RENEN MTB KIT REVIEW
PREMIUM MOUNTAIN BIKE APPAREL
Words by Drew Rohde | Photos by Robert Johnston
The brainchild of Pete Fox, RENEN is the next evolution of high-quality performance wear. After spending years as President and CEO of Fox Racing, before a brief stint as President of Kanye West’s Yeezy fashion brand, Pete Fox has returned to his off-road roots with RENEN. After making some ripples in the moto world with their bold style and quality materials, RENEN is now making some limited mountain bike offerings with more products in the pipeline that should drop soon. We were lucky enough to spend some cooler Spring months testing the RENEN DH MTB Pants and Unite MTB Jersey. Over that time we’ve come away with a good understanding of the gear after putting in quite a few miles and days of riding, shuttling and pedaling, and we’re happy to share our thoughts with you.
RENEN’s vision is Premium Performance, and there is no mistaking that once you slip into their DH pants. I use the word slip intentionally as they have an almost silky feel that makes them a treat to put on. The reason is RENEN’s use of DRYCYCLE material. It’s a sweat-wicking liner that has a smooth, luxurious feel to it. Handcrafted in the USA, RENEN uses lightweight but not overly thin or cheap-feeling materials to build these pants.
The technical fabrics include full-stretch legs and hips to ensure pedaling comfort, even on long days. Stretch mesh is also used behind the knee and calf areas for comfort and fit, while another breathable mesh panel runs along the inner thighs and crosses over under the crotch for some nice air flow for the nether region.
Fit and adjustability should be great as RENEN offers even and odd sizes from 28 up to 38, with a Fly-Cam waist buckle to fine tune the fit depending on how many burritos you’ve eaten that week. There’s also a single stealth mesh zipper pocket on the left hip that fits modern smartphones just fine. The RENEN DH MTB pants retail for $178 and are currently offered in a choice of five colors to match your style.
The Unite Jersey is also handcrafted in the USA from premium technical fabrics and is incredibly comfortable, albeit not the lightest or most breathable. RENEN is working on some lighter summer weight kits, but this stuff is so comfortable that we’d bet many riders would be fine riding it as long as speeds are decent.
Like the DH MTB Pants, RENEN uses DRYCYCLE fabric in their Unite jersey to transfer moisture away from the body, and a Stretch Mesh back panel means the airflow out the back is top-notch. RENEN also uses “No Snag” stretch woven fabric with DWR treatment on the outer forearms, which is greatly appreciated by bushwhackers all over to keep the jersey (and your arms) in one piece.
The RENEN Unite MTB Jersey is available in sizes S-XL and a choice of five colors to match the DH Pants. The standard retail price is $84, but RENEN also offers a custom name and number printing service to personalize your Unite MTB Jersey for an extra $50.
Small reflective hits are a nice accent for pedaling to and from the trails. Renen also offers sublimation graphic options for those looking to customize their jersey even more. Take that factory feel to the next level in 3-weeks or less.
Over the last few months of use, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed every time I get to wear my RENEN kit. Not only is it unique and looks awesome, but it’s made in the USA and performs incredibly well. Admittedly, this is a DH kit and is not intended to be a lighter-weight trail pant with epic days in the saddle in mind. That said, I have done some multi-hour eMTB rides with plenty of pedaling and climbing involved, without significant discomfort. Of course, speeds were a bit higher on the eeb and temps this spring were a bit cool, making the DH kit a bit more tolerable. It also has us really excited to see what summer drops are coming soon, as a pant with lighter weight material and the same fit and features would be a pleasure.
When it comes to jerseys, there’s not really a ton that can be done to change the world, but there is no denying that RENEN have made a very high-quality piece. The Unite jersey is incredibly comfortable against the body, has a nice cut and fit for my 5’11 180lb frame and has held up to plenty of brush-encounters. I like the ventilated back and Brian Lopes, RENEN’s defacto marketing/team manager, insisted on hooking us up with their custom name and number upgrade to make me feel that little bit more factory every time I don the matching camo RENEN kit.
The pants are definitely a highlight item for me. The fit around the waist is a bit on the tight side, so if you’re in doubt, size up one inch, but beyond that I have no negatives to mention. For a downhill pant that’s designed to work with your body, offer some good coverage and abrasion protection while making you forget they are there, RENEN have succeeded. They are not the coolest pants, but aren’t overly warm for DH riding, and the DRYCYCLE material helps keep things comfortable and cool enough for most lift lines this summer too.
The Wolf’s Last Word
We are huge fans of Made in USA products, and when they’re not ridiculously more expensive than products made overseas and feel as great as this, it’s hard not to recommend RENEN’s gear to our dirt bike and mountain bike riding friends. We are fans and if this DH kit is an indication of what will be coming from their lighter-duty trail and summer line, we may have a new contender on the market.
DH MTB Pant – $178
Unite Jersey – $84 (standard) / $134 – $149 (custom)