To be seen on the road is critical for runners and cyclists. As such, Sugoi has been hard at work in recent years delivering the most visible outerwear we’ve ever seen. The Zap Collection has key pieces for runners and cyclists and I’ve had the Zap Run Jacket in for cold-weather running.

Sugoi Zap Jacket Features:

  • Breathable, water/wind-resistant fabric
  • Zap reflectivity glows when shined upon by artificial light
  • Full-featured jacket with pockets galore (hand, interior, media)
  • Colors: Black, Coal Blue, Grey (tested)
  • MSRP: $160
The Zap Run offers good warmth/protection.

The Zap Run offers good warmth/protection.

Zap Collection for Running Safety

The Zap Run Jacket is fairly straightforward with the exception of the Zap part. That Zap is the killer reflectivity offered by the full line of products within the Zap Collection. Because you can’t be too visible, the Zap Run Jacket offers amazing reflectivity that nearly glows when shined upon by a light source (like headlights).

While reflectivity is the key element of the Zap Run Jacket, it also features a bevy of features that runners, walkers and casual cyclists will all appreciate.

Let’s start with the cut and the fit of the jacket. The large sample tended to fit a little generous. For the most part, Sugoi maintains a very svelte cut, so my 5’11” 170 lb. frame usually fits a size large. In this jacket, I appreciated the extra length in the sleeves and at the hem, but the torso could have been streamlined just a tad. In the end, I had extra room for layering, so it was all good.

The fleece-lined collar is great on cold days.

The fleece-lined collar is great on cold days.

The shell material is pretty substantial for a non-laminated jacket and provided good warmth on cold runs. The thickness did prove to inhibit breathability and tended to get saturated after long exertions. Luckily, the big zipper pull is easily reached on-the-fly to dump heat in a jiffy (and yes, I’m a zipper pull fan and this one is good). Perhaps Sugoi could add some mesh material under the arms — that might do the trick. Wind and weather protection is excellent, but don’t expect top-tier waterproofing here — just good water resistance.

Typically, a running jacket is ultra-minimalist, but the Zap Run bucks that trend. It features Velcro closures at the sleeve cuffs, two hand pockets, two interior pockets, double drawstring toggles, a fleece-lined collar and a chest (media) pocket. Again, the intent of this jacket is to provide a full-featured, visible jacket and Sugoi nailed it there.

With all the pockets, each one is usable and functional, thus making this jacket kosher for non-running activities. I brought it along on a trip to the California coast and appreciated its extra warmth and wind protection on cool, coastal mornings. And, the reflective pattern gives this jacket a little extra appeal. My wife also thinks it looks cool, so there you go.

Zipping up the collar provides extra warmth as the collar itself is the perfect diameter and height. And, the fleece lining makes things extra comfortable when running in colder conditions.

The Good

  • Visibility is off-the-charts
  • Good wind protection
  • Reflective pattern adds interest and looks cool
  • Full-featured jacket for running enthusiasts who will use the jacket for more than just running

The Bad

  • Could be a bit overbuilt
  • Doesn’t breathe extremely well (especially back panel and sleeves)

The Bottom Line: Sugoi Zap Run

Kudos to Sugoi for being one of the first to introduce the “whole garment” visibility trend. The Zap Collection has set the standard for reflectivity and the Zap Run Jacket has a full list of features that may not always come in a running jacket.

Buy Now: Available at REI


About Author

A native of the Pacific Northwest, Jason quickly developed a love for the outdoors and a thing for mountains. That infatuation continues as he founded this site in 1999 -- sharing his love of road biking, mountain biking, trail running and skiing. That passion is channeled into every article or gear review he writes. Utah's Wasatch Mountains are his playground.

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