The Best Cruiser Motorcycle Jackets for 2021

If you’re a dedicated cruiser rider, then you’re going to need a dedicated cruiser jacket. What you need is something safe, secure, comfortable, and stylish that won’t look out of place as you’re rumbling along into the sunset. Of course, that kind of protection can be offered by the latest sports jacket or adventure-touring threads, but those choices might look a little out of place.

So, slide on your cruiser-style boots, and strap up your open-face helmet, because we’re going to take you through some of the best cruiser jackets currently on the market. Let’s get started.

Recommendations by Segment:

 

Entry-Level

Priced under $300, these jackets prioritize value for money.

See: Entry Level Jackets

Mid-Range

Priced under $500, mid-range jackets offer a great blend of protection and features.

See: Mid-Range Jackets

High-End

$500+, featuring top-notch construction and materials.

See: High-End Jackets

A note about our recommendations:

There’s a lot of fake “review sites” online today. We get it. We aren’t one of them. Founded in 2000, the team at wBW has extensively tested more than 2,500 pieces of gear. Helmets, jackets, boots, gloves, accessories, and more. We extensively and exhaustively test gear. We do not fluff reviews. Read our review policies.


Priced under $300

Best Entry Level Cruiser Motorcycle Jackets

Icon Mesh AF Jacket

Icon Mesh AF Jacket

Price: $180

Where to Buy

Buy this Jacket on Revzilla

Why?

Not a traditional-looking cruiser jacket, but definitely all the airflow you could ever want on a hot day and all the impact protection you deserve while riding the street.

Specs, Head Shape, & More

Specs:

  • Icon Attack Fit
  • Durable textile chassis
  • Removable D3O CE Level 1 certified back, elbow and shoulder armor
  • Pre-curved arms
  • Reflective accents

Protection & Safety

Icon’s Mesh AF Jacket is perfect for warmer weather. Mesh panels combined with ballistic nylon make this jacket both breezy and abrasion resistant where it counts.

The jacket comes standard with a complete set of CE Level 1 D3O elbow, shoulder and back armor, which puts this jacket a head above the rest in this price category. Adjustability in the sleeves and waist allows for a tailored fit and keeps you focused on the road ahead.

 

Merlin Wesley Jacket

Merlin Wesley Jacket

Price: $224

Where to Buy

Buy this Jacket on Revzilla

Why?

For a super casual look and feel both on and off the bike without sacrificing protection from the street.

Specs, Head Shape, & More

Specs:

  • Halley Stevensons 10oz super dry, soft cotton outer with a water repellent treatment
  • 100% DuPont™ Kevlar® twill shoulder, elbow and back panels
  • Removable CE Level 2 elbow and shoulder armor
  • Pocket for optional back protector (sold separately)
  • Ribbed cuffs and hem
  • Four outer pockets and three internal storage pockets
  • Traditional tartan lining
  • YKK zippers throughout
  • Central zipper includes a wind flap behind
  • YKK jacket-to-pants zipper

Protection & Safety

The Merlin Wesley Jacket is designed to look like a casual bomber jacket and is constructed of 10oz cotton with a water repellent treatment. Inside the shell, the Wesley features DuPont™ Kevlar® at the shoulders, elbows and back, providing incognito abrasion resistance where it’s truly needed.

CE level 2 armor in the elbows and shoulders is standard, which is impressive at this price. Back impact protection will need to be purchased separately or borrowed from your current jacket. A surprise jacket-to-pants zipper is also included, adding to the low profile abrasion resistance and protection factor of this seemingly casual jacket.

 

Reax Folsom Leather Jacket

 

Reax Folsom Leather Jacket

Price: $250

Where to Buy

Buy this Jacket on Revzilla

Why?

Classic styling in buffalo leather with modern touches like zippered venting, fantastic armor, and adjustability for a tailored fit – in a very affordable package.

Specs, Head Shape, & More

Specs:

  • Oiled Buffalo leather 1.3mm – 1.4mm thick
  • SAS-TEC CE Level 2 elbow and shoulder armor
  • Pocket for optional back protector (Back protector sold separately)
  • Articulated sleeves
  • Lateral shoulder gussets
  • Reinforced double-layer elbows
  • Chest pocket vents
  • Back exhaust vents
  • Snapback collar
  • Zippered cuffs
  • Adjustable waist
  • Moisture-wicking stretch mesh lining
  • Hand pockets with key clip
  • Interior cargo pockets
  • Interior waterproof device pocket
  • Interior belt/jeans loops
  • YKK zippers
  • Two (2) year warranty on materials and workmanship
  • SM-MD use MD Nucleon Back Protector
  • LG-XL use LG Nucleon Back Protector

Protection & Safety

This jacket combines exceptional abrasion resistance from 1.3 mm buffalo leather and top-of-the-line SAS-TEC CE Level 2 elbow and shoulder armor for an impressive package at an even more impressive price.

