- MSRP $89.99
- Where to Buy: Revzilla.com
- Removable, attaches via 2 front zips and buttons
- Stretchy side panels
- HyperKewl Polymer Embedded super absorption fabric
- 4-way 3D stretch mesh
- PWR|stretch mesh
- Lining: PU coated ribstop
- Compatible with ladies REV'IT Jackets: Ventura, Levante and Galactic
- Sample provided by REV'IT for review
- Review Date: July 2013
Update 9/13/2013: Since publishing this review, I've now gone on 3 ultra hot, long weekend rides with my coolvest. I can honestly say I'll never ride without one again. This has really saved me in 90-100 degree NV heat. If you're going to wear perforated leather like I do in summer, you must get this coolvest (or any coolvest for that matter). It makes such a Huge difference in overall comfort.
The Challenger cool vest is a unique, integrated system that attaches to many of REV'IT's current line of jackets. Not all of them are compatible, and so far the only women's jackets that this system works with are listed above. There are more options in the men's line.
I think what makes the vest better than all the others is that it integrates into their existing lines. At the same time, I see this as a slight disadvantage as well.
If you already have one of the jackets that this is compatible with, then it's a no brainer. May as well get one that will fit perfectly into something you already have. No problem. But if you don't have one of the jackets listed, then you're out of luck.
I used mine on my last hot trip up north. I like to use large ziploc bags to pack when I'm on bike trips since it makes everything fit better so I had this one in a large freezer bag. I didn't have time to run it under the sink before we reached the hot temps so when we pulled over I simply poured one of my water bottles into the bag. It was just enough to soak the vest. Even though my water wasn't ice cold, it didn't matter.
The vest fully absorbed the liquid and made it cold enough that I could feel it against my body (even over my Klim shirt). I could've drenched it further but didn't have enough water to completely soak it. It still made a difference. I had 2-3 hours of riding to go and it did its job the entire time.
It only takes a couple minutes to zip in and button up. As a smaller, petite person, I like how the vest fits me. It doesn't take much of the material to keep you cool. It sits neatly up against the jacket without bunching and breathes as well. I didn't even know I was wearing it except for the fact that I wasn't overheating.
You might be wondering why the cooling panels aren't extended fully between the chest and back. I'm guessing it's because the breathability might be limited if it's fully covering those areas. I'm going on another long, hot weather weekend ride this month and will post an update when I get to use it some more.
One thing I think REV'IT should do is create connection zippers for older models so you don't have to buy a whole new jacket to use this system. It wouldn't have the extra buttons to hold it in place, but I think people would still benefit from using it anyway.
If you own any of the jackets compatible with this vest, I highly recommend getting one if you want that nice, neat integration. Otherwise, it's not a useful system to you and you'll want to check out the Cooling Vest Liquid.