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Since 1999, the #1 Motorcycling Magazine for Women and the Men Who Ride with Them









Review: Dainese Gore-Tex Jacket & Pants Riding Outfit

Top-of-the-line protection that looks fabulous on any motorcycle!

By Genevieve Schmitt, Editor
6/7/2016

Last summer I flew to Italy to participate in the first ever WRN sponsored motorcycle tour of Italy. The occasion called for the most versatile motorcycle gear available so I chose a riding outfit from Dainese, an Italian manufacturer, for all the obvious reasons not the least of which is that I love the brand’s slimming style on women.

I chose the Zima Gore-Tex jacket because of the many superb features packed into one jacket. I matched it with Dainese’ Travelguard Gore-Tex Lady pants to create a superior motorcycle outfit that, in my opinion, is number one in fit and style. It offers me the highest protection available while looking great on any motorcycle, sportbike, sport tourer, and cruiser. To me it is a little more stylish than the Dainese Tempest D-Dry Lady Jacket and Pants we also tested.

review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review zima
The Zima Gore-Tex jacket from Dainese pairs well with the Travelguard Gore-Tex Lady also from Dainese in terms of style and function. I fit right in with the Italian urban landscape! I’m also wearing Dainese Ixia boots that are no longer available from the company, but you might find them on closeout or eBay.

review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review bmw f 800 r
From overcast skies and raindrops to low 80-degree F temperatures, the Gore-Tex membrane on the Dainese Zima jacket and Travelguard pants kept me dry and my body temperature just right. The whole outfit was comfortable for riding all day on the rented BMW F 800 R.

I’ve worn and tested many textile motorcycle jackets over the years, but by far the Mugello brand textile fabric of both the jacket and pants is what sets it apart from other textile jackets that have the same comfort features.

Mugello is a mix of Elastomeric fabric and micro nylon that is much softer to the touch than standard textile jackets that have a sandpaper-like feel to them. This mixture of materials allows the fabric to give and then come back to its original shape (read nice level of stretchiness here) while maintaining tear-resistance. The garment’s finish resists water and oil, and never wrinkles. For the “abuse” I put it through, being stuffed into a suitcase and eight days of riding, the jacket looks almost new. Road grime rubbed off with a wet towel.

Following are photos with captions describing my thoughts on the array of features found on the Dainese Zima Gore-Tex jacket.

review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review front zipper
The outer shell’s zipper is protected by a generous double flap system that snaps to keep water from seeping inside. The zipper ends at the waist allowing the jacket’s hip area to “fan out” in the front. This prevents the jacket from ballooning in the torso area when seated. Notice the large, glove-friendly zipper pull and the long vertical zippered pocket that’s accessible without unzipping the jacket. It's so roomy I fit a CD jewel case in there with lots of space to spare!


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review sleeve cuff
The wrist enclosures (with three different snap adjustments – wow!) are gusseted to ensure no rain gets inside when slipping waterproof gloves over the sleeve. Two snap adjustments on the bicep let you secure the sleeve to your arm so the elbow armor stays in place. Notice another vertical pocket, slightly smaller than the inside one—and the waist pocket here that is matched by one on the other side of the jacket.


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review waist adjustment
Dainese put a little tab on the end of the Velcro waist fastener (covered up by my two fingers unfortunately) that lets you pull the belt apart easily to adjust it. Notice the additional vertical zippered waist adjustment here. Lots of fit adjustability with the Zima jacket!


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review pocket
All the roomy pockets eliminate the need for a purse. The four on the front are made waterproof by rubber-sealed seams by the zippers as well as flaps to cover them. Dainese even added a snap on either side of the lower flap pocket—one is seen here— so the flap stays secure and doesn’t blow up in the wind thereby preventing water seepage. Wow again! Simple details that make all the difference!


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review collar
I’m never happy with the neck adjustments of motorcycle jackets because they’re often not very adjustable. The Dainese Zima’s neck adjustment is so artfully designed that it works when I have a buff around my neck for extra warmth and when I don’t. Yeah! The zipper on the shoulder matches one on the other shoulder and opens for the only front venting on the jacket. There are no rear vents. This jacket is designed for cooler weather riding.


