A top-quality reversible shell, the Gore Cosmo Two Way – but it’ll cost you.
As usual with Gore-Tex, the waterproofing is excellent. You could spend hours riding in a monsoon and no rain would get through the single-thickness fabric. All the seams are expertly taped internally – or externally, depending on which way round you wear the jacket – and they’re not going to start lifting and leaking after a few washes. So, for keeping the rain out, you really can’t do much better than this. The fabric is very resistant to scuffs too – treat it well and it should last ages.
There are a number of things that mark the Cosmo out as different though, for a start it's reversible - two jackets for the price of one… okay one and a half maybe; yes this is an expensive jcycling jacket and more than likely the most expensive commuting jacket on the market. The other thing that sets it apart from the crowd is that it is available exclusively at Evans with whom Gore collaborated on the design, no other bike shop, chain or online emporia will stock it.
The cut is more relaxed than most of Gore’s bike jackets, which makes a lot of sense for commuting. You can fit it over your everyday clothes without any trouble and the shape doesn’t look too strange for walking around town. You still get plenty of bikey features, though, like the high, close-fitting collar, long arms with Velcro- adjustable cuffs, and an extended tail that comes with a one-hand operated drawcord so you can fine-tune the fit from the saddle
You don’t get any extra vents here, although you can use the adjustable openings to provide a decent amount of air conditioning and the fabric itself is impressively breathable. Clearly, you can’t have an internal liner to help with breathability on a reversible jacket, but chances are that you’re not going to be working up too much of a sweat on an average urban commute anyway – certainly not as much as if you were out on a sports ride.
Stretchy panels around the back of the shoulders provide a bit of extra give for reaching forward to the handlebars in comfort, and whichever way around you wear it, you get zipped pockets on the chest and in the lower back. The front zip is pretty much waterproof and the hood, which you can fold away in the collar, is close-fitting so it doesn’t flap about and drive you nuts whenever you get a bit of speed up.
That high-vis yellow really zings out to get you seen in dull light conditions and you get plenty of reflective trim to shine in headlights at night. We’ve got to say, though that as a reversible jacket it has one eensy weensy drawback, worn with the grey side showing, it simply looks like an inside out jacket to us.
Does a brilliant job as a waterproof, high viz commuting shell, not so convinced by the reversibility… and more than a tad pricey
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Make and model: Gore Bike Wear Cosmo reversible jacket
Size tested: L
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes, it's a really good jacket for its intended purpose
Would you consider buying the product? Need a pay rise first
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes, if they had the money
Age: 36 Height: 184cm Weight: 74kg
I usually ride: My best bike is:
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, sportives, general fitness riding, mtb,
Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been road.cc technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now pushing 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.