Date reviewed: October 2021 | Tested by: Steve Lamb | Price: £299.99 & £199.99 | www.wolf-moto.com
I've been wearing the Wolf Titanium Outlast® jacket and trousers over the winter (lockdown allowing) and well into the Summer on a range of bikes including Harley-Davidson's Fat Boy 144, Triumph's Street Twin and my own Ducati Scrambler Classic.
In that time I've racked up over 1500 miles through torrential downpours, summer heat and pretty much everything in between. So how did Wolf's entry level Textiles hold up?
The Wolf Titanium jacket and trousers fall between two extremes of the two constructions methods, with full laminate at one end (the pricey end) and an outer with removeable waterproof and thermal liners at the cheaper end. The Wolf Titanium has a separate, removeable thermal liner, but the waterproof liner, while not bonded to the outer shell as with laminates, is enclosed within the construction of the jacket – between the outer shell and the internal mesh comfort liner.
While this can compromise performance when in extreme conditions (particularly with breathability), the manufacturing method is more economic and is therefore more widely used on more budget friendly textiles.
In terms of fit, the Wolf Titanium textiles are designed to have a slighty more sporty, tighter silhouette and this is reflected in the jacket which while in my normal size, is a snug fit – not tight, but snug.
At below average height (5'6") I often find the leg length an issue with bike gear, but thankfully, the Wolf Titanium trousers are available with a short leg option, and I found the trouser fit to be excellent both on and off the bike.
As you would expect with any new kit, the Wolf Titanium jacket and trousers are both fully CE certified, being rated to 2016/425 Level A – the lowest level of protection (Level B is technically lower but is for items which require the additional wearing of protection such as under armour). That being said, Level A certified kit still gives great levels of protection while being able to focus on comfort in areas which are less vulnerable to impacts (such as under the arms and between the legs).
The jacket is fitted with D30 T5 EVO Pro X Level 2 armour at the shoulders and elbows and has a pocket in the back for a D3O viper Level 2 back protector (available from Wolf as an accessory at £24.99). It's a shame that the back protector is not included within the base price, but it's understandable that the budget friendly price has to be reflected in the spec.
The trousers are also fitted with D30 T5 EVO Pro X Level 2 armour in the knees and have pockets in the hips for additional armour (while no armour is currently listed in the Wolf site, RST's Contour plus Level 2 armour is available at £16.99).
For night riding, both the jacket and trousers have several reflective panels to aid visibility - a real boon on predominantly black clothing.
From April 21 2018, all new motorcycle clothing is deemed to be Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). To meet this legislation, it must be tested to a recognised standard. For more information on the new laws, click here.
As textiles lend themselves to touring and daily commuting, a good selection of pockets is essential for holding the usual selection of nick-nacks that we seem to need to carry, and on first sight, the Wolf Titanium jacket seems well equipped.
On further inspection though, the large breast mounted zips open to reveal vents rather than pockets, leaving just two vertically opening waist pockets on the front of the jacket. I'm always nervous of vertical openings as it's so easy to forget to zip them up and for everything to fall out. These pockets have waterproof zips to keep the insides dry, but, on the jacket tested here, this made the zips very stiff – especially when wearing gloves. One pocket is considerably stiffer tahn the other, which to me suggests a minor manufacturing fault.
The lack of front pockets is made up for to some degree with a large map pocket on the back of the jacket, and is, I guess, in keeping with the sports nature of the jacket, but I would have liked either a chest pocket, or horizontal pockets on the waist for peace of mind.
Inside, the jacket has two generous, zipped pockets which, being mounted inboard of the waterproof liner, provide a safe environment for your phone or wallet, but these pockets are only accessible if the thermal liner isn't installed – there are no pockets or access holes in the liner.
The trousers have two horizontal, waterproof zipped pockets at the groin only – the zips on the legs cover vents.
The main fastening of the jacket is a nicely sized MAX branded zip which, while not waterproof, is covered by double storm flaps which are secured with both hook-and-loop and poppers.
The neck is secured with a large flap, held in place with a popper, while the sleeves have hook-and-loop tabs to secure them.
The trousers are fastened via a zip fly with a popper to secure the waits tab and a further hook-and-loop equipped belt which loops through the closure tabs and fastens on itself. The ankles are secured with zips which are also covered by storm flaps, held closed with hook and loop.
