The Scoop:

Motorcyclists are a curious lot. We hurtle over skin-shredding patches of asphalt at insane speeds with naught but a thin layer of cowhide and a prayer for protection. Gear to us is vital. We want what we wear to provide protection against wind, rain, and to keep our skin where it belongs. On our bodies. But pleasing us is no small feat. We’re an egotistical lot. We want gear that’s rugged-looking and durable and provides optimum protection while still making us look good. That’s where Icon comes in.

I scored a black Icon Accelerant Jacket to get me through this summer’s press intro season. I opened up the box it came in and inhaled a waft of fresh leather. I love that smell. It makes me feel like riding. I pulled the heavy-duty jacket out and held it up. The industrial-strength design was an instant eye-pleaser. With the new Icon jacket in my gearbag, I was ready to roll.

The Score:

My first impression of the Icon Accelerant Jacket was “Damn, I’m going to look good in this.” I told you motorcyclists are an egotistical bunch. The cut of the jacket is very modern. The fit is snug, almost like a second layer of skin. It doesn’t cinch around my neck, even when zipped up all the way. The length was almost ideal, not so long that it bunches in front of you when riding but cropped comfortably at the waistline. Thick rubber lettering across the chest broadcasts to everyone you’re sporting Icon gear. There’s a textile underlay beneath the letters that match the color of the jacket and make the lettering succinct, not billboard-like. Thick, thermoplastic Icon rubber badges also adorn both arms. Don’t know what thermoplastic is? Me neither, but they are hard enough to deflect a degree of road rash if you went skidding on your side across the pavement. This style of protection is also incorporated in an external back protective plate with an alloy insert. The back plate does not quite offer the same level of protection as full leathers, but the leather wasn’t meant for wearing on the track. It’s styled exclusively to look good on the street.

I’ve worn the jacket on numerous street rides in sun and rain and the stitching is as tight today as the day I bought it. The leather has conformed nicely to the shape of my upper body. It would have helped to have treated the leather before I wore it, but I like the way it looks now better than the sheen it had fresh out of the box. It has a removable insulated windproof liner that I took out since I’ve been wearing it during the summer. And since I have been wearing thick black leather on scorching summer days, I opened up the two small zippered shoulder vents to allow the jacket to breathe.

But even with the vents open, air circulation is minimal. I had to unzip it during the Victory Vision press intro because I got too hot. The heavy-duty leather is great for protection and will serve me well now that fall is upon us, but during the summer the black version that I had was a heat magnet. The vents allow a little air in but not enough to cool you down when the temperature gets above 90 degrees. Icon offers the jacket in white, which would have deflected some of the heat that my black one absorbed, but I like the fact that you can thrash black out more without it looking dingy.

When I say the jacket is heavy-duty, I mean it. The elbows are reinforced but still bendable. The upper arm and upper back are also reinforced with the rigid thermoplastic and alloy inserts. But including all this added protection comes with a price. The jacket is heavy. I didn’t throw it on a scale, but you could do some serious arm curls with it. The first time I took it with me on a press intro, the weight of the jacket, combined with my helmet, boots, gloves and riding pants, tipped the scales at the airport. I had to shell out a little extra dough because my bag was too heavy. I took pretty much the same combination of gear to an intro prior to that except that I had a lighter, nylon mesh jacket and my bag was under the alotted weight. Just wanted to forewarn you. Icon durability comes with a price, a few extra pounds on the scale.

The Sentence:

The Icon Accelerant Jacket has served me well. It lives up to Icon’s “From the Street, For the Street” motto. It provides riders ample protection in a stylish, attractive package. It’s tailored in a modern fashion, fits snug, and makes you fell like a ruff ryder when you’re wearing it. The thick leather will last you longer than it did the cow it came from. But it is heavy. Literally. In black, it’ll cook you like a crawfish at a Bayou Blast during the summer. But with the cool autumn wind creeping over the horizon, I look forward to its protective nature.

  • Product: Icon Accelerant Jacket
  • Color Options: Black, Blue, Red, White
  • MRSP: $380