Skip to main content

Assos DYORA RS Rain Vest review

Is this race-ready waterproof gilet a cut above the rest?

Assos Dyora RS Rain Vest
(Image: © Mildred Locke)

Our Verdict

Beautiful, super waterproof and easily packable, but the tight fit and restrictive size range makes it less than accessible for many.

For

  • Beautiful shimmery fabric with reflective details
  • Excellent waterproofing
  • Close fit for aero efficiency
  • Double zipper for thermoregulation
  • Super lightweight

Against

  • No access to pockets or built-in storage
  • Little stretch in the fabric itself
  • Not cut for curvy bodies

Included in the Assos Spring/Fall line we’ve been exploring lately is the Dyora RS Rain Vest, a beautifully shimmery violet gilet with a women’s specific race fit and reflective detailing for low-light visibility. 

The Swiss brand says it conceived the Rain Vest, alongside the rest of its Dyora collection, on the roads of the WorldTour, with a view to designing clothing suitable for the pros. Its aims for the Rain Vest was to develop one of the best gilets for cycling, that’s ultralight, stretchy, versatile, and waterproof.

It’s designed to be worn over the Assos Dyora RS Spring/Fall Cycling Jacket (as pictured in this review) with the Assos DYORA Fall/Spring RS 9 Bib Shorts forming the final piece of the puzzle. Similarly to these other two garments, the Dyora RS Rain Vest is designed to be worn on race day, or just generally on fast road rides, in changeable weather conditions over the shoulder months. So that’s exactly what I’ve been doing with it, and now you can read on to find out how well it performs against the best women's waterproof cycling jackets.

Design and aesthetics

Since the Dyora RS Rain Vest was designed with the pro peloton in mind, it’s no surprise that it comes in a race-ready fit that sits as close to the body as possible. Pre-formed panels are body-mapped to create a gilet that supports the body while in a forward-leaning riding position so that the shoulders and sleeve openings round forward slightly. 

It’s constructed from the brand’s proprietary Schloss Tex three-layer waterproof fabric, which is also found in its other waterproof wares, and which it claims to be its lightest three-layer waterproof softshell fabric to date. It has a beautiful shimmery violet aesthetic that catches the light from certain angles to a subtle but striking effect, while a strip of reflective perforated tape is bonded to the back panel, covering the full length of the spine, and providing some extra visibility in low light conditions. The fabric has a small amount of lateral stretch, which helps to get a comfortable fit despite the tight cut of the garment.

The design of the Rain Vest is simple but effective: all seams are fully taped for watertight protection, the rear panel is extended for splash guarding, and the collar is tall to keep the cold out.

At the front, there’s a full-length double-slider zipper, enabling you to unzip from the top and/or bottom while on the go, to regulate your body temperature. You’ll find no pockets, nor is there any kind of flap to access your rear jersey pockets, meaning the bottom zipper doubles up as your pocket access as well.

At the sleeve openings and the bottom edge of the vest, you’ll find an elasticated hem, providing a little extra comfort, and the bottom hem is internally lined with silicone dots to prevent it from riding up.

Performance

Putting on the Dyora RS Rain Vest for the first time, it’s very clear that it’s designed for racing, as it has a rigid, yet mostly-comfortable fit. The two-way lateral stretch of the Schloss Tex fabric means that the fabric moves with you (to a certain extent) and feels quite forgiving, however, the vertical rigidity of the material definitely locks you into place. Standing off the bike, the fit around my chest is tight and, while not necessarily uncomfortable, it's not exactly pleasant either. Standing up straight, my shoulders pull against the sleeve openings, causing them to gape at the front. My chest is pushed flat, and I find myself feeling grateful that the accompanying Spring/Fall Jacket is thin and stretchy enough to be layered underneath without causing uncomfortable bulk. 

As soon as I’m on the bike, this is all forgotten. Suddenly everything falls into place, my shoulders are pointing more forward and the vest envelops my upper back and chest in a way that feels supported, but free to move. What's more, the sleeve openings sit perfectly around the valves of the Spring/Fall Jacket (which facilitate airflow).

Out on rides, it’s clear to me that the Schloss Tex fabric does a good job of breathing, and even on warmer days (which we’re certainly getting more of now in the UK), I wasn’t left with that ‘boil in the bag’ feeling like I’ve experienced with some other, cheaper vests like the Alpkit Women's Arro Vest. The fabric moves with me as I shift around while pedalling, it’s breathable, and it doesn’t rustle either. 

