Last year I reviewed the Richa Airstorm WP Jacket and Softshell Mesh Pants and liked them. So when I saw that Richa was introducing the new Brutus GTX jacket and pants, I reached out to Richa to see if I could do a review. They immediately agreed and also sent a pair of Atlantic GTX gloves. This combo makes for an ideal setup for spring riding.
The newly-released Brutus GTX Jacket is a multi-season textile motorcycle adventure jacket for around $670. It features a Gore-Tex Paclite waterproof liner, a thermal liner, mesh panels for ventilation, and D3O CE Level 1 protection at the shoulders and elbows.
I tested the jacket on two different bikes. The first was a touring/cruiser (Yamaha Stratoliner), and the second was a standard/naked (Kawasaki ZRX) bike.
I received the jacket in April, which is ideal for testing a jacket that includes both a waterproof and thermal layer.
Richa dates back to 1952 when company founder Charles Rigaux launched his first pair of leather motorcycle gloves. His goal was quality, which remained a priority throughout later RICHA collections.
Richa grew, creating leather motorcycle clothing, including motorcycle jackets, pants, and accessories with high-tech coatings and advanced D3O® protection. Since 2011, Richa gloves have been GORE-TEX® certified. In 2015, Richa also received a GORE-TEX® license for their motorcycle clothing.
Today, Richa is a trusted motorcycle apparel brand sold in over 40 countries worldwide. They offer a full range of products for any budget, staying true to the Richa motto: ‘Feel safe, feel good.’
I would like to thank Stijn and the folks at Richa for providing the opportunity to review the Richa Brutus GTX Jacket.
Richa Brutus GTX Jacket Features
The Richa Brutus GTX Jacket comes loaded with weather and abrasion protection features.
Waterproof removable in and over Gore-Tex paclite® plus 2layer jacket
3D mesh panels at the chest with Cam Lock zipper and magnet closure
Airtech Control System (ACS)
Accordion stretch panels at elbows
Removable thermal lining
D3O L1 protection at shoulders and elbows
Cordura 600D oxford fabric combined with ripstop panels
For a complete list of features, visit Richa’s product page.
First Impressions of the Richa Brutus GTX Jacket
My first impression was that the jacket appeared to be a well put together piece of riding gear. I liked the black styling and subtle branding. After slipping the jacket on, it had an excellent fit with loads of adjustability. The flexibility is the thing that popped for me. This jacket could be used on a trip with varying weather conditions without carrying additional gear.
Richa Brutus GTX Jacket Construction
Cordura 600D Oxford fabric is used in high-impact areas at the shoulders and elbows and is combined with ripstop panels. This construction allows for an abrasion-resistant jacket.
Outer Shell: 100% Polyester
Lining: 100% Polyester
Nylon mesh lines the interior throughout for increased airflow and comfort.
The collar features a neoprene edge to minimize chafing and added comfort. In addition, the collar has a small velcro tab to attach to the opposite side for a secure fit. A small loop on the tab end, combined with a hook on the collar, allows the collar to be folded back.
So many pockets! There are eight pockets on the shell plus 2 in the thermal liner:
Two large cargo-style pockets on the front. These have a velcro flap closure with a rolled top for waterproofing.
Two slash pockets behind the cargo pockets with a snap closure.
One large pocket on the lower back. Again, with a velcro flap closure and rolled top for waterproofing.
One zippered lapel pocket between the main zipper and storm flap
Interior: Two large pockets with velcro tab closures
Thermal Liner: Two interior pockets with a velcro tab closure
There are many areas on this jacket that provide reflectivity:
Two on the back
Four on the chest
One on each shoulder
One on each arm
Some of the branding logos are also reflective
The reflective bands are very subtle in the daylight.
The Brutus GTX I tested is not a high visibility jacket during the day, but it certainly is for night riding. Also, hi-viz color options are available in some markets for daytime riding.
The ‘Richa’ name is on the front right pocket and lower back. The Richa ‘R’ logo is on the upper back, upper arms, and the left chest. Gore-Tex and D3O labeling is also displayed.
