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The Amaze Core sits comfortably in the middle of ION’s wetsuit range, and this year features a striking pink gradient graphic design option that ION have been promoting with their female riders through social media. Once we were over the initial amazement at the color scheme, it’s down to the nitty gritty of wetsuit performance.
For a more affordable mid-range suit there’s a lot of luxurious materials in the build, particularly notable being the Plasma Plush lining in the back area, which is extremely warm and quick drying and crosses over from their high end Select range. Also visible internally are circular black tape reinforcements at the more critical junctions of each seam, beefing up where three seams intersect. Around the ankles, wrist cuffs and neck seals ION have employed a rubber strip they’ve coined Seal Tight to prevent water ingress and help the area grip to your skin; we’ve seen this feature on their top-end suits, so it’s good to see it on their more competitively priced offering. These do a great job of snugging up these critical areas and prevent any flush on faster impacts. Externally all the seams are blind stitched, there’s no liquid seams which are notorious for cracking in UV, so the suit should have some longevity.
The entry and exit on the front zip suit has a decent aperture, making getting in and out a dignified process. There’s a drawstring to adjust the tension in the shoulder area once the suit is on, and some slick skin material internally to help keep water out. The zip is a YKK which links at the edge of the head flap and zips inwards to close. Inside the neck aperture is a handy key pocket with elastic. Internally, a minimal amount seam tape runs on the key wear areas, around the knees and crotch. The elbows feature an extra panel to aid articulation of your arm movement, which is an important consideration for wind sports.
Ankle drain holes are present, and extremely effective in practice, avoiding the dreaded elephant leg. Fit-wise, it’s the usual high quality and subsequently high stretch neoprene choices from ION, so even if your body shape sits in between sizes, there’s enough stretch and flex there for the suit to augment to you very comfortably. At no point did the suit feel claustrophobic or limit movement in any way. Two key factors help lower the environmental impact of the suit, one being a limestone-based neoprene, replacing some petrochemical elements in the production process, and the second being Aqua Alpha glue, which is water-based with no solvents.
This distinctive looking 3/2 is a good bet for those that need a full featured summer suit at a favorable price point. It offers excellent flexibility across watersports disciplines and excellent thermal performance as well as standing out from the crowd. We always feel flexibility is one of the key factors for a 3/2 suit, particularly if you live in a cold-water European environment and spend the majority of a year in a 5/4. When summer comes around and you crack the 3/2 out, you need to feel free and unincumbered, and the Amaze Core makes an excellent job of this without a massive financial outlay, and visually also lets you stand out from the crowd.