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Pearl Izumi MTB WRX Review

- published August 2017

88

2017

RATINGS

Weathershedding
7
Breathability
9
Function
8
Fit/Comfort
7
Packability
9
Durability
8
GEAR INSTITUTE RATING
88

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MSRP
LOW PRICE
$175.00
Support Gear Institute. If you make a purchase after clicking on the links above, a portion of the sale helps support this site.

THE GOOD

  • Great against wind & rain
  • Durable
  • Built in room at elbows for pads

THE BAD

  • No pockets
  • Doesn’t breathe as well
  • No reflective features

THE VERDICT

The Pearl Izumi MTB WRX Jacket is as durable and water resistant as any jacket in the test group but it didn’t breathe well, which left riders feeling sticky on climbs and chilled on descents. It is light and packs tightly, though not as well as the best in class piece. Riders preferred the semi-form fitting cut over other jackets in the test, due to its overall comfort and capacity to stretch without compromising movement or protection from elements.

FULL REVIEW

Weathershedding
The Pearl Izumi WxB fabric of the MTB WRX Jacket stood up on par with others in the test admirably. In a ride with a steady rain of over an hour, very little water soaked through, though the outside was caked in mud and moisture. It was a great wind-breaking jacket on cooler mornings and on descents, as long as it was warmer than 45 degrees.

Breathability
The Pearl Izumi MTB WRX Jacket WxB fabric resisted wind as well as any in the test but scored poorly in its ability to purge heat and moisture. Even with the armpit and hood vents wide open it quickly became humid on long climbs, especially as the sun came and went from behind the clouds. During descents, wet air felt trapped inside the jacket leaving riders feeling chilled.

Function
The Pearl Izumi MTB WRX Jacket was a mixed bag of good and bad features. The hood easily fit over a bike helmet and stayed in place even without drawstrings. However, when not in use, the hood does not pack away and will flap around in the breeze. The sleeves and back were long enough to provide solid protection against wind and mud-spray. Extra fabric at the elbows provides strength against abrasion and room for pads. A universal complaint among the test group was the lack of pockets. This was the only jacket in the test group without a single pocket. There were also no reflective features.

Fit/Comfort
The semi-form fit and supple fabric of the Pearl Izumi MTB WRX made it an easy jacket to wear in diverse climates. Riders liked the aesthetic and the fact that it stretched and moved with the body without the entire garment moving out of place. The jacket did not restrict the range of motion in anyway, nor did it ride up or need to be adjusted while riding.

Packability
The Pearl Izumi MTB WRX Jacket packs down to the size of a 20 oz. coffee cup which is slightly larger than others in the test. Without any pockets, the best packing solution is to roll it into its own hood.

Durability
As mentioned, the reinforced elbows of the Pearl Izumi MTB WRX Jacket were a plus and they did a great job against abrasion during tests against brush and even a fall. The polyester material felt strong throughout and was stronger in the seams than others in the test.

Blend: 100% Polyester woven twill with a 2.5 charcoal membrane.

How We Tested It

The jackets in this test were used in rain, high winds and sunny days  on asphalt, hard pack dirt, sand, granite and sandstone in Southern California. Temperatures ranged from 48 to 75 degrees and distances ranged from 10 to 40 miles with big climbs and descents.

For more reviews beyond this 2017 test, check out our best fat bikes test, best cycling backpacks test, and other related bike gear tests.

The products featured in this test have been loaned to the Gear Institute. For more on our policies regarding editorial objectivity and sample returns, see here.

About the Author

Boad Swanson

Boad Swanson

Boad Swanson is a healthcare entrepreneur and outdoor enthusiast. He primarily tests mountain bike and cycling gear in the year round friendly climate of Orange County, CA.

 

Shop for the Pearl Izumi MTB WRX

MSRP
LOW PRICE

$175.00
Support Gear Institute. If you make a purchase after clicking on the links above, a portion of the sale helps support this site.

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MSRP
LOW PRICE
$175.00
Support Gear Institute. If you make a purchase after clicking on the links above, a portion of the sale helps support this site.

RATINGS

Weathershedding
7
Breathability
9
Function
8
Fit/Comfort
7
Packability
9
Durability
8
GEAR INSTITUTE RATING
88

Weight

8.5 oz

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