I’ll admit it. I’m a sucker for a good-looking leather jacket, especially one in a dark brown color. Next on my list, because of Southern California’s mostly warm weather riding, is good venting. Equally as vital, I want my apparel to be top-of-the-line in quality with fine materials, perfect stitching, purposeful design, and excellent proportions. Alpinestars’ Caliber jacket ticks all the boxes.
Weighing in at 7+ pounds, it’s a heavy jacket constructed from 1.0-1.2mm leather that I know will gain a superb patina with wear. To supply comfort and fit, Alpinestars builds stretch panels from the side of the chest, plus under the arms to below the elbows on the inside of the sleeves. There are leather stretch panels on the rear shoulders, waist, and elbows to give me all the range of motion I need.
The collar is short and microfiber-lined to avoid any chafing around the neck. The sleeves are pre-curved, making the Alpinestars Caliber jacket extremely comfortable right off the rack.
Cargo space is good, with two external zippered slash pockets and one internal waterproof pocket. The jacket is mesh-lined and includes a removable thermal liner. There’s also a waist zipper to allow attachment to compatible motorcycle riding pants.
The Caliber includes CE-certified Level 1 impact protection for the shoulders and elbows, with polymer shoulder sliders if dragging elbows isn’t enough for you.
The jacket does not include any back or chest protection, so you’ll need to upgrade. It is compatible with Alpinestars Nucleon CE Level 1 chest and back protectors for about another $100. For even more protection, buy this jacket a size larger than usual and add Alpinestars’ Tech-Air 5 autonomous airbag system for $700.
Let’s talk about venting and temperature management. The Alpinestars Caliber jacket has a few square inches of tiny perforations on the two embossed panels over both sides of the chest and back, small perforated areas behind the triceps, the two chest vents, and the stretch panels under the arms to provide cooling. On the edge of both sides of the chest are a pair of six-inch zippers that reveal mesh lining that ventilates into the chest area.
My experience with stretch panels from many brands is that they don’t seem to pass much air. Only in cold weather does one really feel the airflow. The chest vents do a good job, yet the leather is heavy and gets a bit warm, even if I leave the zippered sleeve ends open.
Although the Alpinestars Caliber jacket is not my choice for a day riding in temperatures over 85 degrees, it is heavenly in the Spring and Fall here in SoCal, as well as on warmer winter days with the liner installed.
With the ability to wear the jacket most of the year, the good-looking and comfortable Alpinestars Caliber leather jacket is now one of my favorites.
Action photography by Don Williams
Alpinestars Caliber Jacket Fast Facts
- Sizes: 48-60
- Color: Brown
- Protection: CE Level 1 shoulder and elbow (back and chest optional)
Alpinestars Caliber Jacket Price: $570 MSRP