Racing season is coming soon, and it’s time to start thinking about what you need to bring to events/races. Fuel tanks - check. Tools - check. Spare parts and tires - check. Sun and rain protection for pit and service crew members - uh, wait. Not check.
Although being out there on race day is fun, having to suffer through driving rain or glaring sun isn’t. RacingJunk has taken a look at vehicle sunshades/umbrellas from a number of companies to help you decide which one is right for you and your team/crew.
The Lanmodo Car Tent Is for More than Just Racing
Image courtesy Lanmodo
The Lanmodo Car Tent is a fully automatic protective cover for your car or truck. It has a big strong suction cup that attaches to your car’s roof. A push of a button on the included remote opens the Car Tent in about 20 seconds. Lanmodo offers many option levels, making this product one of the most versatile on this list. The tent portion itself comes in two sizes: 3.5 meters x 2.1 meters and 4.8 x 2.3. The fabric is extra tough - Lanmodo tested it by throwing a brick on it from four stories up, with no damage done to the tent or car underneath. Lanmodo Brand Specialist Nancy Zhu also told RacingJunk that the Car Tent is shown to lower the interior temperature of vehicles in the sun by 30 degrees, because it creates an air gap between the sun and the car’s interior.
Plenty of Options
Image courtesy Lanmodo
Lanmodo offers options that connect to the main tent in order to expand the coverage so off-road rally racing chase crews can set it up on the chase vehicle. By attaching one or more flies, they can service your vehicle out of the elements, including the wind, something other products can’t say. There’s even a provision for an actual camping tent with extra sun/rain fly. Oh, and the silver coating on the underside works great as an outdoor projection screen. It’s a great option for any racer who wants something that can be used for more than just race day.
Reliancer Automatic and Semi-Automatic Car Tents
Image courtesy Reliancer
Reliancer has two different car tent products, one automatic and one semi-automatic. The automatic model has a remote that allows you to install and open the car tent within 30 seconds, while the semi-automatic version has no remote. Both are made of durable polyester/PU material and measure 4.meters X 2.1 meters.
Both also have a provision that allows you to use the car tent as a sunshade at the beach or while picnicking. The company also claims major interior temperature reductions when the product is used as a sunshade, although they don’t post how much of a reduction you’re likely to see.
YEEGE Car Sun Shade Cover
Image courtesy YEEGE
The YEEGE Car Sun Shade Cover is the lowest-priced car tent product on this list and is also the smallest, at 3 meters by 2.2 meters. Made of nylon, it is also most likely the least durable of the products on this list. The company advertises that although it is not automatic, it can be raised in about 30 seconds and taken down in 20. An interior temperature reduction can be expected, according to the company. Although intended for use as a car sun, shade for when you’re waiting to pick someone up or to keep the car cool while you’re in the store, the use of tent poles and stakes can transform it into an open-sided service pavilion for racers.
Mynew Car Foldable Umbrella Sunshade
Image Courtesy Mynew
The Mynew Car Umbrella Sunshade comes with the option to attach to your vehicle by way of a super strong suction cup or go free-standing with the included tripod mount. Used in this fashion, it works great as protection from the elements for your crew. This product measure 2.1 X 4 meters and is manufactured out of “Protective Cloth.”
Image courtesy Ultimate Awning
Ultimate Awning offers trailer awnings with what they call the “quickest set-up in the industry.” Their patent pending Cam Lock quick connects for “when your time is valuable.” Their awnings have no pins, cords or straps to pull to set up or take down. This makes them ideal for road service vehicles in off-road and rally racing.
Unlike the others on this list, all of their awnings are custom-made - you’re not limited to a specific size or sizes. I spoke with Miles Koolmeister from UA and was told that every awning they make is made to the specific requirements of each customer. He also said that they have provisions for mounting off truck boxes, even short (in height, not length) ones. No cookie-cutter products here.
If you already have a service tent/awning, let us know where you got it and what you think of it in the comments below.
Mike's love of cars began in the early 1970's when his father started taking him to his Chevron service station. He's done pretty much everything in the automotive aftermarket from gas station island attendant, parts counter, mechanic, and new and used sales. Mike also has experience in the amateur ranks of many of racing's sanctioning bodies.
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