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My first thought when I see the mark of Swiss cycling brand Assos is of watching XC legends, Jolanda Neeff and Nino Schurter, ride off the front throughout multiple seasons of World Cups, wearing their gear. Those two are legit phenoms of XC racing and make exemplary brand ambassadors.

I had some Assos lycra back when I was pretending to race XC, and I was always impressed with the quality and durability of their super lightweight gear. When I learned they were sewing up a Trail Collection kit I was stoked to check it out.

Short sleeve trail jersey

The new Trail jersey is the lightest and most breathable “baggy” jersey I have worn. The material makeup of the shirt is 82% polyester, 13% polyamide, and 5% elastane. Large front and rear panels feel similar to the stretchy fabric of summer-weight lycra, and the underarm mesh is porous enough to see through.

This is a fantastic warm weather riding kit, clearly designed to keep riders cool while working hard. I rode in the Trail jersey a number of times on 60-68°F days (15-18°C) and the material did a solid job of wicking sweat and drying quickly. As the season grows warmer this kit will move to the top of my gear pile. On rides below 60°F, I would opt for a heavier layer. This shirt is made for sunshine.

The overall fit of the Trail jersey is decidedly slim, though not so tight that it could be mistaken for a “roadie” shirt. It doesn’t flap around much, and there is little material to catch on branches. However, there is a noticeable space between the rider and the jersey.

Assos Trail jerseys are available in three colors, and a wide variety of sizes. Make sure to check the Assos sizing chart, as their fit parameters are unique.

Yup, that is my hand you can see through the underarm mesh. Assos is not messing around with ventilation.

Cargo shorts

Like the jersey above, Assos has prioritized weight, simplicity, and breathability with their new Cargo bike shorts. The shorts are made of 80% polyamide and 20% elastane, resulting in a softshell material with high elasticity.

These Cargo shorts will shine as the temperature rises as well, with leg holes wide enough to let in a fair bit of airflow, while covering the top of your kneepads at the same time.

I was skeptical of the stretch waistline at first but after a few rides, I am digging it. There is no zipper or adjustment to deal with. You simply pull the shorts on and the silicone band around the inner waist keeps them in place. The two hip pockets provide space for your GPS device or snacks if you are riding sans-bag.

The shorts are rather tight around the upper hips but are as open as any other baggy shorts toward the bottom.

The elastic waistband is lined with silicone, keeping the Cargo shorts in place.

Liner shorts

assos internal
Assos hip pad

If you have ever ridden in Assos kit, you know about the feather-couch chamois they sew into their liners. The overall thickness and comfort of the chamois is all-day-adventure inspiring. I did one ride in these that included over six hours of pedaling, and the thought of a saddle sore never crossed my mind.

This liner has removable hip bumpers on either side for those inevitably intimate moments with the ground. Silicone bands on the legs and waistband ensure that the only thing you will notice about these shorts is how plush the chamois feels. They fit like fancy boxer-briefs.

Bottom line

This kit falls solidly into the sunny shred pile. As the days grow longer and you start to sweat from exertion rather than from the amount of clothing you have on, give the new Assos Trail kit a look.

Pricing and availability

  • Short Sleeve Trail Jersey: $119
  • Trail Cargo Shorts: $149
  • Trail Liner Shorts: $139

The new kit will be available starting March 7th.

Thanks to Assos for providing the Trail kit for review. 

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