Date reviewed: June 2022 | Tested by: John Milbank | RRP: £269.99 (jacket) & £179.99 (trousers) | www.furygan.com
Riding in the UK can be a mixed bag – plenty of rain at time of course, but temperatures can get high too. Adventure riding kit should offer the best of both worlds, with a removable waterproof liner and plenty of vents. In this review of the Furygan Brevent jacket and Furygan Apalaches trousers, I’ll be looking at their waterproof capabilities, winter warmth, and venting for summer use. I’ve been using them on a 2001 Honda VFR800 and a 2019 BMW S1000XR to find out if they’re any good…
Being an adventure jacket means that the Furygan Brevent has a separate, removable thermal liner AND another, separate waterproof one. It’s impressive that undue bulk hasn’t been added in this as some adventure gear can feel quite clunky. Still though, you do have to take account of the fact that, when fully fitted out, there is more to this jacket than some others.
I’ve put on weight recently, and found that I needed to go to XL in the Apalaches trousers that are paired with the Brevent (though these have a fixed, non-removable waterproof liner). Furygan tends to have a slimmer cut in its products, and I should probably have gone for an XL jacket, but this is more down to my cake-retention than anything to do with the design. As with any gear, always try it on both walking around and sat on the bike to get the best fit for you.
The Brevent seems well put together, with double-stitching on the seams (one stitch hidden beneath the fold in the material, to protect the thread in a slide), and some thoughtful touches like the neoprene edging on the collar.
It’s also great to see that the attachments in the sleeves for the liners are colour-coded red and black, making it easier to avoid twisting when fitting. This is repeated in the Apalaches trousers.
The ‘brown / sand / anthracite’ colour is likely going to divide opinion; I think it’s great, but it’s also available in ‘pearl / grey / anthracite’ or ‘pearl / blue’.
My only gripe with the Brevent is that the sleeves are quite narrow, so when all the layers are in, it can make taking it off quite awkward, especially if you’ve got damp hands.
Also – and this is a very minor point – the collar flap occasionally snags gently on the bottom of my lid when turning my head clockwise. It doesn’t pull it open or restrict my movement; I can just feel it there.
Both the Furygan Brevent jacket and the Furygan Apalaches trousers are certified to EN 17092 Level AA, which is consistent with most decent textile kit now. Very few have achieved the higher AAA, but with the wide range of prices and variety available in AA, I see little reason to buy anything that only meets the lowest A standard now.
The Brevent jacket has D3O Level 1 armour in the elbows and shoulders, though there’s only a pocket for a back-protector. Furygan’s own D3O Level 2 (the highest standard) back protector costs an additional £40.99, but it is a fairly standard size, so many riders will already have one.
I wouldn’t recommend an airbag under this (even Furygan’s excellent airbag gilet), as there needs to be space for it to inflate and there aren’t any expansion areas.
The trousers are also equipped with D3O Level 1 armour at the knees and hips.
The snug fit of the Brevent in the arms does mean that the armour’s kept well in place, and the Velcro straps ensure it stays there even when the vents are opened.
For everything you need to know about the safety labels in your motorcycle kit, click here.
Adventure suits tend to have great pockets, and the Brevent has two decent-sized ones on the front waist that accommodate my Samsung Galaxy S21, as well as my wallet and keys. I’d prefer them to be a fraction wider, as my phone only sits in upright, which can mean it presses a bit on my leg when riding the VFR, but they’re not bad and I do like the horizontal opening, which gives more confidence than a vertical zip that nothing’s going to fall out if you forget to close them. There are also hand pockets behind these to slip your paws into.
Note that the main pockets are not waterproof… they even have drain holes in the bottom, though I think this is where most of the water gets in!
The rear has a fair-sized map (or ‘poacher’) pocket, though this too has drain holes in.
The small pocket on the left sleeve can take a credit-card or toll pass / token. It can be easily opened, though you’ll likely need to take your right glove off to jiggle anything out of the small opening, or to zip it back up again.
There’s a waterproof Nelson pocket on the upper left, behind the storm flap, but other than a slightly odd pair of pockets in the left of the thermal liner, that’s it.
The Furygan Apalaches trousers have average-sized hip pockets with water-resistant zips, along with a fairly waterproof cargo pocket on the left thigh, which also has a small zipped extra pocket on top of it.
As adventure kit goes, there are more accommodating pocket arrangements available, but my main issue is that I’d have liked to have seen the two front pockets being waterproof.
The Furygan Brevent has a chunky main zip with an effective storm flap behind it. The waterproof lining also has its own separate zip, which needs fastening first if it’s fitted.
The trousers come with braces, though I don’t really need them and they’re a bit clunky with the large buckles, but not uncomfortable.
The Apalaches trousers have the facility to fully zip to a jacket, but the Brevent jacket only has a small connecting zip on the rear to join the two together. The issue here is that you can’t use this if you have the braces on as they attach to it. Fortunately, the jacket is a good length, so no drafts tend to get up the back.
