One reason to choose a Coleman tent would be: They consistently outsell the four manufactures combined, shown below in google trends. The top twenty best selling tents on Amazon often contain half made by Coleman.
Considering the popularity of the brand I thought it worthwhile to take a look at all of the models side by side. Coleman's website had 28 tents for sale, http://www.coleman.com/tents when I first started to research more about them in 2013. The company started to gain interest in 2006 and now have a considerable following. Coleman have added other models during the last few years, without retiring all the original favorites.
A few of the 28 tents are too small to be considered family tents and a few more looked like they are last seasons. That left 20 of them to review, the smallest are for three people, the largest are designed for ten.
3 Instant Tents
6 Dome Tents, Sundome and Evanston
Modified-Dome Tents, Montana, Hooligan and Evanston Screened
3 Cabin Tents, Weathermaster Models
Coleman's first Instant Tent appeared in 2011 It sets up in under a minute and breaks down in less! Watch this video to see just how easy it is to set up. Prices start from around $130 info_outline for the 4 person tent increasing significantly for the 8 person version Square in shape, it offers a lot of headroom over other styles. All three occupy places among the best selling tents on Amazon. All have great ratings at the time of writing this. Users are very impressed with "just how quick and easy they are to set up and break down". Of the three, the smallest is very small, when compared to the other 19 Coleman tents reviewed. It is the 2nd smallest in square footage at just 56 sq feet. Center height is not much better at 4' 11". Users love it and it probably has a place as a two person tent, or for a family with a very small child.
The Sundome is Coleman's entry-level small tent. The 4 person tent is affordably priced at $55.04 info_outline and the largest for 6 people is just $30.46 info_outline extra. Smaller sizes do exist. With excellent ratings for both, they represent great value for money. Both are ideal for first time campers not wanting to spend a lot of money. Of the two, the 6 person gets my vote. A few extra dollars gets you considerably more space. The 6 person elite sundome pictured below is the deluxe version of the standard sundome model.
The Montana is very popular, with the 8 person tent often occupying a spot in the best selling camping tents on Amazon. With a decent overall score of 84% Campers are loving it. The 6 person tent also has some of the best ratings of all 19 tents reviewed, also with an excellent overall score.
Considering the larger one is only an extra $0.00 info_outline With an extra 28 sq ft and 6" of headroom. It is an easy choice which one to go for. The 8 person tent also has a hinged door and is discounted 48% to $119.00 info_outline making it excellent value for money at the current price.
With more than 1500 reviews and an overall score of 84% the huge Coleman Red Canyon 17-foot by 10-foot tent "pictured below with the included fly sheet" needs mentioning, even though I'm unable to find it on Coleman's website. It is a very cheap tent when compared with other models like the Montana above which is only 2/3 the size and costs about the same.
Reading through some of the less favorable reviews you can quickly see that this is an ideal tent for those with a very large family, "possibly going camping in the summer for the first time, who do not wish to spend a whole lot of money" The Red Canyon is not as good as a lot of the other tents on this page, which is quite normal considering it's price, only $131.75 info_outline. If you do not need a tent this large, stick with one of the smaller tents like the Montana above or the Evanston below, which are only an extra, few dollars. It is available in two colors red and navy. I have a suspicion after reading the reviews that the red one is the older model and the navy one is a newer version that is not quite as good. Due to it's "price to size" the Red Canyon is best for summer camping during warmer months.
Unlike other models the Evanston has two different types, one has an extra-screened porch area. The extra-screened area is a big plus. Price wise the difference is only an extra $10 or so and you get extra footage 20 sq ft on the 6 person tent and 36 sq ft with the 8 person tent The larger screened tent gets some of the best rating of all Coleman tents. The smaller non-screened gets one of the worst ratings. The only thing that is not as good with the screened version is center height. Both of the screened tents 4" less headroom.
