Alpinestars is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2014. Part of the reason for the company’s success is its ability to adapt with the times and advance with the changing motorcycle landscape. From motocross boots to racing leathers and (almost) everything in between, when it comes to gear, Alpinestars has become a trusted name in this sport.
With the unveiling of its 2014 street collection, Alpinestars is looking to maintain its reputation. A bevy of new items were revealed, from riding shoes to Sport-Touring attire, but here we’re going to focus on a few key items which should appeal to a broad riding audience. Visit the Alpinestars website for a full rundown of the new additions. Everything will be available to consumers in early September.
GP Pro Leather Jacket ($529.95)
A serious sport jacket for the serious sport rider, the GP Pro leather jacket features a healthy mix of 1.3mm cowhide with microfiber accordion panels throughout the sides and underarms for great range of movement. The shoulders and elbows get removable CE-certified protectors, with Alpinestars’ external Dynamic Friction Shield to help the rider slide instead of tumble during a fall. The GP Pro is also compatible with A-Stars’ Bionic line of accessory hard armor for extra protection.
Inside the jacket there’s foam padding for the chest, torso, coccyx and back. Perforations in the chest area provide ventilation, while the 3D mesh and leather collar sit comfortably around the neck. The jacket has a speed hump on the back for cleaner aerodynamics and a removable inner liner for easy washing and maintenance. A full-circumference waist connection attaches to a number of A-Stars pants for two-piece protection.
“Rideout” Collection ($219.95 – $399.95)
For the adventurous outdoorsman (or woman), Alpinestars introduces the Rideout collection, featuring the Dusk, Lance, Mack, Scion, Stella Cassie, Stella Francie and Tyler Down. Tailored to appear — and function! — like outdoor wear from, say, North Face or Patagonia, A-Stars then works its magic to give it motorcycle worthiness that protects you on the bike and doesn’t make you look like a superhero off it.
Focusing on the $399.95 Dusk, it’s a three-layer waterproof and breathable textile jacket “guaranteed to bring out the Urban Adventurer in you.” The first layer is a water-resistant outer shell, followed by a waterproof and breathable membrane and then a light mesh lining bonded together for reduced bulk and durability. All seams are tape-sealed for guaranteed waterproofing. Inside, there’s a thermal liner for cold rides or climes.
On the protection front, a mesh inner liner houses CE-certified soft armor in the shoulder and elbow areas. The liner is removable, meaning you can wear the jacket without the added bulk once off the bike or simply as a normal jacket. A variety of features like pre-curved sleeves, zippered vents and pull cords ensure an exact, contoured fit to the rider’s body. If you’re a regular commuter craving the look and function of an outdoor jacket, the Rideout series kills two birds with one stone.
“Black Shadow” Collection ($699.95 – $799.95)
Another new collection is the “Black Shadow” line, which does its best to make the rider look and feel like Batman. Consisting of the Hades, Huntsman and Phantom, all three come in solid black, while the last two are also available in Pyrite.
The Huntsman is a general purpose riding jacket with a vintage feel, cotton-poly inner liner and your standard array of CE soft armor in the shoulders and elbows, perfect for the cruiser rider or cafe racer. The other two lean towards the sport side, with 1.3mm leather construction, Aramid stretch panels, CE-approved shoulder and elbow protection, along with new, dual-density carbon fiber compound clavicle and shoulder sliders. The Phantom takes it a step further with carbon sliders placed on the elbows as well.
Stella Motegi Leather Suit ($799.95)
The next addition to the Stella collection, A-Stars’ line of female-specific apparel, is the Motegi Leather Suit. Taking many cues from the men’s Motegi suit, the Stella version is constructed with 1.3mm leather and designed around the female figure. Greater range of movement is allowed with the use of reinforced Aramid fiber stretch panels, and seams are stitched multiple times for maximum abrasion resistance.
There’s CE-certified hard armor in the shoulder and elbow areas, with foam padding in the hips, coccyx, torso and upper arms. The Motegi also features snap connectors for the Bionic Race back protector for ultimate safety. Being a one-piece suit, it also includes an aero hump on the back, and the inner liner has built-in stretch inserts for a snug fit. It’s also removable so you can stick it in the wash.
