A quick Google came up with Cycle magazine, September 1988, having such an article "Abrasion Testing: Torn in the USA". I'm not sure if it is the same article, but it has the results I remember.
Race leathers last a long time,
Kevlar/Cordura last about 1/4 to 1/2 as long,
lightweight leather, common nylon, denim are not protective at all.
Good quality thick leather wins by a BIG margin.
I can't find the article online but here are otherpeoples quotes and paraphrases.
Because most injuries are caused from skidding along the ground, abrasion resistance is vital. One of the best sources on abrasion is the famed "Torn in the U.S.A." drag test conducted almost 20 years ago by now-defunct Cycle magazine. For that test, clothing samples were stitched to a 75-pound sandbag and thrown out of the back of a pickup truck to see how long they'd take to disintegrate. Competition-weight leather (1.5-1.7 mm thick) lasted longest -- about four times longer than Kevlar, five times longer than 440 denier Cordura nylon and 20 times longer than denim jeans, which take about half a second to give out in a 30 mph crash.
Regardless of a material's abrasion resistance, how well a garment holds up on impact depends on an array of variables that are rarely cited on a garment tag.
In the case of leather, there are wildly different grades and thicknesses -- from beefy competition weights to thinner, buttery soft "fashion" leathers that offer less than 5% the protection of their weightier counterparts. That issue is complicated by the caliber of the hide from which the leather is cut. A natural hide is more consistent in its thickness than a hide that has been corrected.
In the case of textiles, it isn't just the caliber of the material but its construction. Kevlar ranks second overall for its abrasion resistance, but it's more protective when it's knitted, rather than woven. Cordura nylon ranks third, but it needs to be at least 440 denier and should also be coated.
Abrasion test from Cycle Sept 1988
Reprint from a
Sept 88 "Cycle" magazine article "Abrasion Testing: Torn in the USA".
"For the Drag Test, samples were stitched to a bag that held a 75-pound
sandbag inside a milk crate, then dragged behind a pickup truck..."
New, 100% Cotton Denim Jeans ----------------------- 3' 10"
Senior Balistic Nylon ----------------------------------- 3' 10"
Leather, Lightweight, Nude Finish, 2.25 oz/sq. ft. --- 4' 3"
Leather, Fashion Weight, 1.75 oz/sq ft. ------------- 4' 4"
Two-year-old 100% Cotton Denim Jeans ------------ 4' 5"
Cordura Nylon Type 440 ----------------------------- 18' 3"
Kevlar 29 Aramid Fiber, Style 713 ------------------ 22' 1"
Leather, Competition Weight, 3 oz/sq. ft. -------- 86' 0"
"For the Taber Test, the specimen was mounted on a rotating platform and
scuffed by two rubber-emery grinding wheels." The numbers represent the
number of revolutions until the fabric totally fails. A vacuum clears
Two-year-old 100% Cotton Denim Jeans 168
New 100% Cotton Denim Jeans 225
Kevlar 29 Aramid Fiber, Style 713 506
Cordura Nylon, Type 440 559
Leather, Lightweight, Nude Finish, 2.25 oz./sq. ft. 564
Leather, Fashion Weight, 1.75 oz./sq. ft. 750
Senior Ballistic Nylon 817
Leather, Competition Weight, 3 oz./sq. ft. 2600
More to consider...
"Finally, protection from road abrasion cannot be guaranteed by a
materials abrasion resistance alone. A jacket may have panels of
highly abrasion-resistant materials, yet if low-quality stitching joins
those panels and the seams come apart upon impact or during a slide, then
the abrasion resistance of the panels could count for nothing.
Furthermore, an ill-fitting garment may ride up in a slide, contorting
the body and exposing the skin. And the best jacket in the world, left
unzipped and/or unsnapped, won't give riders the protection they pay
for. When it comes to safety, the issues are more complex than just the
abrasion resistance of materials."