Reviewed by: Tony Carter for 10,000+ miles RRP: Tech Road Gore-Tex jacket, £649.99; Tech Road Gore-Tex pants, £499.99
Okay, let’s tackle the big issue here before we get into the nitty-gritty of this long-term test of the Alpinestars Tech Road Gore-Tex two-piece – the price. At £1149.98 for the jacket and pants together, the suit is a serious amount of cash to spend on riding kit. You can get an awful lot of other suits on the market for considerably less moolah.
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So, in light of that, the single most pressing question about this riding kit has to be: is it worth the cash? I’m going to say yes. Here’s why I think that. After riding around in this stuff for a year, in ALL types of weather and on ALL types of motorcycles, in a variety of countries, the Tech Road suit has yet to let in a single drop of water. And I’ve ridden through some hellish conditions.
Ride with the thermal lining in place and it’s as warm and snug as riding gear gets. Its fully customisable fit means there’s nowhere on the body that the Tech Road doesn’t feel like it’s not right for you as the rider. There’s also some really nice touches like a fully waterproof chest pocket (with natty bright red zip for easy identification) that is ideal for a phone or wallet, a detachable wrap-around windproof neck warmer, huge outer pockets with secure zips and big storm flaps to keep the worst weather out.
Five internal waterproof pockets, chest and back pad compartments, HiViz stripes and logos and CE-certified elbow and shoulder protection in the jacket (and knee and shin protection in the pants) feel comfortable and ooze quality. Should you fall off in the suit – something I’ve yet to do – then Alpinestars say that the Armacor panels in key areas all over the suit give exceptional abrasion and tear resistance in key impact areas.
The pants and jacket can be zipped together, but to be honest with you I’ve not ridden with the two connected, opting to run with them separate and the braces supplied fitted to the pants, which I find gives me more options when taking the jacket off during stops and loo breaks. Yeah I know, braces! Me! I’ve changed over the years on MSL…
The whole shell on both parts is made from Gore-Tex Pro Shell fabric, so there’s no question of rain getting through – and while that might sound like some ad campaign speak, I can genuinely vouch for that claim in reality. Overall, the jacket and trousers are shaped in a similar way to leathers (although not as severe a cut, naturally) and that’s really helpful in negating material bunching up around arms, legs and your middle when you’re on the bike.
It looks classy in black, the only colour the suit comes in, and performs better than anything else I’ve ever tried. Yes, it is expensive but then this is top-end stuff. There are more pricey suits out there, but I’d be amazed if anything performs better than the Tech Road suit. Heartily recommended, I’ve given it 9 out of ten in the ratings purely because I’ve not yet crashed in the suit. Should that happen then I’ll write up a report on how the suit stands up to a tumble and I’ll revisit the rating at that time. Until then, it’s 9 from me.
More info: www.alpinestars.com