The fit of these jackets has ever been really perfect. I had never been able to find a true summer weight vented textile jacket that met my needs for fit, protection, and ventilation so I endured just a heavy textile even in 110 degree plus temperatures. From the first time that I put the Metralla on and headed out for a ride I was a fan. And the more that I wear it, the more I like it. In fact, it was hard for me to come up with any real solid issues to list as cons for this jacket.
The Motonation Campeon gloves are a value-priced short leather glove with an MSRP of $50. They come with a few nice-to-haves, such as touchscreen-compatible fingertips and additional armor on the knuckles. These two-almost-three-season gloves are at their best from late-spring to early-fall, and having spent June 2019 to date with the Campeons as my primary daily wearers, I’ve gotten a good sense of them.
While the Campeon’s are pretty good, they aren’t perfect and have some drawbacks, the biggest of which is the lack of a proper palm slider. In Brandon’s recent review of the Alpinestars SP Air Gloves, he included a video where he explained in a bit more detail why that matters. Safety-minded folks will also want to look for a glove with a gauntlet for additional wrist protection.
Riders looking for an affordable leather glove that offers some wrist protection while remaining comfortable to wear during the hot summer months will appreciate the package offered by the Campeon.
Thank you to Jason at Motonation for providing these Campeon’s at no-cost for this review.
The Campeon comes in four colors: black, black/white, black/red, and black/yellow. I’m sporting the all-black version.
Perforated leather makes up the bulk of the glove, covering much of the glove, including the tops/sides of the fingers. Your knuckles are protected by hard plastic armor (which is not removable without modification to the glove; on the underside of the armor is a small foam pad for comfort.
The index and middle fingertips of each glove have touchscreen-compatible stitching, allowing you to clumsily operate your smartphone or other touchscreen devices. The top of the fingers are perforated from the tip to the middle knuckle, with solid leather and a rubber reinforcement protecting the top part of the finger.
The palm of each glove includes an additional layer of non-perforated leather that is double-stiched and featuring a foam pad on the palm. The pad is not a proper palm slider and is unlikely to add much in the way of protection, but it does make gripping the bars for long durations a bit more comfortable.
Keeping everything snug on your wrist is a pretty standard velcro strap setup.
The interior feels comfortable, and while the inner material isn’t “plush”, it is pleasant and comfortable enough. Often, leather gloves meant for warm-weather riding have noticeable seams and scratchiness due to the underside of the material. Thankfully, that hasn’t been my experience here.
Constructed of premium full-grain cowhide leather with high tear strength and abrasion resistance
Extra layer of leather on the palm and bottom of the fingers
Soft and comfortable interior
Extra palm pad on the base of the palm
Dual layer leather panels in the upper hand for non-binding fit
Perforated leather on back of hand, inside each finger and top of fingers
Durable plastic armor with shock absorbing memory foam on the knuckles for extra protection
High tensile strength nylon thread stitching throughout
High impact use areas double stitched
Pre-curved fingers for a snug and comfortable fit
Touch screen material on top of fingers
Neoprene panels in wrist with a hook and loop wrist strap for a snug fit
Split rubber pads on top of fingers
Accordion padding at knuckle for protection and excellent articulation
Like just about all leather gloves, the Campeon is a bit tight when you first put it on. It took a half-dozen rides or so before the leather began to relax. Once the gloves stretched a bit, they quickly became my go-to pair to wear for inner-city rides.
The interior material isn’t “soft”, but it is pleasant and comfortable. It doesn’t catch on dry skin (thanks, Alberta) and more or less fades away once you’ve got the glove on.
Per the Motonation size chart, I’m wearing an XL and my index, middle, and ring fingers each comfortably reach the end of the glove. There’s a bit of extra space on the pinky, but it isn’t excessive and it doesn’t impair my use of the glove.
For reference, my hand circumference is approximately 8″ / 20cm.
The material isn’t too heavy, but it has an appreciable weight to it. It’s not as thin as many sport-styled gloves are, and while this somewhat impairs dexterity when doing things like unscrewing water bottles or using a smartphone, it doesn’t make it any more difficult to operate switches on my helmet, and operating both the SENA SC1 in the SCHUBERTH C4 Pro and SENA SRL in the Shoei Neotec II is very comfortable and confident.
