In early summer of 2014, while testing motorcycle suits for an Overland Journal review, I put the REV’IT! Sand II jacket and pant combo to the ultimate test. With temperatures pushing well into triple digits, I rode into the sun-scorched deserts of Baja. Although no motorcycle suit is comfortable in those conditions, the Sand II proved up to the task and kept me protected and cool. It instantly won me over and has been a trusted layer over the course of thousands of miles of travel.
Now in its third evolution as the Sand III, the Sand line has been expanded to include another offering dubbed the Urban. With the same features as the jacket I’ve come to love, the new addition is primarily a stylistic departure from its predecessors with a classic look harkening to the halcyon days of early motorcycle touring. Made of poly/cotton and treated with an optional waxed coating, the Sand Urban has a timeless aesthetic that looks just as appropriate on a modern adventure bike as it does a vintage steed.
In keeping with the successful formula of the first Sand jackets, the Urban features durable polyester oxford fabric at the high abrasion and impact areas on the shoulders and elbows; both sections are also protected with thin SEESMART padding. An additional internal pocket accepts a REV’IT! back protector, and the jacket can also be fitted with the optional Challenger Cooling Vest or hi-viz vest for better visibility. Both attach firmly to internal and external fixed points for optimal integration.
One of the things I immediately liked about the Sand II and subsequently the Urban, is the thoughtful placement of ventilation features. The two chest vents are large enough to import a high volume of air even if the back vent is a bit on the small side. It’s the full-length zippers on the forward aspect of the arms I love most. They not only keep my forearms and biceps cool, those vents further force air into the torso.
REV’IT! did well to not deviate from the Sand’s touring prowess and the Urban retains a rear waterproof cargo pocket as well as two oversized and weatherproof pockets at the hips. Those pockets are backed with hand warmer openings and lined with a soft-touch fabric. The collar is also wrapped in soft polyester to reduce chafing, and the neck tab can be secured in the open position to eliminate flapping while at speed.
The articulated elbows and multiple adjustments at the arms and torso, combined with REV’IT!’s superb tailoring make the Urban comfortable for long miles in the saddle. Like the other jackets in the line, weatherproofing is bolstered with an insulated liner and a Hydratex waterproof/breathable layer. After the first few outings I treated my Urban with Nikwax Cotton Proof to give the outer layer an extra boost of water repellency.
There are a couple minor attributes I’ve also come to appreciate over the course of several years in other Sand jackets. The zippers are generously sized and resist dirt intrusion for a smooth operation, and I like how the cuffs can be zipped open to help pull inner layers into position while sliding my arms through the sleeves. The inside chest pocket is deep enough for a large phone, and the snaps on the pockets are easy to operate with gloved hands. REV’IT! demonstrated good design restraint and only added the features necessary, and nothing more. As I knew it would be, it’s also extremely comfortable with no break-in required. The outer fabric is pliable and soft right out of the box. If I had one minor grouse, it is with the somewhat narrow shaping of the sleeves. With the liners in place it’s a tight squeeze and I have fairly lean arms. The fit is overall a touch on the snug side.
If you like the idea of a modern touring jacket, but want something with classic appeal, look no further than the Sand Urban. As sharp as it is in all black, the dark green is a stunner.