The Reax Folsom jacket also includes extra layering at the elbows and a belt loop connection to assist even further with abrasion resistance in a get-off. It does not come with a back protector, so that will need to be purchased separately or stolen from your current jacket setup.

To keep you cool and focused on the road ahead, a mesh lining, zippered intake vents in the chest and zippered exhaust vents on the back keep the air flowing. Articulated sleeves and shoulder gussets help battle fatigue from holding the handlebars on a day-long ride. Adjustability in the waist provides a more tailored fit and also helps keep the jacket in place while riding or (hopefully not) sliding.


Priced Under $500

Best Mid-Range Cruiser Motorcycle Jackets

First Manufacturing Top Performer Jacket

 

First Manufacturing Top Performer Jacket

Price: $300

Where to Buy

Buy this Jacket on Revzilla Buy this Jacket on Amazon

Pairs with: First Manufacturing Smarty Pants

Why?

Classic cruiser styling with fantastic reviews from real riders and industry professionals alike. Note: “generous” cut means extremely generous – size down one level (example: from Large to Medium) from your normal jacket/shirt size.

Specs, Head Shape, & More

Specs:

  • Generous American cut
  • Single snap mandarin collar
  • Padded shoulder detail
  • Two vented chest pockets
  • Two lower zip pockets
  • Zipper vent on each sleeve
  • Padded elbow and kidney area
  • Zippered cuff
  • Two inner pockets
  • Grommets under each arm
  • Snap side tab adjustment
  • Full sleeve zip out liner
  • Pockets for optional armor (sold separately)

Protection & Safety

The style of the First Manufacturing Top Performer jacket is what will initially catch your eye, but the long list of features is what will really surprise you.

A leather chassis lends itself to the best abrasion resistance you can get and increased durability for everyday use. The shoulders, elbows, and kidneys are padded, but CE rated armor is not included, so you’ll need to upgrade if you want exceptional impact protection.

A mandarin style collar is comfortable for all-day wear and keeps you focused on the road ahead. A removable full sleeve liner is included, keeping you warm in cooler weather and allowing some versatility when the temps increase.

Most impressive when it comes to the First Manufacturing Top Performer Jacket is the plethora of 5 star reviews from riders and industry professionals alike. That speaks volumes and puts this jacket on our favorites list for Winter 2020.

 

REV’IT! Stealth 2 Hoody

REV’IT! Stealth 2 Hoody

Price: $375

Where to Buy

Buy this Jacket on Revzilla

Why?

Super cool modern cafe styling with all the protection you need.

Specs, Head Shape, & More

Specs:

  • Outer Shell: Cordura stretch denim 3L
  • Waterproofing: Laminated hydratex 3L pro membrane (10000 mm H2O)
  • Breathability: Hydratex 3L pro (7000 g/m2/24hrs)
  • Insulation: Detachable thermal vest liner
  • Composition: Outer shell: 46% cotton, 24% polyester, 19% Polyamide, 11% modal
  • Protective layer: 100% polyamide elbows
  • Seesmart CE-level 1 protection at shoulders and elbows, double layers of PWR|shield at elbow
  • Back protector (sold separately): Seesoft Back Protector -Type RV
  • Type RV / Size 04 fits SM-MD
  • Type RV / Size 05 fits LG-2XL
  • Visibility: Laminated reflection at top of back
  • Fit: City fit, regular
  • Features: Drain holes in pockets,PWR|shell stretch at cuffs and hem
  • Pockets: Stash pockets, document pocket, inner pocket

Protection & Safety

The REV’IT! Stealth 2 Hoody combines practicality and function in a super cool and casual package. The Stealth 2 has a removable thermal vest liner that doubles as a freestanding destination layer. The outer shell is made of Cordura stretch denim 3L, keeping the appearance casual while maintaining superior abrasion resistance. A waterproof hydratex liner is laminated to the shell, protecting you from inclement weather that is inevitable in the cooler months.

Major impact zones are reinforced with two layers of abrasion resistance for extra protection in a get-off. Seesmart CE Level 1 armor is included in the shoulders and elbows, but only a pocket for a back protector is provided, so the armor will need to be purchased separately or stolen from your current jacket.

There’s a belt loop connector and a connection zipper so you can attach this jacket to a multitude of pants. Reflective panels on the back of the jacket help your odds of being seen at night while other road users are around.

 

Merlin Alton Jacket

 

Merlin Alton Jacket

Price: $314

Where to Buy

Buy this Jacket on Revzilla

Why?

Look like a professional badass and protect yourself from the evil streets while doing it.

