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THE RST VENTILATOR V | Riding Gear + Equipment | Tested

The breeze without the freeze

THE RST VENTILATOR V offers a nice balance between style and substance, and is well priced for an all-seasons jacket. It has a durable outer mesh construction and two removable linings that can be added or removed to suit the conditions. There’s CE approved body armour in the back, shoulders and elbows for protection in the event of a crash, and a pair of Velcro waist straps to adjust the fit. The three multi- button press straps on each sleeve can be used to stop it ballooning out when a layer is removed.

The porous outer shell is ideal for summer and has a massive inside pocket on the left, as well as a smaller one just inside the front zip for your cards and cash. Then there are two additional liners that can be attached to the outer shell. The first, a 100g quilted thermal liner, does a great job of keeping you snug and warm on frosty winter mornings. It’s very comfortable and easy to slip on, and when combined with a neck sock, is more than capable of keeping icy cold wind at bay. The second layer is waterproof, made from a material called Sinaqua, which is also designed to breathe so you don’t get a build- up of condensation from body heat inside the jacket. It was only subjected to light showers but handled these well.

We liked

The jacket’s versatile triple lining system makes it ideal for those who don’t want a cupboard full of gear at home.

The stretch panels behind both shoulders and elbows are well placed and there’s a nice combo of wind flaps, Velcro and zippers to ensure that cold wind and rain don’t make their way through the front door.

The RST Contour Plus CE-approved back, shoulder and elbow padding can be easily removed and this jacket also zips onto RST’s textile jeans, which is an added bonus.

We didn’t like

The front zipper on the external shell has a nice long plastic tab, but that idea should have been used on the front pockets as well so you could access them with gloves on. Also, the back of the thermal lining is quite delicate and showed signs of tearing in random places after only a few months of use – another thing to watch.

Verdict

At $350 this jacket represents great value for money and is well suited to changing conditions (such as Melbourne’s ‘four seasons in one day’ weather). I’d like to see some harder-wearing material on the back surface of the thermal quilted layer to stop it tearing, and a buckle instead of zips on the sleeves, but all in all it’s impressive for the price. The RST Ventilator V offers comfort and protection, with a versatile look that suits a wide range of motorcycles and riding styles.

By Paul McCann

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