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The Spera Jacket from Italian brand Nalini is one designed for the cold weather, zero to six Celsius by their reckoning and it certainly is super toasty. A nice relaxed fit for a race jacket too.
Nalini have a range of in-house materials that use various top secret coatings to keep out the elements and they certainly do the job they are designed to do. Their Mantovent fabric is used for the majority of the jacket and its job is to block wind and cold air from entering while remaining breathable. A big ask in a fleece lined jacket like the Spera but nonetheless it works well.
At the recommended temperature range the Spera remains dry inside thanks to good wicking properties but keeps even the iciest of winds at bay. If you do push a little hard and start to overheat dropping the zip a bit soon restores the balance.
The cut is what Nalini call a regular fit which gives a bit of room around the body for warm air to accumulate or circulate keeping you a comfortable temperature even if you have to stop.
The water repellent treatment will keep you dry in sustained drizzle or a brief downpour but the Spera is by no means a waterproof. That does make it a viable alternative if there is a small possibility of a shower rather than having to wear a full rain jacket.
Nalini make their clothing range in Italy and quality is something they care about. The finish is top notch on all the stitching and edges. So it should be too for a £120 jacket but there is a good feeling of getting what you pay for here.
The only irritating thing is that the wind flap behind the zip always gets caught as you try to undo it making removal a two handed faff as you move the material out of the way.
That aside though you get a nice high neck which is soft against your skin while providing a snug fit. The proportions of the jacket are good too with plenty of length in the arms and the body. In fact it's quite generously sized for an Italian piece of clothing so need to go up a size.
For storage you get three rear pockets which are deep enough to keep hold of your kit even when crouched in the drops. You don't get a zipped valuables pocket though like we are starting to see on a lot of jerseys these days.
Overall the Nalini is a great cold weather jersey that thanks to its fit and material warrants the £120 asking price. The fabric is hardwearing and with the water repellent bonus makes it highly versatile for the showery days of winter.
Generously cut Italian winter jersey that's super toasty, annoying zip/fabric conflict though
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Make and model: Nalini Spera Jacket
Size tested: Large - Red
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
The Spera is a thermal jersey for use in near freezing conditions which it does very well. A relaxed cut that is comfortable with good build quality makes for a lovely bit of clothing.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
* Windproof outer material
* Water repellent coating
* S - 3XL
* Raglan Sleeves
* Full Zip
* 3 rear pockets
* Red/White, Black/White, White/Red and Black/Yellow colour options.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
A really comfortable jacket that is suited to cold temperatures.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Material getting stuck in the zip.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?
The Spera is an excellent choice for the cold, dry days of the winter and with the added bonus of the water repellent coating it doesn't ruin a ride if you get caught out in the rain. Well made with a relaxed cut means it's good value for money.
Age: 36 Height: 180cm Weight: 76kg
I usually ride: Kinesis T2 My best bike is: Kinesis Aithien
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed,
With 20 years of road cycling and over 150,000 miles in his legs it's safe to say Stu is happiest when on the bike whatever the weather. Since writing his first review for road.cc back in 2009 he has also had a career in engineering including 3D-CAD design and product development, so has a real passion for all of the latest technology coming through in the industry but is also a sucker for a classic steel frame, skinny tyres, rim brakes and a damn good paintjob.
His fascination with gravel bikes is getting out of control too!