The headline news is that Assos has launched a new pinnacle to its short range with the £310 Campionissimo S7 short taking the top billing.
Eye-wateringly expensive, it adds a new top layer to the offerings that the ubercool Swiss brand has in its portfolio; and in terms of price alone, means that they hold the high ground compared to all their rivals.
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Assos sees itself as primarily being a bike clothing brand, despite regular forays into hardware, luggage and the like, and the shorts are the raison d’etre: the item they do best and the garment they want to be closest to perfection – so the launch of the Campionissimo is a big deal.
Based around an all-new pad, the turquoise S5 version was with us for seven years but has been superseded by the amethyst S7 chamois and the S7 technology will filter through out the chamois range. To help mark the changeover to the S7 pad, the range of men’s shorts will be renamed to mark the occasion.
At the entry point to Assos’s short range is the Neo Pro; next is the Equipe which is said to be a race-worthy offering; next up is a long-distance short called the Cento and roughly takes the ground left by the Mille. Then, of course, the Campionissimo sits atop the range offering a racer fit with all the bells and whistles.
If you’re thinking you need the most expensive shorts going then I’m afraid you’ll have a little wait, it’s probably worth placing an order with your bike shop now though, as the Campionissimo aren’t expected to be shipped until February or March of 2014. At the same time, the Cento and Neo Pro will be available, as if to mark its racing aspirations in the range, the Equipe will be the first home and it’ll be here in time to give yourself a Christmas present.