Motorcycle Jacket Type Buyer's Guide: https://www.ridersdomain.com/magazine/motorcycle-buyers-guide/jackets/
Although there’s no shortage of options, when you break it down there are two types of jackets: those made from leather and those that aren’t.
Of course, it’s a little more complicated than that, as within those two generalizations you have coats made for urban riding, carving up twisty roads, and ones for logging miles on a cruiser or V-Twin. There’s also touring, and adventure-specific options, to help you stay comfortable while carrying the essentials.
So we’re dividing these in three straightforward categories: leather, textile, and mesh.
As the name implies, leather jackets are made from, you guessed it, cowhide. Generally, leather provides the highest abrasion protection, as well as warmth in chilly weather. They stand the test of time and are the one piece of gear that usually looks better with age.
Thickness, construction, and features vary upon riding discipline and intended use. For instance, sport jackets have a heavier duty armored construction than a cruiser or more fashionable casual piece, which can sacrifice a degree of impact protection for style and comfort.
Textile jackets are made from a combination of synthetic or natural fabric. However, occasionally they employ animal hide in certain areas. Compared to leather, textile moto coats are generally more versatile and can be worn in a wider array of climates, including rain, hot, and at times, cold weather.
Because of the construction they typically allow for more movement and are easier to clean. They do give up a degree of abrasion resistance to leather. Material thickness varies by its denier rating, with the higher number equaling thicker construction.
Mesh textile jackets are designed for warmer, summertime temperatures. They trade protection for convenience and airflow keeping your body cool when the Mercury flirts with the triple digits.
Most jackets feature removable zip-in liners that add versatility and comfort in inclement weather. Many include some form of shoulder and elbow protection, which more often than not is removable. The construction and certification vary based on model, with Europe’s CE certification the most popular standard. Many also offer basic back protection with higher-end specialty armor available for an up-charge.
The fit is another important consideration, and one closely associated with Riding Group.
Touring and ADV jackets can have a longer cut past the waist. Pre-curved sport jackets possess an aggressive fit ideal for a tuck riding position, while cruiser coats employ a more relaxed cut. The latest wave of urban jackets further blend the lines of fashion and protection that are well-suited to an urban lifestyle.
Certain brands fit a more specific body shapes which is also important to remember.
Want to know more? Visit our jacket buyer’s guide or leave us a comment. See you on the road.
Follow us, and see what we’re up to behind the scenes: