How many of you have bought a motorcycle jacket on the pretense that it is waterproof, to only get caught short in a downpour and wound up soaked through?
I know I am not alone in this.
The problem is that there are different degrees of what the word ‘waterproof’ means in the motorcycle clothing industry.
Some jackets can resist a summer shower and others are ready for 8 hours in a storm and yet manufacturers label them both as ‘waterproof’.
Have no fear, I have got you covered with some of the best waterproof motorcycle jackets currently available, with all the info you need to determine just how waterproof they are.
Let’s get to it.
Here are our top waterproof motorcycle jackets.
Best Waterproof Motorcycle Jackets Reviewed
Klim Kodiak Gore-Tex Textile Jacket
The Klim Kodiak is one of my favourite jackets to make the list, despite the fact it is very expensive.
The Kodiak is a laminated jacket with a Gore-Tex Pro Shell construction.
Not only is the jacket guaranteed to be waterproof but Klim have fitted CE Level 2 D30 armour into the shoulders, elbow and back, giving you that step up in terms of protection.
There are plenty of vents in the Kodiak jacket, chest, side, back, bicep and forearm vents and it is very lightweight.
The jacket makes for one that you can genuinely ride in all year as a result.
You even get leather overlays on the shoulders and elbows for added abrasion resistance and cool points!
Sizing is accurate, so despite being pricey the Kodiak is a worthy investment, built to a high standard and of a quality that should see you dry and protected for many years riding.
Klim offers one of the most comprehensive guarantees among motorcycle clothing manufacturers.
There is a lifetime warranty on all of Klim’s Gore-Tex jackets, which is for the practical lifetime of the jacket, it will guarantee to keep you dry.
Should there be any defects or workmanship issues Klim will replace or repair the item.
The Klim Protection Guarantee is also in place should you be involved in an accident in your Klim gear within 5 years of purchase, they will replace the damaged item free of charge.
Of course terms and conditions apply, check it all out on Klim.
- Laminate Gore-Tex Pro Shell construction
- All year jacket
- D30 CE Level 2 armour at shoulders, elbows and back
- Great Klim warranty and guarantee
- Stylish and lightweight
Oxford Mondial Advanced Textile Jacket
The Mondial jacket from Oxford surprised me when it hit the market, simply because we hadn’t seen a laminate waterproof jacket at such a low price until that point.
It is a technically advanced jacket with all the features of a top of the range jacket at a very accessible price point for all riders.
It uses Oxford’s own Dry2Dry waterproof membrane which is laminated to the outer nylon construction and this provides an impenetrable shield that water just hits and slides off.
Water-resistant YKK zips are used throughout including on the vents which provide adequate airflow when things get a bit warm.
The jacket is very lightweight and doesn’t feel like a heavy touring jacket but it is more than equipped to take you wherever you want to go.
- Laminated waterproof membrane
- CE certified Level 1 shoulder and elbow protectors
- Removable Thermal Liner
- Spot on fitment and sizing
- No back protector included just a pocket
Richa Cyclone Gore-Tex Textile Jacket
The Richa Cyclone jacket is designed to be an all year jacket that will see you through the Summer right into the Winter.
Equipped with a Gore-Tex liner the jacket is guaranteed to be waterproof and breathable.
You get a removable thermal liner that is easy to remove and fit back in. The thermal liner is really excellent at keeping you warm in the winter and it is very plush and comfortable.
D30 armour throughout will keep you protected, allowing you a full range of movement and comfort while riding, but then stepping up to the job to protect in the event of an accident.
Everything about the Cyclone jacket screams quality and there are various velcro tabs on the waist and cuffs etc so that you make those small adjustments to find the best fit.
Despite having large vents with waterproof closures and exhaust vents at the rear the jacket is heavy duty and may feel a bit too warm in the Summer.
- CE A rating
- Gore-Tex lining
- D30 CE Level 1 shoulder and elbow protection
- D30 CE Level 1 back protector included
- Plenty of fit adjustments can be made
- Bit warm for a Summer jacket
Rukka Nivala Gore-Tex Textile Jacket
Rukka has been leading the pack when it comes to producing waterproof motorcycle clothing for many years.
They know a thing or two about constructing quality riding kits.
You get a high-tech Aramid and Cordura fibre combination with a Gore-Tex 3 layer membrane laminated to the outer layer.
The jacket is not only equipped to be waterproof but comes with a full D30 protection package including chest, back, shoulder and elbow protectors.
Inside the Nivala is a completely separate warm thermal jacket that can be removed.
A soft neoprene collar provides comfort and on top sits an elastic Gore-Tex collar that can also be removed.
I tried the ladies Rukka Suki jacket and I couldn’t believe just how comfortable it was, it felt like I was wrapped up in a quilt with the softest sheets.
Ventilation points are dotted around the jacket and YKK-Aqua zips ensure that water won’t get in through the zips.
