Swiss clothing brand Assos has unveiled a brand new men's winter collection, which revolves around its 'johDah' winter jacket.
This collection is currently made up of men's fit items only. In the past, we've seen women's items follow a year later - as per the S9 shorts.
The brand is calling its Equipe RS johDah winter jacket "the most technical, low-volume winter softshell we’ve created to date", and priced at £575, we'd certainly have pretty high expectations for it.
When we reviewed the 'Bonka' jacket in 2018, at £330, we thought it was a bit pricey - but acknowledged that every member of the Cycling Weekly test team can attest to the extreme longevity of Assos kit - with items lasting many years (up to a decade) and therefore earning their price tag with each season of wear.
However, this new jacket certainly takes the pricing stakes up a bit. We've yet to test one but have put in the request and will be expecting perfection to justify the swing tag.
What's so special about it? The jacket comes with a front panel made up of several thin layers. The first is a short, zippered mid layer, with a 3L Sphere wind and waterproof textile over the top - which features a light thermal interior. The aim is to keep riders warm without allowing them to overheat - effectively to provide the holy grail. There's 'Diffusior valves' at the shoulders which reportedly draw in and eject air between the layers.
At the upper back and forearms, there's more 3L Sphere material to protect from the wind and moisture, then at the lower back comes an 'Osmo Heavy' layer and 'Osmo Light' layer providing graded warmth. The upper arms feature a wrap-knot 3L 'Ziggy Zaggy' foam designed to block the wind.
The collection also includes the Equipe RS Clima Capsule (£210) packable jacket. This has evolved from a prototype provided to WorldTour riders, and aims to provide an extra layer of protection from the rain. We've handled one of these in the office and can confirm it's extremely soft and lightweight, coming with Silver Haze fabric on the upper to buffer out the wind. A unique silver membrane also offers reflectivity and thus extra visibility without looking too much like a beacon in daylight.
The RS winter bib tights S9 come in at £335. They build on the previous 'deep winter' tights, and come with the A-Lock engineering also seen on the S9 men's and women's shorts. This bracing system keeps the chamois in place when getting out the saddle, and the goldenGate technology - where the pad is not stitched at the sides to help it move with the rider - is also included.
This additional bracing system does add to the RRP - we tested the S7 winter tights (£235) and Mille GT tights (£165) and were impressed so fair to say we reckon you'd still get an excellent pair of winter warmers if you didn't go for the newest and greatest.
The finish it all off for the 2021 collection are two mid layers - a long (£145) and short (£130) sleeved option.
Michelle Arthurs-Brennan is Cycling Weekly's Tech Editor, and is responsible for managing the tech news and reviews both on the website and in Cycling Weekly magazine.
A traditional journalist by trade, Arthurs-Brennan began her career working for a local newspaper, before spending a few years at Evans Cycles, then combining writing and her love of bicycles first at Total Women's Cycling and then Cycling Weekly.
When not typing up reviews, news, and interviews Arthurs-Brennan is a road racer who also enjoys track riding and the occasional time trial, though dabbles in off-road riding too (either on a mountain bike, or a 'gravel bike'). She is passionate about supporting grassroots women's racing and founded the women's road race team 190rt.
She rides bikes of all kinds, but favourites include a custom carbon Werking road bike as well as the Specialized Tarmac SL6.
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