Alpinestars Core Jacket Review
Since Alpinestars released its first motocross boot in 1965 out of the Northern Italy town of Asolo, innovation has been at the forefront. This was quickly noticed by the top racers, such as MX legend Roger De Coster, who became the brand’s first ambassador. Fast-forward to 2017, and there are many ambassadors across various riding styles, from three-time MotoGP Champion Jorge Lorenzo to Dakar Champion Toby Price.
While designing its apparel, Alpinestars, the name deriving from the Alpine star perennial flower in Italy, has always relied on racing input from these ambassadors to evolve its apparel’s comfort and safety. These elements are evident in Alpinestars sportiest gear, such as my go-to two-piece suit for spirited sport rides—the Alpinestars Motegi 2—which has provided years of comfort and safety.
These elements are not only found in the race-driven apparel, though; they are also found across all Alpinestars products, including the Alpinestars Core leather jacket. The Alpinestars Core is not a full race cut; rather, it was created for sporty street riding. The jacket, designed from full-grain 1.1mm leather, features multiple textile accordion-stretch panels on the chest, back, underarms, elbows and waist for comfort.
These flex zones allow for comfort in various positions, whether leaning off the bike during aggressive rides or more upright in a sport-touring position. The leather took about three 100-mile rides to truly break in, so things initially feel a bit stiff. The beauty of a non-race cut design also surfaces off the bike; the Alpinestars Core jacket provides comfort similar to a non-riding leather coat while walking.
Further comfort arrives from some light padding that also serves as protection on the chest, torso, back and lower back areas where stiff leather can sometimes cause comfort issues. As for the neck area, the Core features a mesh interior and soft-leather collar; it didn’t irritate my skin while riding like other jackets with leather collars.
The Core features YKK zippers that so far have never jammed–another issue I deal with constantly while testing jackets. The cuffs feature the typical zipper/snap closure, though no adjustments. I typically wore short-cuff gloves without issue, and gauntlet gloves easily slipped over the cuffs’ openings.
The Alpinestars Core is a three-season jacket, but I used it mostly for temps in the 80s or lower due to the small area of perforation on the chest and arms. This is not an issue for a Northeast rider; for those in hotter climates, Alpinestars offers a Core Airflow model with additional perforation (for the same price).
The full-sleeve liner provides warmth when temps dropped to lower 60s, and with the correct base layers, it would continue to provide warmth into the lower 50s–perfect for the spring/fall seasons here on the East Coast.
Protection is provided by the external Dynamic Friction Shield (DFS) protectors on the shoulders and elbows, which also assist in sliding in case of crash. Internally, the shoulders and elbows use removable CE-certified protection that didn’t hamper any movement or comfort.
The back also features snaps for Alpinestars’ CE level 2-certified Nucleon KR-R Back Protector, which we strongly recommend over the standard non-CE back pad. Additionally, the jacket is prepped for Nucleon chest protection for maximum safety.
Other features are typically of modern quality motorcycle jackets, including a full-circumference zipper for pant attachment, Velcro straps for waist adjustment, and reflective detailing for improved rider visibility.
One definition of “core” is the central most part of something. Following a few months of riding with the Alpinestars Core jacket, it has become a central part of my apparel choice for lighter sport riding and sport touring, especially during the spring and fall months.
Alpinestars Core Jacket Fast Facts:
- Colors: Black; Black/White
- Sizes: 46-64, Euro
- Alpinestars Core Jacket Price: $590 MSRP