Sombrio's Mutant waterproof combines a casual look with some bike-friendly features. It's not one for cross-country racing whippets, but it could be a godsend for larger riders, fashion-conscious freeriders and short-distance commuters.
The Mutant is fully waterproof, with taped seams throughout. It's made of PU-coated Nylon with a fetching herringbone pattern.
Mesh-lined pit-zips allow heat out and fresh air in. They have a snakeskin-esque pattern and are sensibly positioned so they aren't obscured by the straps if you're wearing a rucksack.
The baggy, freeride-friendly cut means it fits well over armour but is a bit of a 'sail' in the wind, especially on slimmer riders – it's certainly not one for the Lycra brigade.
The cuffs are absolutely huge. Velcro closures mean they can be tightened, but unless you're wearing armour that extends right down to your wrists, this leaves a big fold of excess material.
Where this roomy cut does come into its own is on the hood. There's plenty of headroom for even the lankiest of riders, even when wearing a rucksack – a pleasant surprise, because this is one area where many hooded jackets fall short.
There are lined hand pockets on each side – great in the dry but not so good in the wet, when water slides down the waterproof sleeves straight into the pockets – and an iPod/key pocket on the left sleeve. There's even a hole for your headphone cable on the inside of the sleeve pocket and a tab by the collar so you can route it to your ears.
Shock cords allow you to tighten the waistband and peaked hood, and also a helmet-style 'cradle' inside the hood, to ensure it isn't blown off on windy days.
With the hood up you feel cocooned from the elements, but it's a shame there's nowhere to store it when conditions improve. With the hood down and the jacket fully zipped up, your head movement is restricted and your chin rubs against the collar. Easing the zip down a few inches improves the situation, but lets cold air in.
The casual, stylish look means this is a jacket you could wear on the ride to work and around town at lunchtime – as long as your commute isn't too long – over body armour on the downhills, in the pits at races, or even down the pub. We wouldn't recommend it for cross-country – try it and you'll soon understand why dragsters have parachutes for brakes.
The Sombrio Mutant is available in five sizes (XS-XL), but only in one colour – stone.