Whether it's a warming layer for pre- or post-riding or an additional insulation layer on big adventure gravel rides and bikepacking. If your looking for as much warmth as possible, adding an insulated down jacket to your gravel bike clothing wardrobe is the best option.
We have already tested Endura’s GV500 waterproof jacket, which is an excellent hardshell jacket to keep the rain out. Does Endura’s GV500 Insulated jacket do an equally impressive job of keeping the cold out?
Design and specifications
The Endura GV500 Insulated jacket uses PrimaLoft Gold insulation which is sandwiched between two layers of lightweight, recycled windproof shell panels. Endura has treated the outer layers with PFC-free, non-toxic DWR (Durable Water Repellent) finish.
There's a hood fitted for heads, rather than helmets, and the front zip is double-ended for adjustments from the top and bottom. The wrist hems and hood edging is elasticated for a closure fit, as is the bottom rear which also has a silicone strip to help stop it from riding up.
The jacket comes in two colors, black and olive green, and graphics are kept to a minimum. There is reflective detailing on the front of the shoulders, the back of the arms, and the tail for added visibility if you're caught riding at night.
The jacket packs down into the left-hand pocket and the pack size is around 25 x 15cm. It's not crammed tight in the pocket though, so with some extra stuffing it will go a lot smaller if you need to squeeze it into one of your best bikepacking bags.
The biggest issue with insulated jackets is that the materials don’t have any stretch which means the fit is very important. Endura has done a great job at shaping the jacket to avoid any binding or restriction to movement when gravel riding or bikepacking. You will notice a little tightening if your throwing shapes but it's not really what it's for as Endura has the Endura MT500 Freezing Point II jacket for heading out on chilly mountain bike rides.
I haven't just been riding around in the GV500 Insulated jacket but also enjoying its winter-warming properties around town and during a particularly chilly house move that involved a lot of carrying, scuffing, and snagging on things. Despite all of this, durability has been very impressive so far with no rips or tears to show.
Most impressive is the level of warmth on offer, popping the jacket on and I quickly noticed an increase in warmth. The close-fitting neck keeps things snug and the rear features a little stretch to minimize draughts. The windproofness combined with the lofting of the PrimaLoft Gold is an immediate barrier that effectively keeps two (temperature and wind) of the three wintery elements at bay.
The third element is of course water and it would be unfair to expect this jacket to keep proper rain out as it's not trying to compete against the best MTB jackets. It still did a decent job of holding out against a mizzly drizzly shower too, which meant I didn't need to immediately stop and dive for my waterproof as soon as the weather got a little soggy.
Temperature wise, the GV500 Insulated jacket keeps a lot of body heat inside which is great when it's cold. On warmer days or if you’re climbing, having the two-way zip to open the jacket and dump heat is a big win for regulation and comfort.
Performance is excellent and I have no complaints regarding durability so far either. I found the GV500 Insulated jacket very well fitting and comfortable enough to wear on and off the bike. It might not cram down the smallest, but it will still pack away easily enough and the big pocket means it can double as a pillow when bikepacking too.
As you would expect from Endura, the GV500 Insulated jacket is keenly priced as well. With many cycling-specific insulated jackets easily exceeding $250 / £200 price points, Endura easily undercuts them so you get more warmth for your money.
Tech specs: Endura GV500 Insulated jacket
- Price: $189.99 / £149.99 / €169.99
- Insulation: PrimaLoft Gold Active insulation
- Colors: Black, Olive Green
- Weight: 272g (medium)
- Sizes: XS to 3XL