The Endura GV500 Waterproof is a superb jacket, with brilliant breathability and great waterproofing. It’s light enough to pack down and the price is really competitive considering how much more performance you’re getting compared to the 2.5-layer jackets.
Endura GV500 Waterproof jacket is actually part of their gravel range and gets a three- layer construction using an in-house ExoShell 40 fabric. The headline here is an impressive 40,000g breathability rating – the highest on test. That’s backed up by a 20,000mm waterproof rating – sufficient for all but the heaviest sustained soakings.
Styling is conservative and some of the features are quite basic – there’s an elasticated drop hem, instead of a drawcord, and there are simple half-elasticated cuffs that extend on one side over the back of the hand. Yet, it’s easily one of the best mountain bike jackets we’ve ever tested.
Endura’s ExoShell 40 material is quite crinkly and rustles loudly on the outside, but inside it’s smooth and soft and feels great next to bare skin. The fit is slim, and there’s very little stretch to the fabric, but there’s no annoying tension anywhere when riding. Being so light means you barely notice wearing it, and while it doesn’t pack down as small as the Specialized SWAT or Rapha jacket, it’s hardly a burden to sling in a pack for changeable conditions.
The peaked hood is big enough to pull over a helmet and the collar is high enough to shelter behind. The only pocket is located on the chest – it’s big enough for a phone and doubles as a stuff sack.
Endura has worked hard on its green credentials in recent years. As such the GV500 boasts a PFC-free DWR coating, recyclable packaging, ethical sourcing and a repair service based in the UK. Using a biodegradable DWR does mean it breaks down sooner, however, so it’s likely you will have to reproof it (Endura sells its own for £9.99) more regularly than some other jackets.
We were hugely impressed with the performance of the Endura GV500 Waterproof jacket on the trail. The breathability lived up to its billing with barely any moisture build-up on the inside, even climbing for 10 minutes in a temperature of 12º C. We loved the fit – not too tight, not too flappy – and all the features worked well.
Despite the gravel tag, Endura has nailed the needs of the average mountain biker with the GV500 and the performance advantages from the quality three-layer construction and excellent fabric are well worth the premium over its rivals.