Written by Toby Orton.
The Rapha City Rain Jacket is a top of the range breathable waterproof that backs up its high price tag despite some inevitable internal moisture buildup.
What they say: A lightweight, waterproof jacket designed to protect in very wet conditions.
What it is: When you’ve spent £200 on a breathable, waterproof cycling jacket you expect big things from it. Having ridden the Rapha rain jacket through the winter there is no doubting that this is an exceptional jacket that backs ups its technical claims.
Subtle branding, the availability of subdued shades and a tailored fit make this a purchase for riders who are keen to bring personal style into the cycling equation. On top of the great aesthetics the jacket succeeds in its essential necessity of keeping you dry. Rapha have clearly tested this jacket to death and after riding through numerous heavy downpours and coming out dry, I’m not going to upset their claims. However, despite the breathability of the technical fabric, don’t expect this jacket to prevent interior moisture build up. It doesn’t, at least not completely. It is kept to a minimum, which is impressive considering some of the other sweatbox rain jackets I’ve sampled in the past but the high price might leave some people feeling shortchanged.
Storage is kept to a minimum with one outer and one internal zipped pocket, each big enough to take a cap, gloves, keys or cards. A high fleece-lined neck and asymmetrical zip add ride comfort and for those who like the idea of showing off their Rapha allegiance, a fluorescent pink, pullout mud flap complete with large logo drops out of a zipped compartment to offer extra splash cover.
Who it’s good for: With Rapha there is often the feeling that you are paying a premium for the name but with the rain jacket the performance lives up to the hype. If you want to look good and keep dry then this is a great packable jacket to have along on any ride – even with that negligible moisture buildup.