With summer just around the corner, the weather is beginning to slowly change it’s mind. That being said the sun is still hiding away and the April showers haven’t quite left yet. Grabbing yourself a solid windproof jacket is a fantastic idea to carry you through until the sun really comes out to play. On the surface, the Altura Night Vision Windproof appeals to commuters, roadies and mountain bikers alike.
Despite the morning and evening commutes being on the light side at the moment, autumn comes around fast so a jacket that can be used right through to the end of the year would be a benefit to most of us!
The Altura Night Vision Windproof Jacket was tested across a range of disciplines. Both out on the road and in the warehouse. With a price tag of £27.99 it’s definitely on the cheaper side of the price range.
Despite not appealing to the racers amongst you, Altura are renowned for making products that work. Function and performance are evidently high up the priority list in the top secret Altura design lab. Aesthetics often take a hit for this, although if you’re a commuter with price & performance in mind, they’re a name I’d keep in mind.
As we know when picking clothing aesthetic is often high on the priority list, we evaluated this. In terms of aesthetic the design of the Altura Night Vision Windproof is kept quite simple. A few reflective strips on both the front and back of the jacket, along with the Altura badge on the sleeves. We found that the orange was quite ‘out there’ although a commonly appearing colour in the bike world, this could be used to finish the perfect outfit. The black jacket is very plain so will match most outfits if that’s what you’re after.
We did feel that altura could have been more adventurous with the designs of the jacket, although mixed colour schemes add to the budget when designing the garment. The simple look often works well for many commuters, cost is key after all!
Considering the name of this jacket is the ‘Altura Night Vision’, upon first glance the jacket doesn’t look very safe. The reflective strips are minimal and only at the bottom of the jacket. Although once the light is shone on the jacket its very clear that there is a generous amount of reflective material, allowing any rider to keep safe as the days draw in.
It has to be said though, if you ride in an aggressive position the reflective strips are minimal, and there isn’t much in the way of upper back reflection. If you’re a mountain biker often this lower section can be covered in mud so this doesn’t leave much reflection when you’re out in the dark. So this is something to bear in mind when choosing the safest outfit for a night time ride.
The cut is generous but more towards the race end of the scale. It’ll fit in both as a top layer in winter or just to cover the race kit underneath.
Despite the cheap price tag of this jacket, it performs surprisingly well. The front of the jacket is made of ‘Altec’ windproof material. This thicker material protects you from the oncoming chill, and is located just in the areas that you need them. Meanwhile the underarms and back are made of a much more breathable material. The jacket doesn’t feel sweaty or clammy towards the end of the session. This makes it a great choice for the top layer during a winter commute or long ride.
The deep pockets on the back allow it to be used as a jersey without have to fiddle about trying to get your nutrition out. The Night Vision Windproof also includes a zip pocket for valuables. This is an increasingly popular feature in jerseys and jackets although definitely overlooked. The lack of lapel pocket is made up for here.
The polyester/spandex fabric feels quite well cushioned and stretches nicely around the body. It’s easy to wash although if washed on too high a setting the reflective strips will begin to peel slightly. The Night Vision Windproof holds it’s form and texture well despite daily use & regular washing.
If you’re looking for an affordable, functional, windproof jacket to use through into the autumn and beyond – this could be the one for you. Not the most aesthetically pleasing, but safe and warm. What more can you ask for?