award Best Buy Award 
Price Check Price at REI
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$809 List$445.99 at Amazon
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$699 List
$698.95 at Amazon
$269.95 at REI
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Star Rating
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Pros Extremely large, great windows, multiple roomsQuality materials, solid protection, good ventilation, loads of featuresSpacious, great layout, durable, very family friendly, high valueMassive floorspace, 22 pockets, tall ceiling, room divider, awning capableSpacious, easy to pitch, great views, inexpensive
Cons Not the best weather protection, hard to pitch, expensiveSmaller vestibule, very expensiveNot the easiest to pitch, only one door, odd bagSmall vestibule, longer pitch time, awning poles not includedFiberglass poles, small pockets, lack of ventilation with the rainfly on
Bottom Line This tent is large, luxurious, and has a distinctly cool look, but doesn't fare as well in the windOne of the most well thought out tents in our line up, but you’ll have to pay for itThis tent has one of the best uses of space we have ever seen, a great choice for families or campers with lots of gearIf you are looking for a high-quality, family friendly 8-person tent, look no furtherWherever this tent falls short in quality, it makes up for it in size, features, and overall value
Rating Categories NEMO Wagontop 6 Marmot Torreya 6 The North Face Wawo... Marmot Limestone 8 Kelty Wireless 6
Space and Comfort (35%)
8.0
9.0
9.0
9.0
7.0
Weather Resistance (25%)
6.0
8.0
8.0
8.0
7.0
Ease of Use (15%)
5.0
8.0
7.0
7.0
8.0
Family Friendliness (15%)
9.0
9.0
9.0
9.0
8.0
Quality (10%)
8.0
9.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
Specs NEMO Wagontop 6 Marmot Torreya 6 The North Face Wawo... Marmot Limestone 8 Kelty Wireless 6
Weight 20.1 lbs 22.3 lbs 21.9 lbs 21.2 lbs 17.2 lbs
Max Inside Height 6' 8" 6' 8" 6' 6" 6' 5" 6' 4"
Floor Dimensions 11' 8" x 8' 4" 11' .5" x 8' 10.5" 10' x 8' 6" 8' 4" x 15' 7" 9' 10" x 8' 10"
Floor Area 97.3 sq ft 93.4 sq ft 85 sq ft 130.2 sq ft 86.9 sq ft
Seasons 3-season 3-season 3-season 3-season 3-season
Windows 4 4 2 Mesh top Mesh top
Pockets 6 19 6 22 6
Number of Doors 1 2 3 2 2
Room Divider Yes No Yes Yes No
Vestibules 1 2 2 2 2
Vestibule Area (total) 26.9 sq ft 32.5 sq ft 44.7 sq ft 32 sq ft 28 sq ft
Packed Size 12" x 27" 26" x 12" x 12" 9.5" x 16.5" x 25.5" 28.3" x 16.6" x 11.7" 27" x 8" x 8"
Floor Materials 300D PU-coated polyester Polyester, Taffeta, 107g/sqm 150D polyester 150D PU coated nylon 68D poly 1800mm
Main Tent Materials 75D PU-coated polyester Polyester, Tafferta, 60g/sqm 150D polyester 40D polyester no-see-um mesh 68D poly 1200mm, 40D No-see-um mesh
Rainfly Materials 75D PeU polyester Polyester, Pipstop, 75g/sqm 75D polyester 68D PU coated polyester 68D poly 1200mm
Number of Poles 4 4 4 5 3
Pole Material Aluminum DAC aluminum 14 mm aluminum DAC DA17 aluminum 14.5mm Fiberglass
Extras Storage/mudroom Gear loops across entire front entrance, awning poles included Internal dry lines, hang loops, Velcro lantern loop Room separator Pole pockets for easy setup

Our Analysis and Test Results

The height and overall footprint of the Wagontop are the biggest in our test group, with a max headroom of 6' 8", a total of 97.3 sq ft inside, and 26.9 sq ft of vestibule space. You will truly feel small inside this tent. But let's take a closer look and see why it didn't take away any awards.

Performance Comparison


NEMO Wagontop 6 camping tent - a side profile of the behemoth tent known as the wagontop.
A side profile of the behemoth tent known as the Wagontop.
Credit: Rob Gaedtke

Space and Comfort


This is the biggest, tallest tent in our lineup. When it comes to square footage space, this tent has 125 sq ft covered. However, when it comes to usable space, things get smaller. The main tent has a separator that splits the room in two — a great feature in theory.

NEMO Wagontop 6 camping tent - the massive four-section interior of the wagontop 6.
The massive four-section interior of the Wagontop 6.
Credit: Rob Gaedtke

One side is the presidential suite and fits a queen-sized air mattress with room to spare. The second room is the economy suite and barely fits a single twin. This area may be better suited as a mudroom when the vestibule isn't on. The Wagontop also comes with only six storage pockets, and because of the size of this tent, they are not in the best locations.

