Pearl Izumi's Vortex Jacket and Elevate Shorts with BOA - Pond Beaver 2020

Apr 7, 2020 at 14:50
by Daniel Sapp  

Vortex WXB Hooded Jacket

• Over-helmet hood
• PI Dry hydrophobic treatment
• 3-layer waterproof breathable membrane
• 10k/25k rating
• Fully-taped seams, asymmetric zipper
• Sizes S-XXL
• Turbulence/black and Pine/Grass colors
• MSRP: $300 USD
Pearl Izumi's new Vortex WxB jacket is designed to be versatile and durable while having a hood that fits over the helmet. The jacket is designed with a 3-layer waterproof membrane to provide breathability and stretch fabric to add to the comfort.

The shell is treated with a Pi Dry hydrophobic technology which is said to help shed water and mud without compromising the breathability of the fabric while retaining the stretch of the fabric. It's said to be able to withstand over a hundred washes without a degradation in performance.

There is a large pocket in the back of the jacket and a drop tail along with a tailored cut to fit well on the bike. The zipper on the front is asymmetric for added comfort and there are reflective elements added on the bike for extra safety.

The jacket is available in sizes Small to XXL and in two colors, black and green. It sells for $300 USD.

The jacket is an ideal cut for on the bike, more so than standing.
A large zippered pocket in the back provides storage that's easy to access on the bike.

An asymmetric zipper keeps comfort as a top priority.
The drop tail design should keep dirt and mud on the jacket and out of your pants or backside.

Elevate Short

• 4-way stretch Cordura fabric
• PI Dry hydrophobic treatment
• Includes Elite Escape Chamois
• BOA Closure at waistband
• Two zippered pockets
• Sizes 28", 30", 32", 34", 36", 38" - 14" inseam
• Phantom, Fog
• MSRP: $175 USD
Complementing Pearl's new Vortex WxB jacket, the Elevate short takes a classic offering out of Pearl Izumi's line and gives it a modern update. The baggy shorts are made out of a lightweight 4-way stretch Cordura fabric that is treated with the Pi Dry hydrophobic technology to shed water rather than becoming water-logged.

There are vents on the inner thigh to aid in cooling and a BOA closure on the back of the waistband to help cinch in the fit, rather than having to fiddle with velcro straps. There are two zippered pockets on the shorts for stashing valuables and Pearl includes its Elite Escape Chamois, which is sewn in but can easily be removed by snipping a couple of tethers.

The shorts are available in sizes 28-38" in 2" increments and offer a 14" inseam. They sell for $175 USD.

Zippered pockets on either side.
The BOA closure on the back of the pants is easy to use and very functional.

Laser cut vents on the pants keep legs cool.
The included liner is fancy and comfortable but if you don't want it, or want to swap things out, it's easily removed.