Finally, a zip secures the trousers and jacket together, though this zip is secured to the jacket lining rather than the outer, and so is designed more to prevent rain and drafts than to provide additional protection in the event of a spill.
Starting at the very top of the jacket and working down, the collar is adjustable via two straps which double back on themselves and secure with hook and loop, allowing you to get a secure closure against the rain, while staying comfortable thanks to an elasticated corduroy panel at the very front – a nice touch!
The arms have straps and poppers at the bicep and at the forearm, to allow a tight fit and elimination of any annoying flapping or to allow some extra room should you want to wear a thicker base layer. The cuffs are secured with hook and look tabs, but I found that these couldn't be closed quite as tight as zipped cuffs can be, or as tight as I'd have liked.
The waist can be pinched in (or eased out) with mesh straps, though the range of adjustment here is limited by the length of the strap. Elasticated panels down each side of the waist ensure that the jacket fits snuggly, but it is nice to have additional support from the straps.
The trouser waist is also nicely elasticated (for trips back from the burger van), while twin straps allow you to cinch in the waist if required. There is some adjustment at the ankle cuff, though, due to the zip fastening, this is limited to minor adjustment of the storm flap rather than being able to cinch the ankle any further.
As mentioned above, the two large zips on the jacket breast can be opened (very easily, thanks to large zip toggles) to allow some additional air to enter the jacket while keeping the main fastened secured. These are paired with two slightly smaller (and harder to reach) vents on the back shoulder blades to allow warm air to vent out.
The trousers have thigh length vents which work well on the bike to give some fresh air to your lower (ahem) parts.
Of course, the vents will only provide direct airflow without the thermal liners installed, but then if you are looking for airflow, you probably won't need the liners.
I managed to pick the hottest day of the year (so far) to test the venting properly and found that while they worked very well at motorway speeds (even giving the feeling that the jacket had inflated slightly), at lower speeds on a faired bike such as Honda's NC750X, incoming airflow was quite limited – especially if you are wearing a rucksack, when the majority of the vents (front and rear) could be covered by straps.
The Outlast® reference in the textile's title refers to the thermal liners which come fitted in both the jacket and the trousers.
A material initially developed by NASA (yes, another one!), and uses 'phase change materials' to absorb, store and release heat. In laymen's terms, the liners have a rubberised external finish which, while initially feeling cold to the touch, quickly warms up and stores that heat from your body heat, then, as your body cools, passes some of that stored heat back to help maintain an even temperature. This allows a much thinner lining than a more traditional liner which relies more on material thickness to provide insulation.
In practise, I couldn’t honestly feel a night and day difference from more traditional liners. Without doing some kind of back-to-back testing, I doubt anyone could, but that’s not to say the liners don't do a great job of keeping you warm, because they do. Even after a full day of wet riding in single figure temperatures, the Wolf Titanium textiles feel snug and warm. For riding in sub-zero conditions, you may wish to consider some heated kit, but for the majority of UK daily commutes, these are ideal.
On the same day as testing the Wolf Fortitude laminated textiles, I also tested these Wolf Titanium textiles and with the same intent – get as wet as possible – I spent a good couple of hours in torrential rain and purposely riding in the spray kicked up from the many HGVs that seem to perpetually inhabit our local Motorways.
Despite the kit being fully wetted out, I stayed completely dry underneath. As with any textiles, I had taken time to ensure that all fastening were fully closed and that the neck fastening was secured, and adjusted correctly to prevent any wicking or seeping, but the Wolf Titanium textiles performed brilliantly and, in my mind, well beyond most expectations for kit in this price range.
Once back home safe and sound, it took around 48 hours at ambient temperatures for the jacket to fully dry out, so if you are relying on these as your only kit for daily commutes, you may need to introduce some additional heat to aid drying.
If the styling of more traditional touring or adventure textiles don’t appeal, or if you ride a sportsbike and prefer a closer fitting style, these Wolf Titanium textiles may be exactly what you are looking for. The tighter fit and less cluttered styling give them a more streamlined silhouette, though this does mean that additional external pockets are sacrificed, but overall I was really impressed with the performance of the Wolf Titanium Textiles, especially in the rain, and would recommend these in a heartbeat.