In the video below you can get a good feel for the space one gets with the Evanston 8
The Octagon 98 is Coleman's largest cabin tent. Designed for 8 people, 169 sq. feet and 6'10" headroom makes it a decent sized tent. This is one of the few instances that I would say, "smaller is not always worse" This tent offers a lot of the extras slightly bigger tents do not come with.
Both the slightly smaller Weathermaster 10 and 6 person versions with porch also offer outstanding value. It is one of the most popular family size tents on Amazon, the WeatherMaster 6 looks attractive mainly because of the screened porch area, currently discounted 40% to just $167.75 info_outline it is worth considering if your looking for a large cabin tent.
I have devoted a whole page to the WeatherMaster Model highliting the pros and cons.
This model only just made it into the page, because it is more of a backpacking tent. The Hooligan 4-person tent is not the smallest tent of Coleman's, it is bigger than the Instant 4 and the same size as the 4 person Sundome. For hiking or cycling in a small group it makes a good choice that will not break the bank. It is a reasonably priced option at $73.99 info_outline compared to other backpacking tents.
Like the Hooligan above this could easily be used by a couple of people who have a bias towards the outdoors and enjoy cycling or using a motorbike. It is not too heavy at 14lbs, if both cyclists are sharing the weight. It represents great value for money, when you see it is priced at $111.71 info_outline Coleman introduced this tent at the end of 2014, since then it has received good reviews and ratings, with no reports of any major problems.
Ready to use straight out of the box, makes the Cold Springs 4 a great tent for cyclists or a couple with a motorbike. Included in the price is the detachable porch to put your bike under shown in the picture below. Along with a rainfly and the illumine reflective guy lines, that seem to come with all Coleman's newer models.
Four of the above models come in an Elite version. They are easy to identify when browsing because they are all dark blue in color unlike any other Coleman tents. These tents are very similar to the standard versions. They do though come with a few extras, hinged doors and built in lighting for all four models. Aside that each model has pros and cons. The additional qualities of the elite tents can be seen in the video below. Elite tents only come in one single size for each model all are different models they are listed below.
Elite Sundome 6
The Elite version of the Sundome 6 costs $74.49 info_outline more than the standard model which is just $85.50 info_outline Making it 87% more expensive. Center height is the same at 6 foot. The Elite does offer an extra 20 sq. feet though. It's overall score at 84% is good. If you are looking for a medium sized quality tent, in the same price range many others could also fit the bill. Check out some other 6 Person Tents from different manufactures.
Elite Evanston 8
Except for the hinged door the Elite Evanston Screened 8 appears to lag behind or equal the base model in all areas. Less standing room in the Elite is just weird compared with other Coleman Elite tents. Square footage is the same in both at 144 sq. feet. Ratings on this Elite Evanston are some of the worst for all Coleman tents. Considering the screened 8 person version is $55.48 info_outline cheaper it would be hard to choose this tent based on the data.
Elite Montana 8
The Montana Elite only costs a little more than the base model priced at $119.00 info_outline Standing room is again the same at 6 foot 2 inches in both. You gain an extra 16 sq. feet with the Elite. The standard and elite version have near identical overall scores. All in all the Montana Elite is worth spending an extra few bucks on.
Elite Weathermaster 6
The base model and Elite Version are identical in all areas, both get good ratings. As the standard Weathermaster 6 with porch has a MSRP of $299 it makes sense in this case to pay the extra $90 to have the Elite Version. I personally like tents with enclosed porches, the extra space is always a plus, the idea of using it as an extra room for the kids, on dry summers nights seals the deal for me. If your looking for a quality tent, with options for a little more privacy, this tent could work, discounted currently to $252.98 info_outline on Amazon "the last time I checked, Aug 17th, 2017" it a safe simple choice for a quality tent.
Coleman tents make an excellent choice for first time campers. They offer great value for money 2-3 season tents that have been tried and tested by thousands of users, over many years.
You can compare all of the Coleman tents side by side in an Interactive Comparison Table