Specs, Head Shape, & More

Specs:

  • Aniline matte leather finish
  • Removable 100g thermal vest liner featuring Marton Mills tartan panels
  • CE Level 1 shoulder and elbow armor
  • Back foam pad
  • Pocket for optional back protector (sold separately)
  • Mesh drop liner for improved breathability and comfort
  • YKK zippers used throughout
  • Ventilation points
  • Multiple pockets
  • Waist adjustment
  • Short YKK jacket-trouser connecting zipper

Protection & Safety

The Merlin Alton jacket oozes cafe cool and features an abrasion resistant leather chassis with a soft matte finish. CE Level 1 armor is included in the shoulders and elbows, while a foam back pad is all you’ll get in the back protector pocket, so a separate purchase is necessary.

A thermal vest liner, which keeps your core warm, can be removed as the outside temps rise. The mesh liner improves breathability when rolling, keeping you focused on the road ahead.

A waist adjustment allows for a more tailored fit, while the pants-to-jacket connection zipper improves the safety factor by keeping the jacket in its place during a get-off.

Icon Stormhawk Waterproof Jacket

 

Icon Stormhawk Waterproof Jacket

Price: $315

Where to Buy

Buy this Jacket on Revzilla

Pairs with: Icon Stormhawk WP Pants

Why?

Simple, sleek, and extremely comfortable 3-season waterproof jacket.

Specs, Head Shape, & More

Specs:

  • ICON® Relaxed Fit
  • Hycor Membrane Waterproof/Breathable Chassis
  • Jacket Tested and Certified According to FprEN 17092-4:2018 Class A
  • D30® LP1 Removable Shoulder, Elbow, and Back Impact Protectors – EN 1621-2:2014 / EN 1621-1:2012, Level 1, T-, T+
  • Full Length Removable Liner, YKK® Matte Finish Waterproof Zippers, Front and Back Zipper Vents, Jacket/Pant Interlock System

Protection & Safety

The Stormhawk jacket is weatherproof with the essential breathable waterproof membrane riders demand, keeping the jacket lightweight and reducing fatigue. A unique feature includes internal abrasion resistance from 600 Denier polyester.

The Stormhawk comes standard with the newest in armor advancements, D3O CE-Certified LP1 impact protectors, in the shoulders and elbows. This armor is hailed as more breathable and flexible than previous generations of impact protectors, improving the jacket’s overall comfort without sacrificing protection. A D3O CE Level 1 Viper back protector is also included, rounding out the full impact suite.

For warmth in chilly conditions during Spring and Fall, a full-length insulated liner is included. For warmer conditions, large exterior front & back vents, sealed with YKK® Aquagard™ zippers, provide significant airflow. The Stormhawk jacket can be worn alone or can be zipped directly to the Icon Stormhawk pants, assisting further with abrasion resistance and creating a slick touring suit.


Priced $500+

Best High-End Cruiser Motorcycle Jackets

Scorpion EXO 1909 Jacket

Scorpion EXO 1909 Jacket

Price: $500

Where to Buy

Buy this Jacket on Revzilla Buy this Jacket on Amazon

Why?

A sleek leather jacket with tons of functionality and major projection.

Specs, Head Shape, & More

Specs:

  • Soft distressed leather
  • Sas-Tec Level 2 armor at elbows and shoulders
  • Pocket at back for optional Sas-Tec back protector (sold separately)
  • Perforated panels underarms and sides of torso
  • Two zippered rear vents
  • Leather overlays at elbows
  • 4 external pockets
  • Rib stretch panels as side hems
  • Rear waist adjustment tabs
  • Zipper closures at wrists
  • Antique Brass YKK zippers throughout
  • Padded comfort collar
  • Two internal mesh pockets
  • Removable EverHeat jacket liner with Kwikwick panels
  • 8” jacket to pant zipper and rear belt loop attachment tab

Protection & Safety

Scorpion’s nod to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the legends that were born there on two wheels, the 1909 Jacket seamlessly combines nostalgia with modern technology. The chassis is constructed beautifully with a soft distressed leather, which lends itself to the abrasion resistance you deserve on the street.

Fantastic impact protection in the form of CE Level 2 SAS-Tec armor comes standard in the elbows and shoulders. A back protector pocket is included, but the armor itself will need to be purchased separately.

Adjustability in the waist as well as ribbed side panels allow for a custom fit and will keep you comfortable and focused on the road ahead. A full removable insulated liner is also included and will keep you warm in the colder temps. Perforated panels under the arms, and zippered vents will help keep you cool in the warmer temps.

A jacket-to-pants connection zipper will keep the jacket in place during a slide, adding to the already high-level abrasion resistance.

Belstaff Brooklands 2.0 Jacket

Belstaff Brooklands 2.0 Jacket

Price: $695

Where to Buy

Buy this Jacket on Revzilla

Why?