Branding on the black Brutus jacket is subtle.
The main zipper is sizable and has a glove-friendly pull tab. Additional zippers can be found on the following:
Gore-Tex and thermal liner
A short and 360 connection between the jacket and pants
All the zippers seemed to work smoothly.
The Richa Brutus GTX Jacket is available in four colors: Blue, Black/Flo Yellow, Grey, and Black. Revzilla carries Grey and Black only.
Waterproof Inner Liner
The Richa Brutus GTX uses a Gore-Tex Paclite 2L plus liner. The liner attaches with two short zippers on the chest and snapped loop at the collar. Paclite Plus uses a two-layer unlined construction. The Gore-Tex layer is laminated to a resistant outer layer for durability. An abrasion-resistant treatment to the inner surface makes them thin, light, and highly packable. While also being waterproof, windproof, and breathable.
The liner has a separate zippered closure with a snapped flap for wind and rain protection. The liner can be either zipped into the jacket or worn as an outer rain shell.
Thermal Inner Liner
The Richa Brutus GTX also includes a thermal liner. The liner attaches to the outer shell or Gore-Tex liner with two short zippers on the chest and a snap at the collar. When connected to the Gore-Tex liner, it also fastens with color-coded snaps and loops at the bottom of the arms.
The liner includes two internal pockets. Additionally, the liner includes a mesh panel down the back for additional comfort.
Richa Brutus GTX Jacket Overall Build Quality
The Richa Brutus GTX jacket sizes vary depending on color and where you live.
Regular S, M, L, XL, 2XL, 3XL, 4XL, 5XL, 6XL
Short M, L, XL, 2XL, 3XL, 4XL, 5XL, 6XL
Tall S, M, L, XL, 2XL, 3XL, 4XL
Use the Richa sizing chart when ordering. For example, I wear an XL for most jackets. At the time of the order, I was 6’3′′ tall with a 47” chest. The Richa chart put me in a size 3XL.
I ordered the 3XL Tall to account for my long torso. The sleeve length was more than ample when seated on either of my bikes.
This jacket’s size and color selections are extensive.
I found the jacket to be easy to wear. In addition, I found it to be very comfortable during the early season. The two liners provide waterproofing and warmth to expand the temperature range. The neoprene-edged collar also allowed neck comfort.
The Richa Brutus GTX Jacket has a few features to help adjust its fit:
Adjustable straps on each side near the waist
Adjustable elastic cord at the bottom
Zippers at the cuff
Adjustable tabs at the wrists
Velcro on collar
Adjustable straps at the biceps and forearms
Accordion stretch panels at the elbows and biceps
The cuff adjustment allows for an easy fit into a glove with gauntlets and opens wide enough to put the top of your gloves inside if desired.
Richa Brutus GTX Jacket Functionality
The Richa Brutus GTX uses a Gore-Tex Paclite 2L Plus liner. As mentioned earlier, this liner can be zipped into the shell or worn externally.
I try to do a rain test on any gear claiming to be waterproof. This test could be done by either riding in the rain (preferred) or spraying myself with a hose. In this case, with rain in the forecast, I headed out on a 40 km ride. In this case, I chose to wear the liner zipped into the jacket as I felt that would be the typical setup. I did not include the thermal liner to ensure I could feel if any rain made its way through.
The Richa Brutus GTX worked great. In steady rain with intermittent heavy rain, I stayed completely dry. As well, the main jacket did an excellent job of shedding water.
The sheets of paper towels I inserted in each front roll top pocket also remained dry. Although the pockets are on the outside of the waterproof liner, the vinyl lining and roll-top did the job during my limited testing.
How would I see myself using the Gore-Tex liner?
There is no rain in the forecast? Pack the liner in the rear pouch or on the bike.
Rain in the forecast? Pack the liner and throw it on over top of the jacket.
Is it raining when I head out? Zip the liner in, or wear it on the outside.
I believe Richa created the liner in bright orange for a reason. Being seen is always important, in the rain even more so. The liner is very bright and would add to your safety when riding in the rain. Not to mention the lovely glow it adds to your skin tone. The only drawback of the color is that it makes it hard to use as a stand-alone destination jacket.