Valparaiso Drystar Jacket and Pants ($429.95/$369.95)
Alpinestars hasn’t forgotten about the Adventure-Touring market. While the company is better known for its racing products, A-Stars has logged a lot of hours developing high-class gear for the rider who likes to travel off the beaten path. The Valparaiso Drystar jacket and matching pants are the latest in this collection.
Using A-Stars’ proprietary Drystar waterproof, breathable and removable inner liner, combined with its thermal liner (also removable), plus the zippered air ventilation areas, the Valparaiso is the choice for nearly every weather condition. It goes without saying the jacket has shoulder and elbow armor, while the pants have bio-armor in the knees. Complementing the hard armor is foam padding in the chest, back, and thighs.
The jacket and pants feature a wide array of internal and external zippers and storage areas, perfect for carrying whatever you need when you’re out in the middle of nowhere. Available from size small to 4XL, the pants can also be ordered with a shorter inseam for the vertically challenged.
T-Jaws Waterproof Textile Jacket ($269.95)
For the sporty rider looking for a reasonably affordable, versatile jacket that stands up to rain, the T-Jaws waterproof textile jacket might be your answer. Outer construction is a poly-nylon textile with a special coating resistant to abrasion, tearing and water. Inside, a waterproof and breathable membrane keeps rain out while allowing air in. Range of movement is achieved with microfiber stretch panels in non-impact areas, while shoulder and elbow CE protectors help keep you safe in a crash.
A long-sleeve removable thermal liner with pockets is great for riding in chilly weather, and the soft microfiber collar and sleeve edges feel nice against the skin. The T-Jaws is well suited for students, as it’s relatively inexpensive, has plenty of storage space (some waterproof) and comes loaded with features designed to withstand three-season riding.
Archer X-Trafit Glove ($229.95)
A large complaint many riders have, us included, with winter riding gloves is the lack of feel at the controls. The added bulk required to keep our digits warm also detracts from our ability to manipulate the levers like we want to. Alpinestars believes it has found the solution with the X-Trafit line of gloves. A revised construction process laminates the outer layer to the Gore-Tex membrane and inner layer below it, creating a sealed triple layer structure much thinner than that used on conventional cold-weather gloves with “floating” layers. The result is better feel that’s instantly noticeable the moment you slip it on.
The Archer X-Trafit is a leather, three-quarter length all-weather riding glove utilizing the above process. Hard knuckle protection with air vents helps the hands stay cool and protected. Because people have a tendency to stick their hands out when falling, strategically placed padding on the palm keeps the abrasion damage to the palms at a minimum.
The glove is already pre-curved to reduce fatigue, and stretch panels throughout the glove allow normal hand movement. There’s even a wiper on the left thumb to sweep away water or grime on your visor.
Stella Josey Waterproof Shoe ($159.95)
And now for something a little different. The Stella Josey (and Joey, the men’s version) Waterproof shoe was actually designed by A-Star’s footwear department to be a shoe that makes a fashion statement both on or off the motorcycle. To be honest, the Josey looks like the shoes Lady Gaga would wear if she played basketball. Nonetheless, as part of the Stella line, it’s designed specifically for women and has been optimized for a woman’s foot.
The split suede upper construction and microfiber rear collar gives it a luxurious feel. Meanwhile, a wax treatment on the outer shell repels water. But if the rain storm starts coming down hard, the waterproof membrane liner is there to keep feet dry. The Josey features many items you’d see on normal athletic-type shoes, like a reinforced toe-box and mid-sole insert. In reality, it’s better suited to the catwalk than a motorcycle, but no matter what, the shoes will get you attention no matter where you go.
Tech Aero Tank Bag ($189.95)
Another lesser-known Alpinestar product is its line of luggage. From gear bags to backpacks, A-Stars’ collection of luggage deserves consideration. This Tech Aero tank bag is a modular unit with nylon-polyester construction and is compatible with both plastic and metal fuel tanks via straps or magnets.
It’s fully expandable from 20 to 30 liters and uses tough YKK zippers to open or close the main compartment. An internal laptop sleeve fits tablets or computers and is great for commuting to/from school or the workplace. There are pockets all over, inside and out, to store plenty of smaller items, and the top of the bag features a map/GPS window for easy navigation. The removable base of the Tech Aero also has a map window, should you desire a ride without the added bulk of the bag. A securable and water-resistant cover is also included for when the weather turns soggy.