A classy, high-end feel that mixes vintage-inspired style with modern waterproof technology and a handcrafted look.

Specs, Head Shape, & More

Specs:

  • UK-sourced 10oz waxed cotton construction
  • Bonded waterproof membrane with sealed seams
  • Abrasion resistant Cordura panels at shoulders and elbows
  • Zip-in quilted thermal liner
  • Corduroy-lined collar with buckle closure
  • Corduroy-lined adjustable cuffs and inner waist
  • Two patch pockets at chest
  • Two zippered handwarmer pockets
  • Vented underarms
  • Quilted reinforcements on shoulders and elbows
  • Buckle waist adjustment with cover to protect paint
  • Rubberized bottom snap
  • Removable D30 T5 EVO X armor at the shoulders and elbows
  • Logo patch on left sleeve
  • CE rated class A riding garment

Protection & Safety:

Cleverly crafted from 10 ounce waxed cotton for a retro look, the Brooklands 2.0 Jacket unites the vintage racer style with modern technology. The shell is a classic silhouette, but secretly hides a seam-sealed, waterproof internal membrane underneath, which guarantees dryness in even the harshest conditions. Also hidden beneath the shell are high-tenacity Cordura panels for fantastic abrasion protection in major impact zones.

Adding even more reinforcement, diamond-stitched exterior panels are located above the internal D3O T5 EVO X armor in both the shoulders and elbows. A pocket is included for a back protector, but that will need to be purchased separately.

For cooler temperatures, the Belstaff Brooklands 2.0 jacket includes a detachable heavy (150 gram) thermal liner. Cozy corduroy detailing at the inner cuffs, collar and waist help to keep your core temperature up as comfortably as possible, and these fine finishes don’t hurt the look or high-end feel, either.

Also included are adjustable neck and cuff openings, as well as vented underarms – all with durable and upscale brass hardware. Race-inspired tailoring has the Brooklands 2.0 Jacket fall higher on the hip, keeping the jacket in place when seated on a long ride or on a spin to the local coffee shop.

REV’IT! Crossroads Jacket

REV’IT! Crossroads Jacket

Price: $550

Where to Buy

Buy this Jacket on Revzilla

Why?

The perfect mixture of leather and textile in a slick package that has retro roots and modern features.

Specs, Head Shape, & More

Specs:

  • Outer Shell: 100% waxed polycotton blend
  • Sleeves: Buffalo Brisk leather
  • Insulation: Detachable thermal liner, doubles as an insulated destination liner
  • Collar: Wind tab close to block cold air intrusion, which is fully removable
  • Seesmart CE protection at shoulders and elbows
  • Back protector (sold separately): Seesoft Back Protector -Type RV / Size 04 fits SM / Size 05 fits MD-2XL / Size 06 fits 3XL
  • Fit: City fit, regular
  • Adjustability: Snap adjustment at waist
  • Features: Comfort panels, zippered V-flap closure at cuff
  • Pockets: Waist pockets, inner pockets, chest pockets

Protection & Safety:

The REV’IT Crossroads Jacket is constructed of Cordura denim on the torso and Buffalo Brisk leather on the sleeves to create a badass look that doesn’t sacrifice protection. Both of these materials are extremely abrasion resistant and durable and will hold up to everyday wear or a slide on the asphalt.

A removable thermal liner holds in the heat when you need it, and can be left at home when the temps are high. Bonus: you can use the liner as a standalone layer once you reach your destination – two jackets in one. A special wind tab keeps the collar in place at high speeds, which helps you stay comfortable on cold rides while focusing on the road ahead.

CE Level 1 rated armor is included in the shoulders and elbows, offering fantastic impact protection. A CE rated back protector must be purchased separately or borrowed from another jacket to complete the protection suite.

Criteria & Methodology

How We Determine "The Best"

At wBW, “Best” Actually Means Something

Remember when you could open up a review of something, and when the publication – magazine, car show, whatever – said “best” they stood behind it? Yea, we remember, and we’re bringing it back.

Here’s how we do things:

  • We disclose our affiliate relationships – We make money via advertising and affiliate relationships on our website. It’s how we pay our team and invest in things like sending Jim to Italy. And Japan. And France… wait… why do we always send Jim places?
  • We obsessively hands-on test – We wear and ride with gear before reviewing it, and we update reviews down the line if our opinions change. We look at real-world situations because that’s the world we live in.
  • We’re objective – Good gear is good gear, regardless of who made it.
  • We’re value-focused – Why pay $500 if something for $250 is just as good? Our review scores and recommendations reflect best value. Brand only goes so far – the gear has to stand on its own.

Hands-on reviews of 2021’s best riding gear. More than 2,500 hands-on reviews since 1999!

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