I had the chance to test the brand new Terra suit from KTM this summer.
This new set of jacket and pants, built by Alpinestar and designed by Kiska, comes in dark blue with bright orange (in pure KTM style) details.
Clearly this gear is meant to please mostly the orange brigade, but it is undeniable that the quality of the materials and the construction could please most riders, even if they don’t ride a KTM.
Sizes are quite generous, typical of American brands, and only a few options are available. Sizes range from S to XXXL. I wear a size 52 in Dainese gear and I wore a size L in the Terra. The suit is quite baggy, definitely a product more accommodating for people with beer bellies and thick legs.
The best feature about this whole suit is its lightness and consequent breathability. The new showerproof construction material is really light (better than cordura) and water-resistant enough to keep moisture and light rain out.
Large size pants are baggy and super long, even for a six-three guy like myself. Finally, pants that actually fit right even when sitting down on my bike! Two big tilted vents on the thighs, with quick access YKK Quickburst zippers (pull and open) allow lots of airflow to come through. Long zippers along the calves make it easy to wrap the pants around even big offroad boots An elastic magnetic belt, hidden around the waist, helps the pants to fit, even if you don’t have a beer belly.
The pants have a slightly flamboyant orange leg, which helps keep the rider visible even during the day. The “Ready to Race” logo on top of it, built with reflective materials, gives an extra visibility boost in case you get beamed by a passing car at night.
The jacket actually fit me well. It has slightly longer sleeves compared to the average L size jumpers or 52 size jackets, but with adjustable straps, one above the elbow and one on the forearm, that prevent the sleeves from flapping and making noise at higher speeds.
There’s a long zipper with two drivers all along the inseam of the sleeves, which allow a lot of cooling air flow. The strap that locks the jacket, at wrist level, is made of rigid rubber, which attaches almost automatically to 2 straps (depending if the zipper is open or not) without any hassle. A very helpful feature and a more practical version of the regular fabric topped Velcros, which in most cases remain flapping or open.
The front of the jacket has two big frontal vents and one central rear vent, with two small ones along the shoulders. All these vents can be activated by pulling the little tabs that come out of the central part.
This kind of zipper, made by YKK, called Quickburst, is quite useful if you suddenly get hot while riding and want to let some air come in without stopping.
The front pockets are large and waterproof. One is zippable and bright orange, matching the leg and making the rider definitely stand out.
There is also a waterproof jacket, folded into a pocket, which can be zipped onto the jacket. To be honest this is probably the worst part of the overall product. The orange waterproof outer jacket is bulky when packed and super complicated to be folded away. Kiska replied to all the complains about this design detail with the logical “well, you can also carry the rain jacket in the big and wide back pocket,” which makes perfect sense but still doesn’t explain the reason for such a complicated design.
Overall, I think this suit is one of the most comfortable ones I’ve ever ridden with.
I am aware of the fact that the knees, shoulders, elbows protections are simply made of rubber and the back protector is actually a thin layer of cheap foam with holes that will NOT protect me in case of accident, but the good part is that the overall suit is very very light.
I would probably use this type of gear during three seasons, especially the warm ones. There are a lot of vents and air coming through the jacket so I believe the suit will not be suitable for riding in the cold, even with inner liners inserted. Saying this, the Terra is a product oriented for offroad riding, which definitely requires less protection against wind and cold than its road-oriented competitors.
To conclude, the Terra suit from KTM is probably one of the best suits I’ve ever tried. Perfect for summer rides and comfortable enough to be worn all day. Showerproof, abrasion resistant and definitely cool looking.
Price is around €450 for the jacket and €350 for the pants (around US $530 and $400) , which places the suit in the mid-price range for its category.