Oakley has revealed the Kato sunglasses, featuring a mask-like design with a frameless lens that wraps around the rider’s nose.
We first spotted the Kato glasses on the face of Chris Froome at the 2020 Vuelta a España and Oakley has now confirmed details of the design.
The wraparound, one-piece Prizm lens has a built-in retention piece to grip the nose. The design, according to Oakley, allows the oversized lens to sit closer to the face, apparently improving the rider’s field of vision.
“The result is a product intended to fit close to the contours of the face, creating a mask-like feel,” according to Oakley’s press material. “When paired with Oakley’s unparalleled optics and clarity of vision, this product removes limitations and provides the wearer with the confidence to be at their best, unlocking their inner superpower.”
Priced at £231, the Katos also feature an adjustable rake mechanism that tilts the lens through a 30-degree angle to adapt to different face shapes.
Oakley supplies the Kato sunglasses with three nose pads, each with a different offset to fine-tune the fit. The nose pads are made from the so-called Unobtanium material (a grippy silicone) found on other Oakley cycling sunglasses and said to provide a no-slip grip.
The same material is used for the ear socks, which also have a pad designed to sit on the temple and, along with the nose pad, provide a secure fit.
It’s certainly an unconventional design and the unique look isn’t lost on Oakley.
“Our pursuit for the new and unimagined has taken on many forms throughout the brand’s history, and the latest is Oakley Kato – a redefinition of aesthetics to usher in a new age of optics for the sports industry,” says Caio Amato, Oakley’s global brand director.
“[This] represents more than just the release of a new product, it is a moment to remind ourselves that anything is possible, that superheroes are not just found in comic books, but in real life, and we can all aspire to be better than we ever imagined.”
The black frame is available with three different lenses: Prizm Black (11% light transmission), Prizm Sapphire (12% light transmission) and Prizm Road (20% light transmission).