The glove covers the entire hand and wrist comfortably, extending about 1.5 -2″ down the arm. Not quite a gauntlet, but adequate coverage and protection. With a jacket on, there is no skin exposed. The cuff of the glove doesn’t comfortably tuck under the sleeve of any of the jackets I’ve worn with the Campeon’s (Fieldsfeer Suzuka, REAX Jackson, Motonation Dominator), so having a bit of material to protect the wrist is welcome.
The Campeon’s have a slight pre-curved shape to them, so your hand has a gentle curve when at rest. There’s always a loss of ability and sensation when donning thick gloves, but the Campeon’s minimize friction here thanks to their bang-on fit (your mileage may vary). I’m currently testing a Motonation Dominator leather jacket, and I’m able to easily grab the leather pulls and manipulate the zips while wearing the Campeon’s.
I’ve found that dexterity and usability are about as good as you’re going to get from this type of glove.
An area the Campeon really performs well is airflow. The generous use of perforated leather on the top and sides of the glove is effective from an airflow perspective.
It’s easy to manage though, and because of that I found that the Campeon’s were comfortable on cooler morning rides. When you’re gripping the bars, the perforated ends of the fingers wrap underneath the bar and aren’t getting air forced through them. At the same time, having a decent grip means that you’re fingers are pressed tightly together and so no airflow comes in on the sides. All it takes is an angle adjustment and you’ve got air conditioning.
A downside of all the perforation becomes apparent once it rains. I got caught in more than one rainstorm wearing these and it didn’t take long for my hands to be soaked.
Ha – you didn’t think that gloves that are 50% made of perforated leather would have any level of water resistance, did you?
For a $50 glove, the Campeon’s build is acceptable. Unfortunately, this segment of the market often comes with compromises with respect to build quality and overall construction, and the Campeon does make a few of those. At the end of the 2019 riding season, both gloves had a few loose fibers and frays that were starting to come out. This is after a good season of riding, with the gloves being used for several thousand kilometers of mixed city/highway riding.
The tops of the fingers are a mix of accordion leather, a rubber finger guard, and perforated leather. The overall finishing of the cuts and stitching is okay. The bottom of the fingers is solid leather, save for the tips of the thumb, index, and ring fingers, which have a small patch of conductive material.
Palm & Wrist
About half of the palm of the glove is reinforced with an additional layer of leather. This extra protection also features a foam palm pad, and the entire ensemble is double-stitched in. Despite the extra padding here, it does not feel bulky.
The wrist strap is a neoprene/hook & loop (velcro) unit and is pretty standard stuff.
Full-grain leather, plastic knuckle armor, and some foam/rubber reinforcements at key points is the name of the game. The Campeon does not come equipped with CE-approved armor, but between the plastic knuckle protector and the ample use of leather/foam throughout, the gloves do provide meaningful protection in all the important areas.
The Campeon also does not have a hard palm slider (but does have a foam pad in its place). These short-length gloves are not too short and provide adequate protection for the wrist as well.
For $50, It’s Hard to Take Issue With the Campeon
The Motonation Campeon’s demonstrate that you can get a lot of glove at a fair price point. $50 isn’t inexpensive, but it’s also a far cry from expensive, and so it’s important to have reasonable expectations. When you’re looking at gloves north of $75, it’s not uncommon to see superior construction, improved safety, CE-armor, and so on. In a $50 glove, the main focus is on adequate protection and comfort.
When taking that view, the Campeon comes off as a good value play. The gloves are comfortable to wear for long periods, and because they flow plenty of air, long rides won’t result in sweaty palms (unless you live somewhere hot). I have no reason to believe the Campeon’s wouldn’t provide adequate protection when needed.
The Campeon shines as a good blend between affordability, protection, comfort, and function. They provide enough protection for most riders and the look is universal enough that they can blend into just about any style. Unless you’re hitting the track or love to ride the twisties, you will be served just fine by your $50 investment in the Motonation Campeon gloves.