  • 87 0
 "There's a boa in my shorts."
  • 1 3
 I hate shorts with zip pockets, much easier to snag your boa... Bring back velcro!
  • 3 0
 Joking aside, nothing worse than spending £60 plus on a pair of shorts where the pocket zip keeps catching on the lining and then despite careful trailside coaxing over and over again, then rips or the zip stops working...
  • 8 6
 Dick Pound
  • 37 1
 People are really paying $300 for a jacket and $175 for shorts?
  • 13 0
 I have a fork cheaper than this jacket.
  • 5 2
 Might as well buy domestically made Kitsbow stuff for that kind of money
  • 1 0
 Crazy money retail. I wait until they have a clearance or search around for sales and pick their stuff up for much cheaper. PI stuff is really nice and durable, and lasts years.
  • 1 0
 @blast-off: out of stock...unless you are an XS
  • 38 4
 I don't know about the rest of the world out there but I'd prefer a simple BELT.
  • 17 0
 Amen. I wish more companies would make shorts with belt loops. Most of these built-in solutions don't work.
  • 18 0
 Belt loops plus a stretchy belt from Arcade for the win.
  • 5 0
 @whambat: exactly what I'm using and why I'll stick to my beloved, slightly too big, very old shorts until they'll fall apart. Haven't seen MTB-able shorts with belt loops in a while. (Or at least none that I would buy.)
  • 1 0
 @danimaniac: I mostly just wear stretchy hybrid swim/ hike shorts with belt loops over my bib shorts. They cost $15 at Costco.
  • 7 0
 shoe lace FTW
  • 4 0
 Yeah over engineered. I have some regular shorts with a simple built-in belt and it works well.
  • 2 0
 @danimaniac: endura humvee. Not only do they have belt loops, they come with a removable liner, zippered leg vents, 3 zippered pockets, 2 long back pockets, and they include a belt (unfortunately not stretchy but they are actually pretty good, they're a plastic clip like on a backpack, super unobtrusive) and all in all relatively cheap. The only real downside if you ask me is the lack of any waterproofing other than a dwr coating, and we know they don't last long for mtb)
  • 2 0
 The original Endura Humvee is still my favorite, full belt with elastic. I have newer shorts with built in velcro tighteners from Endura, Ion, Maloja and Norona, only the Norona gets as much use as my old Humvies, the others just release when the jersey or backpack rubs on them.
  • 1 0
 @danimaniac: nukeproof
  • 1 0
 Yeah, not sure why more and more shorts companies are ditching belt loops.
  • 1 0
 @CycleKrieg: there's a term for this in the computer-printer industry: obsolecence. The company plans to construct the product that it will be unusable after some time making the consumer buy a new one. Same goes for the shorts here...
  • 5 0
 I don't know if its better than a belt but to me a boa makes sense here a whole lot more than it does on shoes. i mean, who likes having the top part of their shoe properly tight with the bottom loose as hell
  • 2 0
 When the laces get dirty, sometimes my Boa shoes feel that way when I first put them on, but the tension distributes the moment I walk 2 feet. I try to spray them down after a muddy ride to I don't risk jamming the dial, which also keeps the laces running smooth.
  • 4 0
 Is it made in Sweden or Switzerland to explain the outrageous price ? Or is it business as usual, cost 5p to produce and they're chasing maximum profit ? Hang on... I already know !
  • 3 0
 The laser cutting process will cost 50p alone, plus $15-20 for the material, $2-3 for the water proofing treatment, $5 for seam sealing, $10 for water proof zippers and all the other components, not to mention all the $$$ sunk into development, patterning, testing, customer service and distribution.

So yeah. Each jacket probably costs around $60-$80 to make, x1.5-2 (Pearl needs to make a margin), x1.5 (because then the distributor needs to make a margin), and finally the retail will mark it up 80-100% (keystoned) to reach that final MSRP.

Or do you prefer all your products made of cheap material, with no warranty, and/or sold on Alibaba or Wish?
  • 5 0
 Would the boa back of the pants adjuster be painful on the car trip to your local park?
  • 8 0
 I got them and wondered the same thing, they don't bother me, they seam to go right in the corner. I did lay on a hardwood floor and felt them though. I was skeptical at first but it seems to stretch less so your pants don't fall down as the ride goes on and if you need to adjust them it's super easy with gloves on
  • 5 0
 I have these shorts and you only notice the adjuster when you use it. Fanny packs and backpacks all seem to work well with them. The pockets actually go backwards, which is nice because your phone is tucked behind your leg where you don’t notice it. I’ve actually panicked more than once thinking I’d dropped my phone.
  • 2 0
 Best shorts I've owned yet. No you don't feel the Boa with a hippack, I've worn both my Bontrager bottle pack and my Dakine bladder pack with no issues.
  • 2 0
 I hope these prices wer put up in CAD too...but boa shorts are
  • 4 1
 a hip pack pressing against that boa knob is going to feel wonderful...
  • 1 0
 This is exactly what I was thinking
  • 4 0
 Boa for everything!!
  • 2 0
 Everybody start listing things that don't have Boa on them, yet. Goggles?
  • 1 0
 @Ron-C: gloves
  • 2 0
 @Ron-C: oh shit, well there ya go then, socks ?!!
  • 1 0
  • 1 0
 It’s a Boa Jack! Oh yeah brother!
  • 3 1
 Imagine a big over the bars and landing right on that boa dial, could even break your back from the point loading !
  • 2 0
 These shorts looking strikingly similar to the much cheaper 100% Celium Shorts right down to the vents on the inner thighs.
  • 2 0
 Just think of all the practical jokes to pull
  • 1 0
 On pourrait se faire mal en chutant sur le système Boa... et ça a l’air gênant pour un hippack
  • 1 0
 Perfect jacket for those "non crash" rides when you just want to shred signal.
  • 1 0
 300 what ? And people complain about the price of a fork ,wheels,brakes ,etc.
  • 2 0
  • 1 0
 Perfect shorts to practice manualing and wheelies in.
  • 1 0
 Three. Hundred. Dollars.....
  • 1 0
 7Mesh/Kitsbow prices for Pearl Izumi gear? No thanks.
  • 1 0
 Fox kits are way less $ and the Defend line is legit. Just sayin'

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