HomeTactical & SurvivalEXØD ‘Air Station Pod-01’ Is a $2,000 Portable, Inflatable Home

EXØD ‘Air Station Pod-01’ Is a $2,000 Portable, Inflatable Home

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The evolution of the tent has been a wild ride. Simple lean-to tents have been discovered dating back to 40,000 BCE. They’ve been used by nomadic tribes, armies, and traveling circuses in the millennia since. Then, in the mid-20th century, the classic “survival tent,” most often used for recreational camping and backpacking today, came into being.

Tent tech has been on a bell-curve trajectory since then. And I’ve got to be honest, things are getting weird. We have multiperson tent hammocks like TentSile that allow you and your family to sleep suspended off the ground. There are inflatable four-season basecamp tents, tents that float, and now, there’s the EXØD Air Station Pod-01.

This thing could have been drawn up by the set designer of the Dune movies. It’s futuristic and sleek, and it looks bigger than a studio apartment in New York City. When it becomes available for general purchase on August 18, it will cost about as much as a month’s rent, too.

But at 18.7 pounds and with a passive 5-minute setup, the Pod-01 could offer a unique shelter option for overlanders and car campers who like to have space.

EXØD Air Station Pod-01: Deployable Housing

The EXØD webpage for the Pod-01 claims that the shelter can accommodate up to four people. The product’s tagline is “Light as air, strong as steel.”

That may be hyperbole. The Air Station Pod-01 is light. It’s less than half the weight of the REI Wonderland four-person tent (35 pounds), and equal in weight to Mountain Hardwear’s Bridger four-person tent (18 pounds) — both of which were featured in GearJunkie’s roundup of the Best Camping Tents.

However, when considering its area of 45 square feet, the Air Station Pod-01 would be one of the smallest tents on that list. With a set-up height of just 5 feet, you cannot stand up within it. And it does not offer any vestibule area like many of those other tents do. So when you weigh in how much interior space this tent offers, it’s actually kind of heavy.

Is It Waterproof?

While the brand does label this tent numerous times as “Four Saisons,” [sic] it never outright says it’s waterproof on the webpage.

However, EXØD indicates that the walls are 70D Polyester Ripstop PU Membrane 1,200mm, and the floors are made from nylon 420D PU Membrane 3,000mm. Both of those textiles are rated as waterproof.

Setup & Layout

According to EXØD, this tent could be set up in 5 minutes. It includes a hand pump with the purchase, but it’s questionable whether you’ll reach full inflation in that time without an electric pump. The tent requires no poles or rainflies. All of the structure is created by air pumped into HT Dacron tubes and guylines that tension the walls.

Two walls roll down completely, and the other two feature round windows. “That creates a real connection with the outside world,” according to EXØD. In tandem with roof vents, that feature also aids with ventilation.

EXØD claims that much of the design of the Air Station Pod-01 was adopted from windsurfing technology. It purports to provide stability in intense winds and durability against saltwater exposure and sand abrasion.

And when you’re done with it, it can be broken down in the same amount of time as setup, and it packs into a duffle carry-case.

A Car Camping Solution?

If you truly dislike using poles to set tents up, an inflatable option like the EXØD Air Station Pod-01 could be for you. With an electric pump, you simply plug in, fill up, and settle down.

It advertises that it can be set up in minutes and offers a spacious living area with windows. Its weight and ability to pack into a backpack-sized duffle make it an interesting car camping and overlanding shelter.

However, it is also an extremely expensive piece of gear. If you preorder it now, it is $1,820.

On the next tier of preorders, the price jumps to $1,940. And if you wait until the “Last Chance” preorder stage, the EXØD Air Station Pod-01 will cost you $2,040. EXØD is a European brand, but the website says it offers worldwide shipping.

This tent is probably aimed at a very small demographic. It isn’t the minimalists or ultralight backpackers, and it certainly isn’t the budget car-campers. But the style, design, and aesthetics of the Air Station Pod-01 may appeal to a certain taste. If you want to look like the slickest, most futuristic camper anywhere you go and can afford the investment, you might be it.

Learn more about this space-aged camping shelter (and place your preorder) on EXØD’s website.

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