It seems that, every year, more of our kit drawer turns black. This trend is especially prevalent in inclement weather gear, which may look stealth on the start line but feels a bit understated for training rides or commutes through low-light city streets. The men's Zap Bike Jacket is Sugoi's solution to stealth kit syndrome. It sheathes the foul-weather cyclist in a waterproof, wind-resistant membrane that is all-over reflective when hit with artificial light. It's just a normal color in daytime, but when headlights catch it, it catches attention.
As with the previous Zap models, this jacket incorporates micro-glass beads into the actual material. Before Zap, our only recourse in low-light situations has been a few strips of reflective material that hopefully catch headlights or street lamps at the right time. Even previous iterations of the Zap Bike Jacket were only given reflective highlights. But with Pixel, the entire jacket is reflective, from collar to cuff, shoulder to hem.
The Zap Bike Jacket also provides a high degree of less-revolutionary but equally appreciated water- and wind-resistance, and its exaggerated sleeves and rear hem keep your wrists dry and protect your back and saddle from the rooster tail of water that'll be pinwheeling off your rear tire in the rain. (Your riding buddies remain unprotected—but, if they don't like it, remind them that they can always take a pull or get off your wheel.)
In the even that the skies clear or the jacket proves too protective, Sugoi has integrated zippered side vents that are surprisingly effective at dumping heat while you're in motion. Protection is the Zap's primary role, though, so the full-length front zip is waterproof and the seams are taped to make sure there are no leaks. The flap covered rear pocket adds security that helps keep your key in and the rain out.
- A cycling jacket for riding in inclement conditions
- Fully reflective body helps keep you seen in low-light conditions
- Water- and wind-resistance protects against the elements
- Sugoi's Semi Fit allows for comfortable layering
- Waterproof front zipper and taped seams
- Zippered vents on sides for airflow when the skies clear mid-ride
- Rear pocket protected from rain by flap
- Item #SUG00A9
- Q & A
Nothing else like it
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
- Fit: True to size
The sheer astonishing reflectivity of this jacket makes it uniquely valuable as a piece of cycling gear. It is also highly windproof and mostly waterproof. For daily commuting in the rainy, dark Pacific NW winters it is a lifesaver. Do I wish it was a bit less of a bulky cut? Yes. Do I wish it breathed a bit better? Yes. Do the reflective beads wear off, to some degree, after years of heavy use with a pack? Yes. Do I wish it had a smoother zipper for one-handed operation, like my Rapha winter jersey does? Yes. In conclusion though, when this one wears out I'll just get another one. The little reflective accents on most pieces of gear are a joke compared to the incredible reflectivity that this jacket produces.
Nice Jacket for Cooler Weather
I wear the Sugoi Zap jacket over a winter long sleeve jersey to ride in the 30 and 40 degree F temperatures in the upper Midwest USA. It allows me to ride comfortably where a heavier winter jacket would be too much and a regular wind breaker is completely insufficient. Since getting the Zap jacket I rode 3 times the miles I've ever done in any prior month of March.
High quality Product
Great Jacket, has the perfect amount of room for thin or thick layers, or both... very solid fabric so quality layers would be beneficial in aiding moisture management so you can avoid the soggy feel, from personal experiences craft makes the best layer 1 which suits this material, from there thicker layers provide the moisture movement at a rate thatâs necessary in maintaining a not so soggy feel... great product, super in rainy and windy conditions... as a runner first, this product line is my first and only choice... so immediately the quality is recognized in this biking apparel.
The reflective beads are amazing!
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Based solely on the effectiveness of the reflective beads when riding at night, I would give this jacket 5 stars. The zap technology is by far this jacket's biggest asset. I felt more visible and received several comments from passersby.
The jacket is windproof and waterproof. With base layers, the jacket kept me warm into the teens. It also kept me dry during rainy rides.
Where this jacket could be improved:
The flap inside the zipper frequently gets snagged by the zipper. I've never experienced this being such a noticeable problem with any other jacket.
While the vents help somewhat, I still found that I felt more swampy in this jacket than I do in other windproof and waterproof bike jackets. I think additional options for ventilation (e.g., integrated in some front pockets) would make this jacket more versatile in higher temperatures.
I used this jacket primarily for my daily commute. For commuting, this jacket would be improved with front pockets for additional storage, and possibly ventilation. Additionally, adjustable cuffs for winter riding with gloves would be helpful.
This may be particular to me, but I've found Sugoi's sizing difficult to find a good fit. I'm 6'1" and 185lbs, not skinny, but fairly trim. Compared to other brands I had to go up one size on this jacket (XL), which has been my experience with Sugoi shorts, as well. The large fit better in the sleeves, but I went with the XL to be able to wear additional layers in the winter. Being a semi-fit cut, I find the jacket to be a bit bulkier than I'd prefer.