Buyer’s Guide: 5 Leather Motorcycle Riding Jackets For (Around) $500

2016 riding jackets for sport, cruiser or all-around urban riding.

Jacket Buyers Guide
MC Buyer's Guide to $500 leather riding jackets.©Motorcyclist
Alpinestars GP-R
Alpinestars GP-R©Motorcyclist

The GP-R Perforated from Alpinestars is made of 1.3mm leather with reinforced stitching. CE-approved armor in the shoulders and elbows add impact protection, along with padded inserts in the chest and back (both of which are upgradeable to Alpinestars Bionic protectors). Strategically positioned perforated panels aid cooling, and accordion stretch inserts provide a close fit. Pre-curved sleeves reduce bunching and riding fatigue. A fixed mesh liner, zippered front pockets, and an interior wallet pocket are standard. (46-60, three colors, $479.95, www.alpinestars.com)

Dainese Razon
Dainese Razon©Motorcyclist

The Razon features Dainese's regular-fit cut, and is made of cowhide leather with micro-elastic stretch inserts. There are two outside pockets and one inside. The neck and waist are adjustable. Air vents on the chest aid ventilation, and for chilly days there's a removable thermal liner with a pocket. EN-1621 armor is included, and there's a pocket for an optional back protector. (44-58, black, $499.95, www.dainese.com)

Rev'It! Masaru
Rev'It! Masaru©Motorcyclist

Rev'it's Masaru jacket is made of Monaco Performance cowhide with stretch panels, a polyester lining, and a detachable thermal liner. It comes with CE-approved armor in the shoulders and elbows, and can be equipped with an optional back protector that's sold separately. The fit is race tight, with adjustment straps at the waist to keep out the breeze. The shell is partly perforated at the front, back, and arms, and pockets on the front and inside let you carry your wallet and documents. (46-58, three colors, $549.99, www.revitsport.com )

Scorpion Clutch
Scorpion Clutch©Motorcyclist

The Clutch jacket from Scorpion is made of 1.2-1.4mm top-grain leather with ventilated panels front and rear. It comes with molded shoulder protectors backed by CE-approved armor, and has a compartment for a back protector. A MotoGP-style back hump adds protection and has a hollow core that aids air flow. There are accordion leather stretch panels on the sides and elbows, and a removable and washable insulated liner is standard. Full-circumference and 8-inch zippers as well as a belt loop provide secure pants attachment. (SM-3XL, two colors, $499.95, www.scorpionusa.com)

Speed and Strength Rust and Redemption
Speed and Strength Rust and Redemption©Motorcyclist

The Rust and Redemption jacket from Speed and Strength is a classic design made of premium cowhide. There are pockets at the shoulders and elbows for armor, and a pocket for a back protector (the armor and pad are not included). A removable quilted insulated vest liner provides warmth, and shoulder expansion gussets allow freedom of movement on and off the bike. Perforated leather panels improve ventilation, while lockdown waist adjusters keep the wind from blowing up your back. There are belt loops for pants attachment, and reflective trim for nighttime visibility. (SM-3XL, black, $449.95, www.ssgear.com)