A Gore-Tex jacket may cost more initially, but it’s the only one guaranteed to keep you dry, and it’s hard to put a price on that. Our guide to five of the best Gore-Tex jackets will help you find your next wet-weather riding companion.
The latest version of Rukka's Kalix uses a Gore-Tex Pro laminated outer to shrug off rain at first contact, and the simplicity and effectiveness is very popular with owners The first 27 customer ratings all gave a perfect five stars. It's a two-layer laminate shell so it's slightly more flexible than the three-layer material used on more expensive Rukka jackets. The collar is lower and the cuffs are simpler than on range-topping Rukka jackets, which is a plus for riders who want more flexibility. There's no thermal lining, but owners generally like having the option to put their own layer underneath.
The Cyclone is the only jacket in this list to have a simpler and cheaper drop liner rather than a laminated outer. But it impressed Sportsbikeshop customers, who gave it an average of 4.9 stars from the first 87 reviews. One customer told how it held up incredibly during a rainy tour of Scotland, keeping him totally dry throughout. Others praised the near-perfect fit, which is adjustable using straps on each side of the waist and arms. Reviewers also liked the flexible D3O armour, saying it was discreet and comfortable to wear.
The waterproofing provided by Richa’s Atlantic Gore-Tex jacket has gone down a storm with owners, who universally say it’s kept them dry. The thermal liner is also effective if the owners’ comments are anything to go by as they’ve praised the way the jacket keeps them warm when the temperature falls. The venting for use in warm weather also picks up praise from very pleased owners, who’ve given 25 five-star ratings from the first 26 reviews.
Named after California’s late, lamented motocross circuit, the Carlsbad mixes off-road flexibility with road practicality. Its two-layer Gore-Tex membrane is laminated to the outer, giving optimum waterproofing performance and direct-to-body venting without delivering the bulk that comes with a three-layer Gore jacket. There’s a full set of D3O CE Level 2 armour, including a back insert, and customers are very happy with the top-notch standard. Those with longer arms especially like the fit, which also draws its inspiration from off-road riding - so consider going down a size from your usual if you like a snug fit.
Rukka’s second-generation Nivala jacket is one step from the top of their range and has one of the highest specs of any bike jacket. It has a three-layer Gore-Tex membrane laminated to the outer shell for top-grade waterproofing, a full set of top-line armour that includes back and chest protection and a cosy down warmth liner that can be worn separately. Riders who spend top money for bike kit are very demanding, but only one of the first 14 customers to review this jacket has given anything other than five stars - and that rider deducted stars for the jacket’s collar being too high for his taste.