NEMO Wagontop 6 camping tent - good weather and a big family are two ingredients required for this...
Good weather and a big family are two ingredients required for this tent to shine.
Credit: Rob Gaedtke

Weather Resistance


With the windows down and a light breeze blowing, the Wagontop performs great. But crank up the wind, add some rain, and forget about being happy in this tent. This 6' 8" x 11' 8" sail will not be staying on the ground without some serious additional guyline support and a bit of a miracle.

NEMO Wagontop 6 camping tent - a good breeze will flow through the wagontop as long as you keep the...
A good breeze will flow through the Wagontop as long as you keep the front vestibule open.
Credit: Rob Gaedtke

Another major flaw in this metric for the Wagontop is the window setup. Long panoramic windows secured by three clips are easy to access for both you and the rain. The long window above the back door has the same style covering, but because this is nearly a seven-foot-tall tent, your kids will need a boost to open it. However, the additional front door vestibule/rainfly does protect the opening well, and the latest update fixes the gap found in the previous versions.

NEMO Wagontop 6 camping tent - panoramic views from the nemo wagontop 6 make for very happy campers.
Panoramic views from the NEMO Wagontop 6 make for very happy campers.
Credit: Rob Gaedtke

Ease of Use


Nothing about this tent is easy. Setup took 15 min 30 seconds and required both directions and a marriage counselor (we're kidding… mostly). Two massive dual-hubbed poles cross each other to create the main structure. They assemble into the grommets of the tent base but are not color-coded and, because of the size, are unwieldy to manage. Once you figure out what orientation they should go, the rest of the tent uses clips to connect to the pole. No big deal, except that this is an almost 7' tall tent, so getting the top clips was difficult for a 5' 9" person.

We had to stop to check the directions at more than one juncture.
We had to stop to check the directions at more than one juncture.
Glad we had two people for this!
Glad we had two people for this!
Getting close to my max reach and I still have higher clips to go!
Getting close to my max reach and I still have higher clips to go!

Our next frustration came from installing the added vestibule/rainfly. This was not as simple as it should have been, and thanks to a manufacturing defect, we had to stake out one side of the vestibule using a clip instead of the nice ring the other side had. And then there is the teardown. Though much faster than the setup, the poles are so big they fly out of the grommets and take up a massive amount of space. It would be unfair not to mention that the more you set up any tent — even a complicated one — the easier it will get for you and your crew.

NEMO Wagontop 6 camping tent - "dude, that isn't right" was a common phrase said when setting up...
"Dude, that isn't right" was a common phrase said when setting up this tent. Also, probably worse phrases too.
Credit: Rob Gaedtke

Family Friendliness


When it comes to size, height, and available space, this tent is absolutely fit for family living. It was a top scorer in this metric and was built with this audience in mind. It easily fits four people and is highly animal friendly with its thick flooring material and large vestibule. Should some light rainfall, your family could more than function in the Wagontop. The fixed room separator allows for privacy and could function as a second room, but probably only for one.

NEMO Wagontop 6 camping tent - just look at all that square footage!
Just look at all that square footage!
Credit: Rob Gaedtke

Durability


The floor of the Wagontop is made out of an impressive 300-denier fabric, 100% thicker than the next closest tent. The sidewalls are made from 75D PeU polyester, and the poles are hubbed 14.5mm thick aluminum. A fairly impressive makeup compared to the others in our review. However, while not as important, they did skimp on the bag. It's made from far cheaper, thin fabric, a tiny zipper, and some weak handles.

NEMO Wagontop 6 camping tent - we are pretty sure this should have been a ring and not a clip, but...
We are pretty sure this should have been a ring and not a clip, but this technique worked.
Credit: Rob Gaedtke

Should You Buy the NEMO Wagontop 6?


The Wagontop 6 is quite pricey. While it provides a lot of space and nice features, there are enough small issues to make it hard to call this a good value. The questionable construction, poor weather features, and frustrating assembly with the high price tag give pause. If you find it on sale, camp in milder locations, and are tall, it could be a great durable shelter.

What Other Camping Tents Should You Consider?


If you are in the market for a large 6-person tent with high ceilings, the NEMO Wagontop 6 could be a good choice — though there are other options in our review that we like more. The award-winning Marmot Halo 6 is slightly cheaper, offers nearly identical floor space and a 6' 4" ceiling, and is a significant improvement in terms of weather resistance and ease of use. If the price tag on these tents is hard to swallow, the Kelty Wireless 6 still offers 87 sq ft of usable floor space at a fraction of the price.

Rob Gaedtke

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