I would conclude that the Richa Brutus GTX will keep dry and warm when touring.
The Brutus GTX Jacket has built-in mesh panels on the chest and zippered vents on the arms and back. Richa refers to their ventilation system as ACS (Airtech Control System).
The large chest panels open easily with vertical zippers and horizontal velcro. After opening the zipper, simply fold the flap back at an angle, and the panel is held open with magnets. The large opening allows more airflow as compared to just opening the zipper.
The arm and back vents offer a zipper backed by mesh.
I was able to use the Brutus GTX Jacket in many weather conditions, from 5 C (40 F) (in combination with the Gore-Tex and thermal liners) to 28 C (82 F). At no time did I feel uncomfortable. Unfortunately, I performed this review in the spring, which prevented testing in hot and humid conditions. But, I can confidently say that the jacket flows air very well.
I always wear a jacket while riding, plus I tend to run hot naturally. So I think the Richa Brutus GTX Jacket would work great in all but the hottest conditions.
The Brutus GTX Jacket offers several layers of protection:
Outer shell made of Cordura 600D Oxford fabric in combination with ripstop panels
D3O CE Level 1 protection in shoulders and elbows
Protection is one area that the Brutus GTX Jacket could improve. I have tested jackets (including one currently being tested) in a lower price range that use the higher CE Level 2 armor (although not D3O) and include back protection.
The label below indicates that the Brutus jacket is fitted with CE Level 1 back protection. However, this is not the case, and no back protection was included with the jacket.
However, this jacket does give you the option to add back and chest protection and upgrade the back, chest, elbow, and shoulder protection.
EN17092-4:2020 is a standards document specifying general requirements for CE certification. The standard includes but is not limited to impaction, abrasion resistance, tear strength, seam strength, and dimensional stability.
Classification AAA: The highest level
Classification AA: More suited to touring gear
Classification A: Deemed suitable for urban riding
Classification B is similar to A, but impact protectors are not required
Classification C covers garments such as the mesh under-suits that have impact protection for off-road riding
The types of armor used in this jacket are:
Shoulder Certified (EN 1621-1:2012; S TYPE A; Protection level: 1 )
Elbow Certified (EN 1621-1:2012; E TYPE A; Protection level: 1 )
EN1621-1 is a Certification Standard for Shoulders, Elbows, and Knees. Protector Style S = Shoulder, E = Elbow, K = Knee, FB = Full Back. Type A has smaller dimensions, and Protection Level 1 offers lower protection than Level 2).
The best way to keep the jacket looking good was to wipe it down with a damp cloth. If the jacket gets very dirty, remove all armor and machine wash it on a gentle cycle and hang it to dry. If you get caught in the rain, let it drip dry.
The cleaning instructions for the Gore-Tex liner are more specific.
Here are the attached instructions on the jacket:
RICHA offers a 2-year warranty on the full collection: motorcycle jackets, pants, jeans, gloves, rain clothing, functional underwear, boots, and shoes. In addition, RICHA products produced with the GORE-TEX membrane (e.g., waterproofing and breathability) are subject to the GORE-TEX “Guaranteed to keep you dry” warranty.
I received the Richa Brutus GTX Jacket in early April, it is now early June, and I have used it on every ride this spring.
On warmer days, I used the jacket without the liners installed. Then, I would add the Gore-Tex liner for the rain, and on colder days, I would add the additional thermal liner. I think this combination will cover all seasons of riding. The only time I would switch to a full mesh jacket is in hot and humid conditions.
It doesn’t have the latest Gore-Tex Pro laminated technology, but it does offer the flexibility to use the Gore-Tex liner as an outer layer. This also helps reduce costs, as this is one of Richa’s lower-priced Gore-Tex jackets. Unfortunately, nothing with Gore-Tex branding is entry-level.
I enjoyed the subtle styling, comfort, weather protection, and D3O CE Level 1 protection—all for about $630. It would be nice to see Level 2 armor, but overall I think this is a good value given its flexibility.