Despite going for the XL trousers, I do find I have to make sure the fly is properly latched down, or my belly can cause it to open up. It’d be good to have seen a catch here, rather than just Velcro and a zip.
While there are straps on the sides of the jacket and two-position poppers on the biceps, it’s the forearm Velcro straps that are most useful, holding the vents open and keeping the arms snug in order to hold the amour well in place.
There isn’t really much scope for different body sizes, and I’d have liked to see some expansion panels in place at the shoulder blade in particular. Particularly with the linings fitted, movement can be a little restricted, though certainly not dangerously so. As ever, it will come down to personal fit.
Unfortunately there’s no scope to adjust the seal of the trouser legs with boots – once zipped up, the flap simply covers over. I’ve not had problems with my Daytona Road Stars, but it is possible you could get a bit of a draft up here.
The idea of having a removable waterproof liner is that the jacket can breathe as much as possible, and introducing large vent panels is a great way to do that as you’ve no membrane to worry about.
The arm vents on the Furygan Brevent are very good, and do allow air into the jacket to move around, before escaping through the large exhaust panel on the rear. The chest vents aren’t as good as they could be though; one problem is that there’s not a huge amount of space once you’ve worked out what to do with the panels that zip open. Also, the majority of the left chest vent is blocked by the waterproof Nelson pocket that’s fitted behind it.
The back has a large vented panel with a cover that tucks down into a pocket, but there’s nothing securing it; I haven’t had it pop out and flap around like a cape, but you can sometimes feel it moving a little when riding at high speed. I’d prefer something to strap it down tight.
The Apalaches trousers just have a single vent on either thigh, but these are blocked by the waterproof drop-liner that’s fixed behind, so are far less effective than they could be.
Overall the venting on the Furygan Brevent / Apalaches is okay, if not the very best; it’s compromised by some design choices that mean there’s better for those riding nearer the equator, but for many UK riders it’s fine almost all year round.
The thermal liner and waterproof liner are both removable
I rarely use the thermal liner as the waterproof one does add warmth, but combined they work well. As the temperature drops well below 10°C, the thermal liner proves less effective than some premium versions, but it’s not bad.
It’s good to find that you can remove the waterproof liner with the thermal one still attached to it if you like, and it is possible to fit the thermal liner on its own – leaving out the waterproof one – though it’s unlikely many will need to.
I was surprised not to find a pair of trousers with a removable waterproof lining in the current Furygan range – those riding in very hot climates will likely miss this, though it might be that some people will wear the Brevent jacket with riding jeans when not in the rain.
With the thermal and waterproof linings removed, the main jacket has a mesh lining that’s comfortable against the skin. The same is featured in the trousers.
The Furygan Brevent and Apalaches trousers have a DWR (Durable Water Repellent) coating, but these are never that effective, particularly at motorway speeds. The best kit for a serious wet-weather riding is laminated, as having the membrane bonded to the back of the outer fabric means there’s less to get soaked.
Then there’s kit with a standard drop-liner, which has a membrane hanging loose behind the outer shell; the problem here is that this outer material can get fully soaked through, making it heavier, colder and stopping the membrane from breathing.
It doesn’t take much to realise that an adventure suit, with the other shell AND inner lining coming before the waterproof liner is worse still, with even more material to get soaked…
Still, I have found that I stayed totally dry in my testing of the Furygan kit in heavy rain over an hour’s ride. The front pockets did leak, but I was impressed with the performance of the storm-flap behind the main zip, which prevented any water reaching the zip of the waterproof liner.
Water does start to find its way through the arm vent zips, which makes these areas feel colder and gives the impression of being damp, but it’s not actually breaching the liner.
The Brevent and Apalaches do stay damp for a long time after a very heavy downpour, needing overnight to dry fully, which is why this type of kit isn’t the best for all-weather commuters.
The cuffs on the Brevent being rather tight means I can’t get my gloves under them, but putting them over the top is also not as tidy as it could be thanks to the Velcro adjusting strap pulling the zip with it, making it rather bulky.
Still, as long as you understand the limitations, this isn’t bad gear in the rain.
At this price there’s a fair bit of choice, but here are a few options if you’re in the market for this type of gear…
Look for light passing through vents to check how well they’re likely to perform
The Furygan Brevent jacket and Apalaches trousers are a pretty good value combination for the £450 price tag, but a few quirks hold them back from being outstanding.
However, the fact that they’re not perfect for the worst wet weather, or for the very hottest climates doesn’t mean they’re no good for the vast majority of UK riders; actually, they strike a pretty good balance and there’s a lot to like about them.
My biggest disappointment is the fact that the front jacket pockets aren’t waterproof, but other than that, this is some decent kit that could well suit may riders looking for something versatile to wear throughout all seasons in Britain.