The only downside to the Nivala is that it does feel a bit heavy and bulky, which is great in the cold but not so great when things warm up.
- D30 protection package
- Gore-Tex laminate jacket
- 6 year warranty
- Plenty of fitment adjustments
Dainese Carve Master 2 Gore-Tex Textile Jacket
Dainese employs a Gore-Tex membrane for the Carve Master 2 which does the job at keeping water at bay.
The outer material is also water-resistant so the jacket goes out of the way to keep you nice and dry.
You get CE Level 1 shoulder and elbow protection but no back protector, this has to be purchased separately and is best suited to be a Dainese branded G1 or G2.
The Gore-Tex liner in this jacket works brilliantly in the cold with the thermal liner attached.
However, in the summer with the thermal liner removed, you may notice the liner sticking to you and this can be uncomfortable after a while.
Dainese are known for producing quality kit, and so there is no question about the quality of the Carve Master 2, the jacket is comfortable and feels premium all round.
One thing that does stand out as with most Dainese products is they do come up a bit small, so it is best to order a size up than what you would normally wear.
- Quality construction
- Gore-Tex Liner
- CE Level 1 shoulder and elbow protection
- Drop liner not laminated
- No back protector included
- Small sizing
Really there is just one specific thing you want to know when buying a waterproof motorcycle jacket.
Just how waterproof is it?
After that there are just a few extra things you should consider to ensure you get the most suitable jacket for your needs.
Here are my top tips for buying a waterproof motorcycle jacket:
Level and Type of Waterproofing
For many many years waterproof liners in motorcycle jackets were the only way that a jacket could be waterproof.
Essentially the waterproof fabric liner is dropped in between the outer layer of the jacket and the inner thermal/comfort liner.
The drop liner would then keep the water from getting through to your under layers.
The biggest flaw is that the water still penetrates the jacket, your outer pockets still get wet, and inevitably water will find its way to get through that drop liner in one of the crevices or even through the front zip.
You will find the jacket gets damp and as a result quite heavy.
Another downside to a drop liner is that there is no ventilation or moisture wicking properties.
The waterproof liner keeps your body dry, but you get warm and the sweat has nowhere to go, which can lead to an unpleasant experience.
I had a cheap waterproof jacket when I first started out and after a few hours of riding and a small rain shower, when I took my jacket off I was very warm and very wet, but not from the rain.
Safe to say I binned that jacket pretty quickly.
Gore-Tex works in a slightly different way.
If your jacket has a Gore-Tex drop liner, then what you will find is not only does it keep the water out, but it allows your body to breathe.
The micro-pores allow water vapour (sweat to escape) but will not allow rain water in as the pores are too small.
When working in a motorcycle store, I was only comfortable selling a Gore-Tex jacket to customers for those who wanted confirmation that it would definitely be waterproof.
Gore-Tex is also windproof.
The latest and greatest technology in waterproof clothing is a laminate waterproof membrane.
Some jackets like the Klim Kodiak use a Gore-Tex laminate Pro Shell construction and others like the Oxford Mondial use their own brand waterproof membrane.
Essentially the waterproof membrane is laminated to the outer layer of the jacket.
As a result when water hits the jacket it cannot penetrate any further.
Laminated jackets are the safest bet for a 100% waterproof jacket and up until recently were only ever seen in high end brands ranges.
Just because your focus is on a jacket being waterproof doesn’t mean you should forget about it being protective.
Follow these tips for ensuring you have a protective jacket:
- Check for a CE Rating (with A being the lowest and AAA being the highest)
- CE Level 1 shoulder and elbow protection as a minimum
- Space for a back protector, which you should also pick up at the same time
- Check the material the jacket is made of, it should be constructed of Aramid fibres, Cordura or such like to ensure it will provide abrasion resistance
Thinking about your riding style and how often you will be riding in the rain will help you decide if you need a top end waterproof jacket or not.
If you are commuting all year round regardless of the weather, then something like the Rukka Nivala jacket might be a worthy investment.
However, if you are mainly a Summer day rider and run the risk of getting caught short on occasion then a jacket with a drop liner may be enough.
You get what you pay for
When it comes to waterproof motorcycle jackets, you truly do get what you pay for in terms of quality.
Expecting a jacket that is less than £100 to be truly waterproof would be unwise.
It may have a level of water resistance and protect you in a quick shower, but after any length of time you are going to get wet.
Good quality is more expensive, but in the long run a Gore-Tex or laminate jacket is going to earn it’s worth and keep you warm and dry for many riding miles. Buying cheap generally means buying twice!
There you have it, the best waterproof motorcycle jackets on the market.
Without a doubt the Klim Kodiak is my favourite among them, offering an equal amount of practical weather resistance and protection. It may be an investment but it is worth it.
As a budget option the Oxford Mondial jacket is a close second, offering a laminate waterproof jacket at an exceptional price, it simply obliterates any competition within the same price range.
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