Part 1: Dainese D-Explorer Jacket Review
The Dainese D-Explorer pants are the perfect match for the Dainese D-Explorer jacket (review).
As with the Dainese Teren pants (review), these would also make an excellent choice for all-season use with other types and brands of jackets.
The pants have the unique Dainese "Modular Flap System" with a two-level adjustable vent on the thigh that opens wider than anything this side of a full mesh pair.
This ventilation system is more useful and more efficient than the fold-open flap system found on the Teren pants.
The D-Explorer pants are the top-of-the-line offering from Dainese for 2015.
As such, they include a Gore-Tex "Guaranteed to Keep You Dry" liner and the same Valtherm White Bear insulating liner, both removable.
The D-Explorer jacket and the D-Explorer pants both have a 5 year warranty from Dainese, an important consideration.
The pants are available in black or in the stone/gray/taupe color, preferred for hot weather.
And the pants also include the sleek metal snap/hook that secures the pants at the waist in front.
Like the D-Explorer jacket, the D-Explorer pants are designed for four-season use. The large 3D mesh-backed vent helps in hot weather but the liners do the job in Winter, making the D-Explorer a true all-around outfit for touring, street riding or adventure-touring.
The D-Explorer pants are at the top of the Dainese product line for 2015. As such, they include a Gore-Tex liner rather than the Dainese-developed "D-Dry" system, although in terms of performance, they're both a close match.
But you do get the Gore-Tex guarantee and Dainese gives a 5 year warranty on the D-Explorer outfit, something to consider.
The outer shell of the D-Explorer pants is the same as the D-Explorer jacket. It's a combination of the water-repellant treated abrasion-resistant Dainese Mugello fabric and Duratex. Both are a tightly-woven polyester.
The pants have large accordion pleats over the knees for flexibility and black fabric under the seat to hide wear and dirt stains from long hours in the saddle.
The most significant feature of the D-Explorer pants is the modular flap system on the thighs. The flap is held in place by zippers on either side and hook-and-loop on the bottom.
It can be folded half-way up and secured with the "M/W" slider or folded all the way up, exposing a large 26 cm by 15 cm (10" by 6") vent, backed with thick 3D mesh that helps circulate the air.
Pant vents don't move much air due to the mechanics of sitting on a motorcycle, but the vents on the D-Explorer pants are about as good as you'll find and, when the liners are removed, help quite a bit if you're standing on the foot pegs.
coolest (yes, we said it) feature of the Teren pants is the disappearing fold-open vent system in the front.
The Dainese marketing information obliquely implies there are suspenders for the D-Explorer pants (see the Dainese Teren pants review).
But our pants did not come with them nor does there appear to be anything that would allow suspenders to attach to the pants as far as we can tell.
But the pants do have a nearly full-length zipper attachment that fits the D-Explorer jacket.
The D-Explorer pants have the same type of pockets found on the Teren pants. There are two standard vertical pockets, one on either side.
They are covered with a flap that closes with hook-and-loop and underneath each pocket has a zipper.
The pocket liners are the same fabric as the jacket shell.
The Teren pants come with certified CE Level 1 knee protectors but there's only the tiniest sliver of very thin padding on the sides, which sort of makes one wonder why they bothered. The pants need CE rated hip protectors on either side at this price.
The front entry has a zipper with a fabric flap behind it and the waist secures with the sliding/locking metal snap and a button.
Curiously -- and like the Teren pants -- the metal waist snap is not rubberized, but assuming the pants remain underneath the jacket, it should be ok.
The liners in the D-Explorer pants are designed to fit just like the liners in the Teren pants. The quilted Valtherm White Bear insulating liner zips in to the waist with a one-piece, full-surround zipper.
It attaches slightly below mid-calf to the inside of the Gore-Tex liner with two snaps on loops.
The Gore-Tex liner also zips in to the waist with a one-piece, full-surround zipper and it attaches to the inside of the pant legs above the cuffs with two snaps, also on loops.
The liners do not use a zipper at the cuffs like the Teren pants; instead, they have two snaps. This isn't as secure as a zipper but probably had to be done to keep the Gore-Tex membrane intact.
The Teren pants come in sizes ranging from 50 to 62 (Euro), depending on color. Colors match the Teren jacket: black, dark gray/black or gray/light gray/taupe.
The pants shown here are size 54, equivalent to a men's size large and they fit as expected. They should fit a 35" to 36" (max) waist rider with a 30" to 31" inseam (the pants inseam is about 32" to account for the riding position).
The pants have attached and nicely integrated belt adjusters on either side.
The knee/shin protectors are adjustable for height, which is a nice touch. They are also certified to the CE Level 1 standard.
The Dainese D-Explorer pants are nicely styled and they're certainly comfortable. There are a couple of features missing though compared to the Teren pants: the zippers for the liner at the cuffs and the suspender system.
It would have been nice also if Dainese included more substantial hip protectors in the D-Explorer pants.
But the modular vent system works really well, despite the fact that we only tried it for a very brief interval due to the cold weather.
The D-Explorer pants aren't quite the all-season hit like the D-Explorer jacket; we're not sure how well the pants will perform in the hottest weather (although full mesh overpants are quite rare).
The security of having the Gore-Tex liner and the Valtherm insulation means that these pants will work in the coldest weather and, in fact, we can verify that as a fact.
Part 1: Dainese D-Explorer Jacket Review
From "J.D." (July 2015): "Just purchased these pants via a German store and while they did not come with the zip-on suspenders found with the Dainese Teren pants (review) (I own a pair), they did have the attachment loops sewed into the front, as well as the zipper along the backside waistline.
I transferred the suspenders from my Teren Pants and intend to sell them shortly.
The slight downside is that it doesn't appear Dainese markets the suspenders anywhere at the moment if one wanted to purchase individually."
From "C.J." (March 2015): "Thank you for the very thorough reviews -- much appreciated. Regarding your comment about suspenders, there should be a zipper at the rear, near the top of the pants. Dainese sells a suspender kit that can be attached via that zipper.