Having taken this Rain Vest out in most weather conditions, including significant downpours, the Schloss Tex has proven itself to be superbly waterproof, with rainwater simply beading and running off its surface and my clothing feeling bone dry underneath. Naturally, my arms didn’t get quite the same treatment due to the sleeveless design of the vest, but Assos does also provide a long-sleeved Dyora RS Rain Jacket as well, which I’d recommend for staying completely dry.

Taking the vest out on long days and multi-day rides, I found it to be easy to pull on and take off (thanks to the oversized zip tabs), fold up and stuff away, though it would benefit from having a pocket or pouch to stuff into. On the subject of pockets, while I appreciate its intended use, I did find it very irritating to not have instant access to my jersey pockets while on the move and think it would benefit from a flap at least to allow you to pull out snacks as and when you need them. The other issue I found was that the tight fit of the vest also means that in order to comfortably zip it up, you’re actually restricted in how much you can carry in your back pockets as well. Too much bulk, and it won’t go on, and perhaps that’s not a problem for some riders on race day. Again, it’s important to consider its intended use, but as someone who dabbles in all sorts of riding, I take ‘versatile’ to mean just that, and I don’t think this vest is versatile enough for all-day riding when you need to access food on the go.

Some other gripes I have with this vest: Despite the majority of it fitting very closely, I found the collar to be loose and flimsy, as you can see in the photos. It sits unevenly, and even when fully zipped to the top, I have sometimes felt the unpleasant rush of cold air down my neck during a descent.

My final gripe is that the range of sizes on offer from Assos is meagre. The fabric isn’t very stretchy or forgiving of curvier figures, and while I can wear it comfortably, seeing as I wear the largest size available and am a UK 12/14, this makes it not accessible for larger-bodied cyclists. If you have a large bust, as I do, you will find it feels tight around the chest, and gapes at the sleeve openings when you’re off the bike, which isn’t very flattering.

Verdict

The Assos Dyora RS Rain Vest is ideal for fast road rides or races when the weather is changeable and you’re likely to encounter downpours. Its close-cut race fit leaves no superfluous material flapping in the wind, and the body-mapped panel design pre-shapes the vest to fit around the body while on the bike, helping to keep everything comfortable and efficient when it matters most. The waterproofing is superb, it doesn’t let any water in, even in significant downpours, while the shimmery violet fabric and reflective tape down the spine help to keep you visible when it’s dark. It breathes well during hard efforts, and the two-way zipper makes it easy to shed some heat from the body while on the move.

However, it’s not cut for curvy bodies and the size range on offer is very limited. The collar feels loose and flimsy and lets some cold air through. Meanwhile, there are no pockets or flaps providing access to jersey pockets, so the only way to reach your essentials while on the go will be to unzip from the bottom - a solution, but certainly not one that will appeal to all.

Tech Specs: Assos DYORA RS Rain Vest

  • Price: £200 / $280 / €243.60 / AU$379.95
  • Materials: 100% Polyester
  • Colours: Nova Violet
  • Sizes: XS-XL

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month*

Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

after your trial you will be billed £4.99 $7.99 €5.99 per month, cancel anytime. Or sign up for one year for just £49 $79 €59

Join now for unlimited access

Try your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Mildred joined as Reviews Writer for Cyclingnews and BikePerfect in December 2020. She loves all forms of cycling from long-distance audax to daily errand-running by bike, and does almost everything on two wheels, including moving house, and started out her cycling career working in a bike shop. For the past five years she's volunteered at The Bristol Bike Project as a mechanic and session coordinator, and now sits on its board of directors.

Since then she's gone on to write for a multitude of cycling publications, including Bikeradar, Cycling Plus, Singletrack, Red Bull, Cycling UK and Total Women's Cycling. She's dedicated to providing more coverage of women's specific cycling tech, elevating under-represented voices in the sport, and making cycling more accessible overall. 

Height: 156cm (5'2")

Weight: 75kg

Rides: Stayer Groadinger UG, Triban RC520 Women's Disc, Genesis Flyer, Marin Larkspur, Cotic BFe 26, Clandestine custom bike