Product Review: Alpinestars Solaris textile jacket

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Alpinestars Solaris textile jacket, £158

Time tested: 500 miles/3 months

What’s good? The new-for-2013 Solaris is a textile, general purpose, 'sports' jacket with a more snug  fit than a full-on winter jacket and a higher waistband. I reckon it looks good and is comfy, mostly thanks to a soft, high collar and decent tailoring, on and off bike. It's practical and reasonably weatherproof, too, thanks to its usual zip-out thermal liner (which makes it still warm enough for this time of year), removable elbow/shoulder armour and decent pockets in the right places. Best of all, at around £150, and considering the amount of features it has, it's pretty good value, too. I often find full-on winter textile jackets too cumbersome and overladen with bits and bobs, not to mention too pricey. This gets around all that, looks better and is sufficient for 90% of weather.

What’s not? That ‘90%’ is telling – I’m not completely sold on its waterproofness having ridden through a 30-minute shower and started to feel dampness encroach and pockets leak – but most, in my experience, do that. Nor, with hindsight, was white the best choice: it’s started to look mucky.

Quality rating: 4/5

Value rating: 4/5

 

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Phil West

By Phil West

MCN Contributor and bike tester.