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review inside
The inside, shown here with the full-sleeve liner removed, is lined with a soft heat-reflecting material that’s breathable. I was surprised at how cool I felt in spite of this in high 80-degree F weather. For those who care about such ratings, removable EN 1621.1 Standard shoulder and elbow armor comes with the jacket. A pocket for an optional G-type back protector is sewn in as well. And the zipper for the pant attachment only works with Dainese pants.


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review liner
The full-sleeve quilted removable liner is very warm and is designed to be worn as a stand-alone jacket if you need a cover-up at night. This small Velcro-shut pocket can fit credit cards, money, and lip balm.


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review italy
The whole outfit looks sharp against the textured rusty patina wall of this Italian building.


I wear a women’s size medium in U.S. sizing (which translates to a size 6-8), however the corresponding Italian sizes, 38 and 40, were too tight. The size 42 is what I chose. I have long arms, broad shoulders, and a small bustline (36A), so I always have extra room in the bust area of my jackets, but as long as the rest fits, that is what’s important. Use this info to judge your own sizing.

Dainese lists the Zima jacket in the “winter” temperature category, but with the liner removed the jacket was still cool enough for me riding in the high 80s. Plus, it’s worth noting that it’s not a heavy jacket to wear or carry around.

The Travelguard pants also have a Gore-Tex membrane and are designed for cooler weather riding, but with the Capri-length liner removed, the shell was cool enough to wear in warm weather. Below are photos describing the features of the pants and how they worked for me.

review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review travelguard
The midrise waistline is what appeals to me most about the Dainese Travelguard Gore-Tex Lady pants as I don’t like high-waisted pants. I tried on REV'IT! riding pants as an option to pair with the Zima jacket but the waistline above my navel turned me off. The Travelguards feel more like a comfortable pair of jeans at the waist with a zipper, a button, and a sliding snap-type fastener to ensure the pants stay put on you.


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review waist cinch
A tab on the Velcro waist adjustment lets you cinch that area for fit; large zippered hand pockets and vents on either side give these pants lots of versatility. The shell is made from the same Mugello fabric along with stretchy Duratex in places where it’s needed.


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review rear
The deep pockets in the front make up for the lack of pockets in the rear. Both would be too much anyway. The pants have a hugging fit, which I like. I also appreciate the strip of reflective material in just the right place for visibility in the rear.


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review knee armor
The only obvious turn off for me here is the obtrusive knee armor that sticks out when walking, but it isn’t uncomfortable to walk in; just more of a vanity issue. But the knee armor extends to the top part of my boots for generous leg protection, so I appreciate that.


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review legs
Here’s what the pants look like out of the boots. With the zippered gusset open you can put the pant legs over some boots.


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review comfort
The Dainese outfit was comfortable enough to wear while walking around the ancient sites in Italy, like the 11th century Abbey at San Galgano, posing here with WRN assistant editor Tricia Szulewski. No bulk or bigness to weigh me down after I took out the quilted liner.


review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review back
The Travelguard pants are not overpants, so they’re meant to be worn as pants with or without the quilted liner inside. I wear nylon "boy shorts" as my base layer because I don't like panty lines, which show on these "snug-fitting" pant.

The Dainese Zima jacket and Travelguard pants exceeded my expectations with what I desired in a technical riding outfit: protection, comfort, and amazing style.

The Dainese Zima jacket retails for $549.95, about $100 more than the REV’IT! Sand jacket, $150 less than Rukka’s Orbita jacket, and $100 less than BMW’s TourShell jacket reviewed here on WRN, all with similar features. The off-white and gray color I have is discontinued, but there are three other colors to choose from. Learn more and order directly from Dainese’s website at this link.

The Dainese Travelguard Gore-Tex Lady retails for $399.95, $50 less than BMW’s TourShell pants reviewed here on WRN. Order directly from Dainese’s website here.

review dainese gore-tex jacket and pants review tuscany
Here’s another shot of me wearing the Zima jacket on the motorcycle with the Tuscan countryside behind me. If you’re interested, I also tested the helmet, gloves, and Bluetooth system in this photo. Links listed below.

Other gear tested on this trip:
Racer Warm Up Women’s Waterproof Gloves
Sena 20S Bluetooth and Prism Camera
Arai CT-Z Helmet

Related Articles
Review: Dainese Tempest D-Dry Jacket and Pants
Review: BMW TourShell Jacket and Pants
Review: Scorpion Zion Three-Season Jacket



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