Dainese has been highly protective of its D-air technology if the Alpinestars debacle from earlier this year is any indication. It might sound harsh, but who wouldn’t be so aggressive when you spent 26 years developing a system that’s become a standard in MotoGP? That being said, for us non-Marquezes and Rossies commonfolk, the D-air technology comes at a price. A Dainese jacket with airbag retails for between $1,199 and $4,499 for a full leather suit. The Vicenza firm decided to address that and has designed a product it hopes will help mainstream the technology thanks to the introduction of the D-air Smart Jacket.
The D-air Smart Jacket is meant to make the proprietary airbag system more versatile and available to a broader audience. In fact, this is the first time a D-air product doesn’t require to be plugged into the bike to function; no need to plug in to play. This means the vest can be fitted under, or even over, any pre-owned jacket and be used on any motorcycle. The rubber tag located on the chest of the vest vibrates to indicate that it’s operational or that it needs to be charged and color LEDs indicate its status. The rechargeable batteries have a 26-hour lifespan.
The vest is made of a flexible and breathable fabric which is meant to make it comfortable in any weather condition and easy to fold and store in a bag or sidecase. As for weight, the vest only adds a few pounds to your get up—a small compromise to make for the additional protection.
Of course, the star of the show is the Shield, the airbag found inside the vest. The shape of the airbag allows it to protect not only the back and the neck of the rider but also his chest. The Shield also features a “brain” that allows it to analyze riding data collected by seven sensors at a rate of 1,000 per minute. This rapid processing is what allows the airbag to react as soon as an impact or a fall are detected. Dainese proudly boasts the fastest inflating time of the industry at 45 milliseconds.
Unlike a car airbag that almost automatically writes a vehicle off, there is no need to buy a new D-air jacket (or vest) should you get into a minor scoff that triggered your airbag. In fact, the Shield system can simply be replaced at a Dainese dealer.
The vest will be available in six men and six women sizes at the retail price of $699,95—not exactly cheap, but slightly easier to stomach than the rest of the D-air collection.
Dainese’s new Smart Jacket is the first airbag vest featuring D-air® technology that can be worn either over or under any jacket or outfit, without requiring any connection to the bike. The D-air® protector is worn separately from clothing, can be used riding any bike and on any road, and is available for both men and women. The Smart Jacket is also foldable for easy storage in a backpack or top box.
Smart Jacket is the result of more than 20 years of Dainese research on the D-air® system, and in a single garment combines the ultimate in airbag technology for motorcycles, the same used by MotoGP™ professional riders, with the maximum versatility and ease of use.
The “brain” of Smart Jacket is the triggering algorithm: At a rate of 1,000 times per second, the electronic central unit analyzes data transmitted by 7 sensors and detects dangerous situations, activating the system only when necessary. Through two decades of development and extensive data collection, Dainese has refined its sophisticated D-air® algorithm to predict accidents, including stationary vehicle and stationary rider collisions.
The Shield is the heart of Smart Jacket protection, an airbag featuring Dainese’s patented technology that integrates proprietary internal microfilaments that guarantee inflation is even and controlled throughout the entire surface. When activated, The Shield envelops the body and delivers maximum protection to the rider. The Shield covers the chest and back, ensuring the same degree of protection as seven Level 1 back protectors, despite not having hardshell protective gear inside. The result is an extremely light and practical garment that riders can easily fold and place in a lateral bag, a top box or in a backpack when not in use.
Smart Jacket is also designed with incredible ventilation for further versatility and comfort. The external fabric of the jacket is ventilated but the most innovative ventilation is found inside, as the Shield folds over on itself. In normal riding conditions, this enables air to flow through the front. In case of activation, the Shield expands and covers the entire chest area, providing maximum protection. The Smart Jacket also features water-repellent fabric and the integrated D-air® technology is waterproof to protect riders regardless of weather conditions.
Smart Jacket inherits the best practical features from the third-generation D-air® Road range, including the ability to have the airbag replaced by an authorized dealer. The long battery life – with 25 hours of operation when fully charged - makes the Smart Jacket even more usable, and the garment recharges quickly.
Learn more about Smart Jacket at: https://www.dainese.com/us/en/smart-jacket.html#sj-form
Dainese Smart Jacket is available in six sizes, with versions for men and women. It will be in stores from July 2019 for $699.