Dainese Carbon 4 Short Gloves Review: New Gold Standard or Letdown?

The Dianese Carbon 4 motorcycle gloves aim to achieve the impossible – optimizing protection, comfort, and feel in one sleek package.

But did Dianese nail the execution of their ambitious vision? And, are these the best motorcycle gloves with armor for you? Let’s find out!

After extensive testing, did we find any shortcomings to tarnish the new reigning champion of the brand’s glove lineup?

Dainese Carbon 4 Short Gloves

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Key Takeaways

  • Knuckle protection limits flexibility
  • The break-in period eases stiffness
  • Redesigned palm enhances tactile feel

Revamped Finger Box and Palm Design Enhances Tactile Feel

The most noticeable update is the slimmed-down fingers and redesigned contoured knuckles. The fingers on the old Carbon 3 model had too much room and felt bulky. The new Carbon 4 fits my hands much better with a snugger, performance-oriented fit.

However, the downside is that the gloves (1) feel stiffer right out of the box compared to the well-broken-in Carbon 3.

The contour of the knuckle section, in particular, makes it feel like you’re fighting the gloves a bit when operating the clutch and brake levers.

I’m hopeful the goat skin leather will soften up over time. But immediately after putting them on, the difference in flexibility and comfort was apparent versus the previous version.

Key Component Upgrades Over Prior Model:

  • Slimmer fingers improve feel and control
  • Contoured knuckles add protection
  • Stiffer at first but should break in
  • Redesigned palm enhances grip

The palm features smoothed-out seam lines around the edge for reduced bulk, along with an improved tactile feel from the premium goat skin leather. This thinner and suppler leather in the palm is vital for maintaining sensitivity on the controls.

Accordion leather on the backs of the fingers and panels on the back of the hand allows the Carbon 4 gloves to flex and move naturally with your hands as you ride.

New Color Options Available in Long or Short Cuff

The Dianese Carbon 4 motorcycle gloves come in a variety of colors to match your bike and riding gear:

  • Full gauntlet version with long cuff
  • Short cuffed version opts for suede palm
  • Touchscreen-compatible fingertip on short cuff
VersionCuff LengthPalm MaterialTouchscreen
LongGauntletGoat skin leatherNo
ShortShort cuffSuedeYes

While the long cuff is ideal for wearing over a leather jacket, the short cuff gloves feature a suede palm instead of leather, with touchscreen capability on the index finger. This enhances convenience for easy mobile device access on the go.

Choosing between the two comes down to personal preference on priorities – ultimate protection or more off-bike utility from the shorter street-oriented version.

Dianese Builds on Success of Popular Carbon Line

Dianese positions the Carbon 4 model with race-inspired styling between premium options like the Druids for track use or more affordable alternatives such as the Impeto gloves. They hit the sweet spot for aggressive street riding and moderate track days.

These gloves epitomize the Carbon lineage with an ideal balance of flexibility from textile accents paired with abrasion protection in key impact zones.

The long Dianese Carbon 4 gauntlets stand out with top-tier quality leather construction across nearly the entire glove.

These gloves go beyond typical street models by integrating extra armor for the side of the hand and pinky.

Yet does the newer generation earn top marks overall? Let’s break down other components of the Carbon 4 further.

Key Stats on Carbon 4 Gloves:

  • Materials: Leather, textile, TPU protectors
  • Construction: Goat skin palm, accordions, elastic, DCP2 fiber knuckle protection
  • Fit: Slimmer fingers, redesigned palm and knuckles
  • Protection: Hard TPU slider. DCP2 armor, finger shields
  • Price: $180-$210

Armored Knuckles and Palm Slider Prep Riders for the Worst