For the longest time, I’ve looked the other way when someone said ‘budget gloves’. I don’t intend to sound like an utter snob, but my reasoning has always been the iffy quality and paltry protection levels that such gloves offered. This was until I came upon an advertisement for the Viaterra Grid full gauntlet gloves during a lazy Sunday stroll on Instagram. Knowing Viaterra and its reputation of building quality riding gear and accessories, I was intrigued and got myself a pair to test.
Right out of the box, I liked the feel of the goat skin leather, the red stitching on various panels and initial sense of the quality. It certainly felt of a higher grade than the gloves I’d previously seen at this price point.
The gloves feature a perforated leather construction, with the thickness varying between 1.2 to 1.5mm. There is an additional layer of leather over the base of the fingertips, to reduce the effects of wear and tear over a period of time. This doesn’t come at the expense of a muted feel and feedback through a motorcycle’s handlebar and levers.
What took me by surprise was the gloves’ stiffness during the first couple of days and I clearly remember experiencing pain in my forearms on Day One. That was because of the limited range of motion they allowed, say while twisting the throttle grip or pulling the brake/clutch lever. I’ve never experienced this with any other full gauntlet glove in the past and it is clear that these gloves require a fair amount of time to break in. Once that is done – mine took about four full days of riding – and the gloves take the shape of your hand, the fit feels snug and comfortable, secured by the single-sided velcro closure and wrist strap.
Coming to the protective elements, and that’s my favourite bit about these gloves. The Grid’s party piece are the Knox SPS 404 sliders, designed to protect the scaphoid area in case you crash and land palm first. They have been placed in a way so as to not come in the way of holding the handlebar. Then there’s the pinky and ring finger bridge
Knox palm sliders are placed ergonomically, pinky finger bridge.
that’s inspired by the ones you find on Alpinestars’ gloves, that cost more than twice as much. The rest of the vulnerable areas on the hand, like the knuckles and cuff are covered with a chunky patch of high density TPU. Overall, the amount of protection offered is better than some of the entry-level full gauntlet gloves offered by international brands.
As far as comfort goes, this is a summer-oriented glove, and that explains the air intakes on the fingers and the expansive perforated areas. These do a good job of circulating air, even on a hot day. Another nifty feature is the silicone patch between the forefinger and thumb that enhances grip over the handlebar. While it certainly works as intended, I’ve noticed that the material is wearing quickly under heavy handed and extensive usage. Thankfully, the patch is stitched over the leather and doesn’t result in a dangerous hole in the gloves after it has worn out.
On the whole, besides this little wear-and-tear niggle, I’m truly impressed with the Grid. It offers fantastic value as an everyday commuting glove that can also handle touring and the occasional track day. All of this for Rs 4,999 makes it a full gauntlet glove that can easily give more expensive gloves a run for their money.
Price: Rs 4,999