XENON 2.0 WINDSTOPPER® Soft Shell Jacket
Best winter cycling jacket ever!
I have the luxury of owning all three Gore Xenon thermo jersey, AS jacket, and the softshell jacket here. The softshell jacket makes winter cycling such a pleasure with thicker insulating windstopper softshell material that buffers against the cold, a snug collar to keep out wind from entering your neck, the jacket had no problem shedding off snow and rain all winter, and the fit is sleek and looks fast! I previous had a non-Gore softshell cycling jacket that was windproof but felt like a wet sauna underneath once I got warmed up whereas the Xenon 2.0 softwhell jacket has great breathability with two different types of windstopper material on the jacket with more breathable panels on the sides and back, and side zipper vents that allow additional cooling to the torso.
June 13, 2014
Ideal cold weather jacket
An excellent jacket for cold or windy days. The fit is good on the bike and allows movement without being restrictive or too tight. The arm zips are great for a bit of extra ventilation if things get too warm.
The colour design is good too with white for visibility and a black centre strip on the back which can hide a lot of spray marks when you ride without mudguards in the wet.
May 14, 2014
Expensive ... But Worth It In This Case
I bought this as an end-of-line product (2013) and have to say I really cannot think of a significant way it can be improved: fit, fabric, construction, design, ease-of-care - all superb! It may not be from the higher-end Gore-Tex range but, for someone who has always sweat heavily during heavy exercise (even as a super-fit 20-something triathlete many years hence) it breathes reasonably well too.
Some may not appreciate my choice of a white colour-way ... but it washes really well, is highly visible (without resorting to those risible luminous-coloured gilets which make you resemble a construction worker as opposed to a cyclist!) and it goes with almost anything, for the colour-coordinated amongst you! ;-)
As to its Windstopper capabilities: near faultless! I've cycled with only this jacket and a (Nike running) base-layer and a Sportwool jersey in sub-zero conditions for several hours and remained toasty throughout. Not hot'n'sweaty, juts comfortable. Toes and fingertips were the only extremities to suffer!
It even performed well as an insulting blanket when one of our group fell on ice and broke his collarbone, puncturing his lung in the process!
I suppose the only areas worthy of consideration are:
i) it's slightly under-par black elastic cuff fabric, which is showing signs of wear-and-tear (primarily as a consequence of the nasty Velcro on my Gore Windstopper gloves, to be honest - it's like a combination of inflexible plastic and cardboard and doesn't even close the glove);
ii) the lack of a waterproof/zip-able pocket on the rear. It seems Gore has a problem with certain 'everyday' fabric types as their base-layers are awful in this respect too, pilling and pulling all over the show.
iii) the integral ear warmer - the fabric is too narrow and a little too thin to be effective ... but at least it stows away nicely for emergencies, adding to the padding in the (rear) collar.
Oh, and the usual sizing criticisms - I just don't 'get' this facet of their product development. What does Gore think they're achieving by making entire product portfolios waaaaay too small!? I'm usually a L/XL and had to buy XXL ... again!
But - and here's the crux - I can forgive it all these fairly minimal failings as it is a superb example of what's possible with a little bit of thought ... and mine was 30% off SRP at the time of purchase. Worth every, single penny at that price, despite the criticisms; I might even consider paying full price for something that works this well. OK, maybe not quite full-price! :-)
March 18, 2014