MO Tested: Pando Moto Steel Black Jeans Review

Ryan Adams
by Ryan Adams

My own holy grail of moto jeans

Ever since protective moto-specific jeans hit the market, I’ve been searching to find some that I liked. It’s been a challenge. I’m 5’8” with a 30-inch inseam and pretty muscular thighs – the watermelon-crushing kind. For a long time, it was the fit that bothered me. Euro jeans were too skinny, others were too baggy. Furthermore, jeans built with aramid fiber offer zero stretch to help with fit. Even now that there’s a plethora of jeans on offer from many different brands, I’ve yet to find any that I, personally, am 100% stoked about, be it fit, color, style, etc. At long last, the Pando Moto Steel Black jeans have been like finding the needle in the haystack for me.

Pando Moto Steel Black Jeans

Editor Score: 91.25%
Aesthetics 9.5/10
Protection 9.0/10
Value 8.75/10
Comfort/Fit 10.0/10
Quality/Design 9.5/10
Weight 9.0/10
Options/Selection 8.5/10
Innovation 9.0/10
Weather Suitability 8.5/10
Desirable/Cool Factor 9.5/10
Overall Score91.25/100

The Lithuanian brand, Pando Moto, has been around since 2011 though it’s first step into the international spotlight was at the 2014 edition of EICMA in Milan, Italy. The company was founded as a fashion brand initially. It was the chance encounter of Pando Moto’s offices being located above a Harley-Davidson dealership that brought the company into the technical garment business. Folks from both businesses discussed the lack of technical protective jeans on the market that looked good on and off the bike while being subtle enough to hit the club in. Fast forward and Pando Moto now offers 10 models of protective jeans for men, seven models for women as well as a few jackets and other casual apparel.

Part of the protection in the Pando Moto Steel Black jeans come from a single layer of 13-ounce denim that’s made up of 55% Dyneema. To create a single layer pant, the denim and dyneema are interwoven which means no double or triple lined areas of the pant. The use of Dyneema is what interested me most about the Steel Black jeans.

The white inner of the Steel Black points to the brand’s use of Dyneema fiber in its jeans. While cool to the touch, the pant warms up with your body temperature. Also note the chain stitched seams that provide extra durability where you need it most.

Dyneema boasts similar properties to Kevlar or aramid fiber, but has more than a few advantages. Dyneema, being a brand name, is to Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMwPE) what Kevlar is to aramid fiber (think Kleenex and tissue paper). Dyneema claims to be 15 times stronger than steel (in a weight to weight comparison), is 40% lighter than aramid (because it’s less dense), and thanks to its fibers naturally feeling cool, not absorbing water, and not trapping air, it works quite well when used in garments that may be worn in hot climates (or by people like yours truly who are constantly warm). Really, it seems one of the only disadvantages Dyneema has compared to Kevlar or aramid fiber, is the fact that it’s much less resistant to heat. Kevlar can withstand temperatures nearing 900°F while Dyneema’s degradation begins at a much lower 270°F. I guess I won’t be using them to pull hot swords from the forge. You’re not likely to generate 270°F from friction during an unfortunate slide, though so they should provide ample protection.

Knox CE Level 2 armor is included for the knees in two-way adjustable pockets and hip armor can be purchased separately should one be interested.

Style-wise the jeans look pretty much, well, like normal black jeans. The CE-Level 2 Knox armor that resides in the two-way adjustable pockets on the knees is hardly noticeable. There are also pockets for optional hip protectors as well, though I haven’t tried them. I would say the fit is slim and slightly tapered, but with the impressive amount of stretch, they easily conform to my curves no matter what I’m straddling. In fact, after ordering my typical size 32 and trying them on, I probably would’ve opted to size down. For now, I’ll just wear a belt. Oh yeah, and the Steel Black jeans are just that, dark black. After using the pants during my time riding the Cake Kalk OR, I left it’s stark white seat more than a little darker around the edges, the jeans themselves show a little fading too. Be aware if you plan on resting your seat on any other light-colored saddles.

The Pando Moto Steel Black jean easily fits over the Dainese Axial D1 boots as well as any other more casual boot, but you’re probably not going to be able to pull them over anything too bulky.

Other nice touches come by way of Pando Moto’s bespoke buttons and rivets, a sewn-on key ring, large belt loops, and minimal stitching on the outside of the jean to suggest there’s armor under there.

The Pando Moto Steel Black jeans are the pants I grab for quick errands, motorcycle launches where I need to keep it more casual, and really any time I don’t want to be wearing a dedicated moto-pant. The inclusion of Dyneema, the amount of stretch, and the subtlety of the Steel Black are everything I’ve been looking for in a pair of motorcycle jeans. It’s been a long time searching, and I’m glad I found the Pando Moto Steel Black jeans.

Shop for the Pando Moto gear here

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Ryan Adams
Ryan Adams

Ryan’s time in the motorcycle industry has revolved around sales and marketing prior to landing a gig at An avid motorcyclist, interested in all shapes, sizes, and colors of motorized two-wheeled vehicles, Ryan brings a young, passionate enthusiasm to the digital pages of MO.

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Join the conversation
24 of 28 comments
  • Campi the Bat Campi the Bat on Jan 20, 2020

    Pando Moto now offers... seven models for women...

    ... And every single one of them is a detestable mid-rise, which looks terrible on everyone.

    • See 20 previous
    • Old MOron Old MOron on Jan 22, 2020

      You know, I started to write: "It's not about propriety. It's about precision." Then I went to do a some research to help me make my point. But as I clicked around I was reminded that "you" is both plural and singular. And the versatility of that pronoun causes me no trouble at all. So maybe I can get over singular "they". Cheers.

  • Emil Emil on May 26, 2020

    The Pando Moto page for these says 25% Dyneema (not 55%). It also doesn't claim Knox Level 2 anywhere; they only claim "CE approved" which in armor land is a euphemism for "Level 1".

    So anyone know what's the current state of all these?

    • Ryan Ryan on May 26, 2020

      This version was discontinued. It looks like the closest model in the current lineup is the Steel Black 9 (which I am assuming is jean you're referring to as it's 25% Dyneema).