Royal Enfield GT Textile Riding Jacket Test
Along with the launch of its Ace Cafe Racer retro-styled cafe motorcycle, the India-based Royal Enfield also debuted a period-style riding jacking that incorporates current technology and comfort.
I donned this jacket while testing the Ace Cafe during its launch and while commuting. These trial periods allowed me to evaluate the jacket’s capabilities and features versus the claims made in the company’s specifications.
For starters, the stylish retro look with the large Royal Enfield emblem on the back is eye catching, especially in the red with black trim. Additionally, the stitching and seam work shows attention to quality, and using heavy duty zippers gives the rider confidence that the jacket will be used for a lot of riding.
Though featuring a retro look, the Royal Enfield Textile Riding Jacket incorporates current protection technology. It arrives with shoulder and elbow protectors that are soft and flexible, and a back foam pad; all of this results in a comfortable fit.
Additionally, the piping and large emblem are embedded with reflective material to provide solid performing visibility in low-light conditions. However, unlike most jackets with double snaps on the collar, the Royal Enfield jacket only has a single snap collar.
As for comfort, the air flow is adequate for speeds above 35 mph; otherwise, it is a bit stuffy. The comfortable upper temperature limit without the removable liner is around 80 degrees, and the comfortable lower temperature limit with the liner is about 45 degrees.
The only ventilation control available is the sleeve cuffs have zippers to pull open and allow air to flow in up through to the arms.
The jacket’s inner lining appears to provide a level of rain protection, but how much I have not been able to determine due to the lack of rain in my part of the country. I would hazard a guess that the protection is adequate for commuting to and from work in moderate rain, but would be lacking for any rain fall heavier than that.
One note of caution about the jacket’s sizing and actual fit – the scale that is used appears to be based on European sizes and not U.S. sizes. As a reference point, my six-foot frame means I wear a Large for other brands’ jackets, but I wound up with a size 2XL for the Royal Enfield jacket.
Overall, this jacket is good for general use on relatively short commute rides, point-to-point errand runs, and weekend group rides with other Royal Enfield owners. And the list price of $139.99 is a pretty good value for the quality and style.
Royal Enfield GT Textile Highlights:
• Outer shell is 100% nylon 600 Denier, highly abrasion resistant
• CE approved EN 1621 Level 1 removable shoulder and elbow protectors
• Foam back pad
• High visibility reflective piping on front and back
• High-visibility reflective Royal Enfield brand on back
• Interior shell has one utility pocket
• Removable winter liner with two utility pockets
• Heavy-duty YKK zippers
• Rapid air flow mesh panels on body, sleeves and sides
• Interior liner is waterproof and breathable
• Capable to be worn for all seasons
• Sizes in M, L, XL, 2XL, 3XL, 4XL
• Retail price: $139.99
For additional information, visit Royal Enfield.
Photography by Kevin Wing