Review: Dainese Racing 4 Leather Jacket

Review: Dainese Racing 4 Leather Jacket

Dainese takes what it learns at the premiere level of world championship road racing and applies it to its street products. The Racing 4 leather jacket is a solid choice for both the serious sport rider and the casual tourer, and everybody in between.

The jacket is made from premium Tutu cowhide and its athletic trim has a surprisingly tailored feel and fit right off the rack. The Racing 4 is cut to avoid binding or bunching in the tuck position, with critical junctions at shoulders and elbows allowing freedom of movement over the entire natural range of motion of the arms.

There’s also an extended tail that ensures the lower back is never exposed, even when leaned forward.  

Although it’s best suited for warm weather riding in spring and summer, the Racing 4 is highly versatile. It provides warmth in cooler climates as well and, with a decent undershirt or layering, works well in winter.

For airflow, the jacket’s main panels (front and back) are perforated. A breathable liner with a silver ion antibacterial treatment augments the cooling effect.

However, there are no arm vents, which means things heat up a bit when stopped in hot weather. Once moving, though, everything is fine.

That Italian Flare

The jacket has a classic Dainese style with Italian flair and proud branding across the chest. However, the focus is on protection and Racing 4 sports external aluminum plates on the shoulders.

Not only are they a distinctive design element, but they are implemented to allow sliding in a fall, providing exceptional abrasion resistance and reducing the chances of dangerous rolling, twisting, and tumbling on the pavement. As an added touch, the branded shoulder plates are interchangeable.

Composite protectors at elbows and shoulders come standard—with a personal recommendation to add the back protector. You can even go a step further and add a floating chest protector.

Out In The Real World

The Tutu leather is premium quality, providing a soft feel while staying water- and oil-repellent. Pockets are limited to two relatively small zippered outer units and one zippered inside pocket (not waterproof).

The zipper tabs can be difficult to find with gloves on. There are adjustment straps at the hips for a more snug fit.

The jacket works great with Kevlar-reinforced jeans for a casual look and feel. You can also mate it to a pair of Dainese leather pants with the waist zipper, which keeps the top and bottom together for maximum safety.

The Racing 4 jacket has some heft to it, but the weight disappears once you don it. I have to grumble about the front main zipper, though. When pulled all the way up, it props the collar upright, which rubs the underside of your chin and can chafe if you turn your head a lot while riding.

Overall, the Dainese Racing 4 leather jacket is a quality product, providing good looks, tasteful design, and superior protection.  

Dainese 4 Leather Jacket
Sizes 34-54
Colors: Black/Black, Black/Fluorescent Red, Charcoal Gray/Black, Lava Red/Black, White/Black