Tested: Alpinestars Motorcycle Gear

The Fastback shoe and Hellcat Tech denim pants will help keep your lower half from turning into mincemeat.

The thing about motorcycles is, they’re dangerous. You could be the best rider out there, but the rest of the population—and the terrible driving skills they (barely) possess—make life inherently scary. There’s no 3,000-pound metal cage surrounding your vitals. It’s just you, air, the pavement, and hopefully some pieces of clothing that will stop the bloody purée of tissue and bone from making themselves appear. It’s a lovely thing to think about!

Luckily, Alpinestars has been in the flesh saving business for the last 50 years, and in order to attract a discerning buying public, while keeping them safe, they’ve adopted street style with racing technology. We spent a week dippin’ and diving through New York City traffic with the hopes of testing the gear…but not really testing it.

FEATURES:
Fastback Shoe:
Waterproof, supportive, and actually comfortable, this shoe/boot allows for fast and responsive riding, yet the ability to walk around when you’re off the bike. Unlike snowboarding or skiing—where walking becomes a choir—the transition from bike to blacktop is barely perceptible.

Hellcat Tech Denim Pants: From a distance you wouldn’t be able to tell these are motorcycle pants thanks to a Levi’s look that seamlessly blends 12oz denim and DuPont KEVLAR technologies for impact and tear resistance. And with knee and hip inserts, you could take a lickin’ and keep on tickin’.

DESIGN:
Fastback Shoe:
No one is going to mistake your shoes for a pair of Aldens, but they’d be less inclined to stare at you like you’re wearing cardboard and rope. With a pair of jeans sitting below the Velcro strap, they resemble basketball shoes. And if you get the Fastbacks in yellow, you can add a little style.

Hellcat Tech Denim Pants: Being 5’8” with a 34-inch waist, the Hellcats were very baggy. Granted, I could stand to lose a few pounds, but who couldn’t? These would almost benefit from a tailor. Other than that, the look and feel is very similar to wearing a pair of heavy-duty jeans, with a greater sense of security.

HITS:
Fastback Shoe:
They fit like a sneaker, offer great ankle/foot support thanks to the Velcro and lace system, plus with a metal shank embedded in so if you do happen to take a spill it might save your foot.

Hellcat Tech Denim Pants: Length/inseam aside, these pants wouldn’t be too out of place walking around town or going out to dinner once you’re off the bike. Adjustable knee compartments make sure that you can adjust depending on your height.

MISSES:
Fastback Shoe:
The rubber membrane on the outsole of the shoe could also be incorporated on both sides, offering better protection from heat and abrasion.

Hellcat Tech Denim Pants: With the ribs and stitching in the knees, it’s the only spot where it’s noticeable that these aren’t regular pants. If you’re sensitive to abrasion, the knee inserts could cause discomfort on your skin.

SUMMARY:
Fastback Shoe:
A motorcycle shoe that could be used everyday with a variety of different looks.

Hellcat Tech Denim Pants: An alternative to the leather pants that rule the biker world in a style that’s easy to blend in with the masses.

PRICE:
Fastback Shoe: $200

Hellcat Tech Denim Pants: $250

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