The Hoy Vulpine autumn and winter cycle clothing collection has been launched this week, with a range designed to help cyclists tackle everything from early autumn mild weather to freezing cold deep winter rides, and a big emphasis on visibility with lots of reflective panels throughout.
The company put the new collection to the test on one of the highest mountain roads in the French Alps, so we can presume it’ll be just fine for riding down the embankment and around Richmond Park. The approach for this range has been layering, to provide maximum flexibility to help cyclists deal with the constantly changing conditions that a typical British winter throws at us.
The range comprises the following clothing items split into three categories:
Late autumn/early winter
Seven highlights from the new Hoy Vulpine range
Let’s take a closer look at a few key pieces from the new range. The Portixol Waterproof jacket (£120) is made from a waterproof fabric with fully taped seams with lots of reflective details and ventilation, via angled dorsal vents, built into the outer.
Designed for providing maximum visibility, the Beacon Waterproof Jacket (£160) comes in this bright yellow colour with massive reflective panels on the shoulders and cuffs, and a larger reflective logo on the back. It’s constructed from a fully waterproof 3-layer ripstop fabric with the same dorsal vents at the Portixol jacket.
Looking like an ideal outfit for the current weather and clearly modelled on the popular Gabba, the Fortress Jersey and Arm Warms (£140) features a weather resistant fleece-lined softshell fabric that keeps the wind and rain out. There is a massively dropped tail plus huge reflective details.
Made from an Italian compressive fabric with an aero fit and mesh Coolmax side panels, the Senko (£110) is a long sleeve jersey ideal for transitioning from summer jerseys to winter wear.
Every cyclist needs a packable gilet in their winter clothing collection, and here’s the new Signal Packable Gilet (£110). It’s waterproof, windproof, breathable and has generous reflective details to help you stand out on the dark roads. Three rear pockets provide cargo space for all your essentials.
These are the new Thermal Bib Shorts (£120) which use a soft fleece-lined softshell fabric to protect against the wind and cold, with an Italian sourced Cytech padded insert. They aim to provide more insulation than regular bib shorts, and would go well with knee warmers for colder days.
It’ll soon be time to put the bib shorts away and keep those knees wrapped up. These Roubaix Bib Tights (£125) are made from a Roubaix thermal fabric with a Cytech padded insert. Particular attention has been paid to the ankle openings to avoid zips and foot loops and provide maximum comfort.
Commenting on the new range, Vulpine’s Nick Hussey said: “A lot of British riding involves dark skies and mixed conditions. So we've added a lot of reflectivity. But we researched perforated reflective fabric so that it still breathed. We created a seamless merino baselayer, with a high neck, for really cold, freezing rides. Thus we needed a waterproof jacket to protect it, the Signal Jacket. Neon, reflective, tough, warm, ventilated, to survive hours of riding in driving sleet. We couldn't find this kit, so we made it.
“A lot of Autumn weather riding is about adaptability. It may be a cold start, warming up, with rain showers, the wind, the lot. So we created further outfitting modules such as our gorgeous Fortress Jersey, which come with arm warmers as standard. This is also covered in reflectivity, in case the skies fall in. We thought about, discussed, tested and re-tested this to worrying levels of obsession.”
Sir Chris Hoy adds: “We all know that Autumn and Winter seasons in Britain can be challenging and unpredictable. Throughout my riding, I’ve always taken the approach of layering up in the colder months; having key items of kit that stay with me and are added to as the temperature drops. Me and Nick [Hussey] share the same principles in this respect, but we knew there were so many improvements that could be made in this area, so I’ve worked with Vulpine to design a brand new Modular range for Autumn/Winter that we’re both really proud of.”
See the full range at www.vulpine.cc/uk/hoy-vulpine
David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.