The ultimate glove shootout
Every rider should have a good pair of mountain bike gloves. Something not too chunky but not too skimpy. Here are the pairs of gloves worth considering.
Read our group test of the latest and greatest mountain bike gloves. There’s something for all budgets and tastes here.
Every mountain biker should have a good pair of gloves. Something not too chunky but not too skimpy. Full length fingers are a must regardless of the time of year. Save your mitts for the road.
Here’s a range of pairs of gloves that are all worth considering…
Leatt DBX 4.0 Lite mountain bike gloves
Ignore the back of this glove; we won’t even go there. Simply try on the DBX 4.0 Lite and you’ll be wearing one of the best gloves ever made. The NanoGrip palm is super thin and tracks the contours of your hand so closely that it almost feels like you don’t have a glove on. Even the Stretch-fit comfort cuff is the perfect tightness. There’s a sweat panel on the thumb, but we’d be careful with that as those Armourgel pads could have your eye out. Expensive and over the top but the fit is superb — making the DBX 4.0 Lite this group test winner.
Dainese Driftec mountain bike gloves
The Driftec is a Lycra-backed glove with a wafer-thin palm. The material is shaped so that it follows the contours of the hand without bunching. The neoprene cuff is soft and comfortable in the riding position and it’s a good length, so doesn’t leave any part of your hand exposed. The Driftec is also easy to pull on and fits well with bags of feel. A broad range of sizes ensures the perfect fit.
7iDP Transition mountain bike gloves
A minimal glove that will suit those who don’t like a huge amount of padding. Perforated palms are pre curved to improve fit and rubberised logos on thumb and forefinger provide grip. Ventilation is good and the colours are bold – though we did find the gloves stained our hands on the first few outings.
Troy Lee Designs Sprint mountain bike gloves
The Sprint is one of Troy Lee’s lighter weight and minimalist offerings. It takes its inspiration from the Troy Lee Designs Air glove but with thinner materials used in all parts of the glove. There’s still a decent sized nose wipe on there though. The phone- and brake lever-friendly rubberised fingertips are better executed than previous Sprint gloves. As usual with Try Lee, the aesthetics are excellent.
Sealskinz Dragon Eye MTB Ultralite mountain bike gloves
A super light trail glove that’s almost as good as not wearing any when it comes to comfort and bar feel – with a little bit of protection and a durable palm. A mesh back adds to breathability and these are touchscreen compatible.
Best mountain bike gloves: the verdict
Best mountain bike gloves: Leatt DBX 4.0 Lite.
Runner up: Dainese Driftec.
All the gloves featured in this guide score at least 9/10. You can see all our glove reviews here.
There is one clear winner in this test – the Leatt DBX 4.0 Lite. The features and the aesthetic may be a bit OTT for some but there’s simply no arguing with the fit and performance. It is an expensive glove though.
The runner-up in this test is the Dainese Driftec. A bit more affordable than the Leatt but still offering very good levels of fit and feel.