Before disappearing in the mass extinction at the end of the Paleozoic era about 252 million years ago, trilobites were one of the most enduring early animals, thriving in the seas for more than 300 million years. Much credit for their survival goes to the arthropod’s tough exoskeleton, which resembles an articulated motorcycle back protector.
This flexible protective shell (and more than likely a few beers) was the inspiration for the name Trilobitex, a strong denim-like material at the heart of the Trilobite premium aramid apparel line. It includes jackets, shirts, gloves and men’s and women’s riding jeans, all designed in the Czech Republic and imported to the U.S. by Motonation.
Trilobite’s Rally jacket jumped off the catalog page at me thanks to its traditional but stylish waxed cotton and denim look. A technical touring jacket, the Rally’s outer materials include Trilobitex in the impact and abrasion areas, which is a laminate of Dyneema denim (said to have extremely high tensile strength), a Kevlar layer for abrasion and tearing resistance and a Tri-Tex waterproof membrane.
All told Trilobitex is far stronger and more abrasion resistant than Cordura nylon but looks like denim. The rest of the jacket features waxed cotton laminated with Kevlar and a Tri-Tex membrane for good looks, durability and waterproofness, and YKK zippers are used throughout.
Backing up the Rally’s rugged shell is CE Level 2 armor in the shoulders and elbows, and there’s a pocket for an optional $79 CE Level 2 back protector. For additional warmth and water resistance, the jacket includes a zip-out Thermolite vest and zip-out Tri-Tex waterproof jacket liner that can be worn separately. With the liners out the Rally jacket is a nice weight for warm-weather riding, and large zippered vents on the chest, back and sleeves flow lots of air.
Comfort and fit are enhanced with soft-touch material on the cuffs and collar, which has a strap retainer, and adjustable waist belts and sleeve straps. Cargo capacity is immense, too, with a total of nine pockets, including a large zippered hunter’s pocket on the lower back, and interior wallet and media pockets. For conspicuity there’s a reflective Trilobite logo emblazoned across the back.
With the Tri-Tex liner zipped in the Rally jacket is thoroughly waterproof, and it takes a real gully washer to make it leak even with the liner out. I find it the perfect weight for three-season riding with mild summers, and I really like the look and fit. The Trilobite Rally jacket comes in Dark Blue/Black in men’s sizes S-2XL and goes for $319 with a one-year warranty.
For more information, call (619) 401-4100 or visit motonation.com.