Shimano Element Jacket review in a sentence: It’s warm, windproof and repels water a treat too, so the asking price seems more than justified if you’re a keen cyclist.
Every year, as autumn turns into winter, I start thinking about the best weatherproof cycling jackets I’ve owned over the years. It’s a long-ish list, but one thing that stands out is the quality of the brands I tend to buy. While you can frequently find cheap and cheerful cycling kit at the local discount supermarkets around town, if you’re serious about staying warm and dry as well as sticking with a tried and tested brand, you’ll want to be prepared to pay a little more for the privilege.
While shelling out more cash in the current climate might not seem particularly appealing, a top-notch weatherproof cycling jacket should last the test of time. More importantly, it should also get the job done effectively, leaving you to enjoy your cycling activities without fear of returning home soggy and cold. That’s why this Shimano Element Jacket makes so much sense because it’s not only well designed but it is a dream to wear and feels every bit as good as the asking price suggests.
If you want to know more about T3's product reviews, take a look at our how we test page. Otherwise, read on for my thoughts about the Shimano Element Jacket
Shimano Element Jacket: price and availability
The Shimano Element Jacket is available right now (opens in new tab) and comes in a variety of both men’s and women’s sizes. There’s a choice of colours too, with the black one looking very cool. However, if you’re after more visibility when you’re cycling, the Fluoro Yellow variant might be the one to go for as it really helps you stand out from the crowd. Sizes include Small, Medium, Large, X-Large, XX-Large and XXX-Large so there’s one to fit any kind of build.
Shimano Element Jacket: design and build
As is the case with other Shimano kit, the design of the Element Jacket is not only great to look at but it’s also hugely practical, just as you’d expect. Take it out of the packaging and it immediately feels like a quality item, with a raised neck, which is complimented by a brushed lining. I really like the elasticated cuffs too, as these help keep wind and rain from penetrating into and up your sleeves.
Shimano has manufactured this using a blend of Polyester, Elastane and Polyurethane, which means that it’s going to be very durable as well as being excellent at fending off the worst the elements can throw at it. You also get added practicality thanks to three back pockets.
I also really like the inner pocket, which Shimano has sensibly ensured is sweatproof, so you can keep things like cards, money or a wallet inside without fear of them ending up all soggy at the next coffee stop.
Topping off the durability factor with the Shimano Element Jacket is the zipper, which as a quality YKK affair, featuring a can-lock design that should deliver years of quick and easy zipping. I’ll also mention the chin guard and inner wind flap too, both of which provide the icing on the garment cake.
Shimano Element Jacket: verdict
I’ve owned Shimano jackets in the past and some have survived to this day. One in particular continues to get daily use, despite zip tags falling off and holes appearing in hard wearing areas such as elbows. I’m hoping that this Shimano Element Jacket will last just as long and, judging from the way it’s been made and the components used, so far leaves me thinking it’ll be just as durable.
The zipper, in particular, is reassuringly robust as that’s often the thing that goes first. Combine that with the stylish design and option to go for a vivid shade of Fluoro Yellow and it is even more appealing. Proof once again that it really is worth spending a little more on your cycling apparel if you’re expecting any kind of longevity from it.