The world's most in-depth and scientific reviews of outdoor gear

Giro Jacket Review

Supportive flat shoe for mixed use mountain biking and street wear.
Giro Jacket stock photo
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Price:  $90 List | $89.95 at Competitive Cyclist
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Stylish and comfortable with good support
Cons:  Mediocre pedal grip, especially compared to other option
Manufacturer:   Giro
By Jason Cronk ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Jul 24, 2019
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50
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#9 of 11
  • Grip - 30% 4
  • Comfort and Arch Support - 25% 6
  • Rigidity and Power Transfer - 20% 5
  • Breathability - 10% 5
  • Durability - 10% 5
  • Weight - 5% 5

Our Verdict

The Giro Jacket is a shoe that is bridging the gap between skate shoes and mountain bike shoes. The Jacket shares a lot of similarities with the Five Ten Freerider, but has some unique features of its own, like an added heel pad for shock absorption for those times when you're forced to do a high-speed bail from your bike.

Jacket II available now

Giro released the updated version of the Jacket, the Jacket II. Read on for more info.

July 2019


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Giro Jacket stock photo
This Product
Giro Jacket
Awards  Editors' Choice Award  Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award 
Price $89.95 at Competitive Cyclist
Compare at 2 sellers
$104.98 at Amazon$114.97 at Competitive Cyclist
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$104.93 at REI
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$100 List
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Star Rating
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Pros Stylish and comfortable with good supportSupportive, ankle protection, great grip, good protection from elementsSuper comfortable, good pedal grip, solid durabilityUnbeatable grip with ability to escape pedals, lightweightGood grip, quality construction, low price
Cons Mediocre pedal grip, especially compared to other optionHotter than other shoes during warm weather, expensiveLess grip than Five Ten's solesQuestionable sole durabilityLess grip than others, less breathability
Bottom Line Supportive flat shoe for mixed use mountain biking and street wear.A solid choice for riders of all abilities from beginner to expert with a great sticky sole and thoughtful extra featuresSolid performance in an all mountain shoeA shoe that begs to be ridden long days and keep the technical terrain coming!A high quality all around shoe from an up and coming company
Rating Categories Giro Jacket ION Raid AMP II Shimano GR7 Five Ten Freerider Contact Ride Concepts Livewire
Grip (30%)
10
0
4
10
0
10
10
0
8
10
0
10
10
0
9
Comfort And Arch Support (25%)
10
0
6
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
8
Rigidity And Power Transfer (20%)
10
0
5
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
6
Breathability (10%)
10
0
5
10
0
6
10
0
7
10
0
6
10
0
6
Durability (10%)
10
0
5
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
6
10
0
8
Weight (5%)
10
0
5
10
0
5
10
0
5
10
0
6
10
0
6
Specs Giro Jacket ION Raid AMP II Shimano GR7 Five Ten Freerider... Ride Concepts...
Rubber Type Vibram MegaGrip Suptraction Soul FL Michelin Stealth Mi6 Kinetics DST6.0 High Grip
Rubber Pattern Skate Style Full Tread Full Tread Half Dot Full Dot
Weight in Oz 14 14 14 13.75 13.75
Narrow or Wide Fit? Narrow Narrow Narrow Wide Wide
Upper Materials Synthetic Leather Polyurethane/mesh Perforated synthetic with mesh Textile/synthetic leather Synthetic/mesh

Our Analysis and Test Results

Giro Jacket II


Giro's Jacket II shoe maintains a very similar silhouette and design to their original Jacket, but now utilizes a breathable, water-resistant microfiber upper instead of the synthetic leather from the older design. The shoe still boasts a Vibram sole, but got an update to Vibram Ecostep, which features recycled rubber. The II retails for $30 cheaper than the original, now only setting you back $90. Compare the Jacket II (left) to the Jacket we tested (right).

Giro Jacket stock photo

We are now linking to the $90 Jacket II, but bear in mind that the following text refers to our experience with the previous version.

Hands-On Review of the Jacket



Grip


Giro outfits the Jacket with a Vibram MegaGrip rubber outsole that stuck to our pedals just as we'd expected for a skate-style shoe. The rubber is a harder compound than Five Ten utilizes in their Stealth rubber and it showed while riding. Where Stealth rubber really lets pedal pins bite into it, the Vibram rubber didn't allow such a positive connection. Pedals with smaller diameter pins seemed to mesh with the soles better than larger pin sizes. For casual XC, park, dirt jump or moderate downhill, the Vibram MegaGrip is adequate, but for similar skate style, the Five Ten Freerider may be a better choice.

Soles provide good grip for lighter downhill use
Soles provide good grip for lighter downhill use

Comfort


This contender scored higher marks in this category at a 6 out of 10 over the other skate-inspired shoes in our test. Our feet felt like they sank into the shoes, wrapped with Giro's Internal Bootie Retention System. The support was excellent, most notably the arch support. The Five Ten Freerider didn't quite provide the same degree of comfort and arch support that we received from the Jacket. Cushioning was decent via the use of a shock-absorbing EVA midsole. When bailing from the bike, Giro also included a Poron XRD heel pad to help dissipate energy with impact.

Rigidity and Power Transfer


In this category, the Jacket holds its own against the other skate-style shoes, with a similar amount of rigidity as the Five Ten Freerider. While we wouldn't necessarily choose this shoe for long XC rides or trails with a ton of climbing, the Jacket provides a good power connection to your pedals when mixed use riding.

Enough rigidity and power transfer for XC riding
Enough rigidity and power transfer for XC riding

Weight


Of the three skate-inspired shoes we tested, this contender is the lightest, at 14 oz per shoe in a men's size 9, where the Five Ten Freerider weighs in at 14.75 oz.

Breathability


These were moderately breathable. For light XC, park riding, dirt jumping, and lift-served riding the breathability should be adequate.

Durability


The Jacket possess a full synthetic leather upper. For their intended use, the Jackets held up relatively well, especially the Vibram rubber soles.

Best Uses


This contender made by Giro is a shoe that is suited for park sessions, light downhill and enduro, some light XC riding, the skatepark, and even your favorite pub. While maybe not excelling in any one aspect, this shoe is a jacket of all trades.

Tread pattern and rubber compound combined allow for easier pedal release when a high speed bail is necessary
Tread pattern and rubber compound combined allow for easier pedal release when a high speed bail is necessary

Summary


A shoe that bridges the gap from the skatepark to downhill riding and everything in between. In functionality, the Jacket is similar to other skate-inspired shoes like the Five Ten Freerider. This contender also look good and are available in several color combinations for individual tastes, even a bright turquoise, and black combo. This pair of flat shoes just may be the Swiss Army knife of mountain bike shoes.


Jason Cronk