As a cyclist for nearly 30 years, I’ve worn clothing from a lot of different manufacturers, and while there is certainly some fantastic kit out there at a fraction of the price, there is still nothing quite like ASSOS of Switzerland. They’ve been on the forefront of cycling apparel technology since riders started making the transition from wool shorts and jerseys to Lycra and other synthetics.
I have been a fan of ASSOS clothing for many, many years. In fact, I still have some of the original Campionissimo bibshorts that I purchased back in the mid-1990s, although I have to admit that as I have aged they no longer fit. I have worn a lot of different cycling clothing since I started cycling, and have found that nothing lives up to the quality that ASSOS is known for. As such, I came back to ASSOS a few years ago, and ASSOS has been essentially the exclusive brand of bibs and jerseys that I have worn since.
The T.Cento Bib Shorts (MSRP: $299.00) are positioned as ASSOS high-end “comfort” bibs, which means that they are a little heavier material than the Campionissimo bib shorts (and thus will last longer). Likewise, the SS.Cento Jersey (MSRP: $229.00) is also positioned in the comfort range; so it’s a little thicker than their race-oriented Campionissimo jerseys. Both items have a slightly more forgiving cut for the “more substantial” rider.
Cento is the the Italian word for “one hundred”, and these items are perfect for the long-distance rider.
For me, one of the best things about the bib shorts is the chamois; the S7 chamois has been a mainstay in the ASSOS line for a few years now, and features a 10mm thick dimpled and perforated memory foam pad, covered with and ultrasoft microfiber topsheet. The chamois also features what ASSOS calls their “goldenGate” technology, which means that the chamois is only sewn to the shorts along the front and rear, not along the sides. This allows the chamois to move more freely against the shorts fabric as you pedal rather than sliding against your skin, thus reducing chances of chafing. While I would still apply ASSOS chamois creme for any long rides, for short rides of roughly an hour, I’ve never experienced any issues riding without chamois creme.
Another feature is the ASSOS “kukuPenthouse” which is sort of a comfortable pouch in which cradles the male anatomy, while still providing modesty coverage. I won’t say it eliminates the need to adjust oneself, but does seem to drastically reduce the need to do so.
As long as they last under normal use, they are well worth every penny.