Mavic’s waterproof softshell is a top-end, fully protective waterproof performer. While most softshell jackets are weather- rather than waterproof, the externally sealed-seam Hydro is as impermeable as its name suggests.
Despite that, it’s still impressively breathable: the close fit helps wicking and creates a quicker-drying feel than traditional hardshell waterproofs when you’re working hard. Combined with its light weight, this makes it ideal for early season training.
The multi-panel cut is definitely on the slim side but gives great mobility – particularly the pre-shaped arms and extended, curved cuffs, which give a fantastic draught-free fit when used with gloves.
The zipped forearm vents work better than you’d expect, and the diagonal zip also stops any choking sensation from the tall collar – although using it takes some practice.
The big rear zipped pocket with three internal sub-pockets is awkward to use on the bike, but there’s a chest pocket for a phone/iPod or the like.
The Hydro’s price is comparable with several premium competitors, although it’s high compared with our best-value choices. Be warned that the fit is not forgiving of larger torsos.