At a claimed 93g for a size medium, the 7Mesh Oro is possibly the lightest Gore-Tex cycling jacket ever made and it's now available to buy. So how did the manufacturer achieve this? By paring down features and fabric to the absolute bare minimum.
The Canadian brand chose Gore’s new Active Gore-Tex fabric, which uses a waterproof, breathable membrane on the outside, bonded to a protective inner liner. This new fabric has already been used for the Gore One jacket (>100g for a size medium), and the Castelli Idro jacket (123g for a large) – but it’s lighter than both.
It's also considerably lighter than jackets made from older three-ply Gore-Tex fabrics, which are made by sandwiching the waterproof, breathable membrane between a protective inner and water-repellant outer. These typically weigh upwards of 200g for a similar roadie-focused, pared-down garment, although they are more durable thanks to the outer fabric.
So how did 7mesh manage to beat even Gore on the scales? Well, the design team included jacket elements that serve multiple purposes where possible so, for example, the vents also double up as passthroughs for jersey pockets, and the stuff sack doubles as an essentials pocket when the jacket is being worn.
7mesh also managed to reduce the amount of fabric needed to make the jacket, with smaller seams, a reinforced raw edge hem, tight pattern tolerances and custom welded zippers all helping to shave off a few grams. It still gets elasticated cuffs and 360-degree reflective tape, for nighttime visibility.
The 7mesh Oro Jacket is available now in North America and Europe for a not-inconsiderable £249 / €329 / $299, which is a little more than the Gore One and Castelli Idro jackets. Whatever you do, don’t take it near gooseberry bushes.