Chrome’s Storm Salute is a stylish jacket that won’t leave you lacking in sudden downpours, although it does come in as one of the pricier options. It's certainly stylish, but this comes at the expense of visibility. The subtle reflective detailing is, well, subtle.
Comfortable, tapered fit
Waterproof and breathable
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The Storm Salute Commute Jacket by US-based Chrome Industries is an all-purpose, waterproof coat made with city cyclists in mind.
The jacket comes in a black or olive green colourway and boasts a breathable design to ensure comfort on the daily commute.
At $190 / £189, the Storm Salute is priced at the steep end of the best commuter cycling jackets, but justifies the cost to an extent with its slick, tapered design.
Chrome Storm Salute Commute Jacket: construction
The jacket has a 10k waterproof rating, which refers to its ability to withstand 10,000mm of water per square inch. This is more than adequate for sporadic showers and light drizzle, and also means it can hold out well in heavier rain. Every seam is exceptionally well sealed, making the jacket all but 100% waterproof.
For any commuter who finds themselves short of pockets, the Storm Salute could be a game changer. There are two mesh hand pockets, a mobile phone-sized chest pocket and a spacious rear cargo compartment large enough for anything from your loose change to the weekly shop (okay, well maybe not quite, but it really is huge).
One of the jacket’s selling points is its breathability, which comes from a large mesh vent at the top of the back and its lightweight polyester material. A two-way zip also allows you to introduce some air flow in warmer weather without the jacket ballooning around your chest.
The fit is surprisingly trim, with tapering around the lower ribcage that gives the jacket a snug feel. The sleeves, too, are far from baggy and are fitted with elasticated cuffs, rather than Velcro. If you are between sizes and plan to wear a midlayer or jumper underneath, I’d suggest ordering the larger size.
To stop you becoming sodden with road spray, there’s a slightly dropped back, although it doesn’t make up for the lack of a rear mudguard.
Chrome Storm Salute Commute Jacket: the ride
I was very impressed with the Storm Salute’s water resistance. My trial period coincided with a horrendous patch of British weather, and the jacket stood its ground well.
Likewise, the technical material meant raindrops collected like beads on the surface and could be brushed off after use. Though this doesn’t leave the jacket completely dry, it means it can soon be stashed away in a rucksack without fear of it soaking the other contents.
I found the Storm Salute to be more breathable than other waterproof shell coats I’ve owned. I didn’t overheat quickly, even when wearing a jumper and a rucksack, and felt comfortable throughout my short journeys.
My main gripe with the jacket is its stealthy colour, which makes it difficult to spot in low light conditions. I wore it while riding through the streets of London, and though I don’t think I had more close calls with vehicles, I certainly felt less confident that drivers could see me. In winter, when both the morning and evening commutes are likely to be in darkness, this is a worrying thought.
The cuffs are reflective, as is a band across the back, but I’m not convinced they make up for the jacket’s dark tone.
Still, a benefit of the colour scheme is that it is very stylish and unlikely to clash with the rest of your outfit. I found myself wearing the jacket casually on afternoon pub trips and walks with my family. Not a single person questioned if I was wearing cycling-specific clothing, and one even went as far as to compliment my newfound fashion sense.
With regards to storage, I personally had little need for the rear cargo pocket, which I imagine would mainly be useful for bikepacking trips, rather than commuting.
Chrome Storm Salute Commute Jacket: value and conclusion
Overall this is a well-performing jacket. The material is soundly waterproof, making it a reliable option for the daily commute, as long as you don’t mind compromising visibility for style.
Although the Storm Salute is expensive with its price tag of $190.00 / £189.00, it's cheaper than other comparable jackets such as Castelli's Commuter Reflex ($239.99 / £280.00). Chrome's offering also comes with the added value of adapting to everyday settings, and can be worn outside of the 40 or so minutes you spend a day actually travelling to and from work. If you see it as your go-to waterproof, then the price becomes much more reasonable.
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