Extremely expensive, but they're pricey for a reason: they're top of the range standard. This is a winter bib tight that will undoubtedly become the rider’s go-to compared to all others in their wardrobe. If you can afford to spend just under £400/$550 on a pair of winter tights, then stop reading this article and grab yourself a pair right now.
Good stretch and breathability
Thick chamois that absorbs shock
Terrific geoprene layer at the ankles
crash-absorbant removable pads
Too warm for 10 degrees or up
You could buy a decent set of wheels for the same price as Assos’s winter tights, enough of a comparison to limit just who can really afford these, but with high cost comes premium quality that delivers on pretty much everything it sets out to do.
The level of warmth provided by the tights is exceptional, while a thick, specially-created chamois is near enough the perfect buffer on the coldest of winter rides.
Like other bib tights in the same market, it repels water well without being totally waterproof, and Assos has set aside a large proportion of the lower legs to a sealskin-like fabric that is also reflective.
Assos Mille GTO Winter Bib Tights C2: the construction
These tights are mostly made out of Assos’ OSMOS Heavy material that provides a high degree of insulation - the natural choice for a pair of winter tights. On top of this is the company’s Sphere Ultra Hole, which is a series of micro holes in the stretchy membrane-backed softshell that it claims will wick away excess heat.
The bibs are sturdy and stretchy and they stay in place throughout the ride, while at the opposite end of the product is a stretchy 'geoprene' layer that expertly repels water and fits snuggly around the lower leg without letting any water sneak inside.
A few more nice features include a rougher fabric on both upper thighs that reduces abrasion, and removable, flexible hip pads that aid breathability, and Assos claims protects the hips from impacts and abrasion in the event of a crash. Thankfully, the latter I never got to put to the test.
The sky-blue chamois is a six-layer product that offers very thick protection where the backside meets the saddle, the foam material being backed up by a micro-shock layer.
Assos Mille GTO Winter Bib Tights C2: the ride
There wasn’t any moment while putting these tights on test through a cold Pyrenean autumn that I felt like I wasn’t well insulated: for the price, they ought to have kept me warm, but they exceeded expectations. Even on one particularly bitter mountain descent, the tights kept the cool wind from my legs.
Let’s be clear at this point: these are tights for the coldest winter rides; one ride was a balmy 11 degrees and though they didn’t become uncomfortable, they were clearly too well insulated to be the appropriate choice for that weather.
While certainly stretchy and breathable, I wouldn’t take Assos’s word for it when they claim that the GTO C2 tights have a strong freedom of movement. They felt quite tight around the knee area and there were times when I had to do the readjusting, with the tights not conforming to my shape perfectly. That said, these were very minor and infrequent occurrences. Meanwhile, the straps are flexible without being loose, staying in position well.
A drier than average autumn meant that I never properly got to test the tights’ water repellence as hoped, but the neoprene water barrier on both lower legs is a terrific design that perfectly brushes off road spray. It may feel a bit like stepping into a wetsuit, but that’s something I was prepared to accept for the reassurance it provides.
A very thick chamois seemed like an overexaggeration when I first unboxed the tights, but I have since noticed the difference between Assos’s chosen chamois and others. I’ve never quite sat on a chamois that provided so much comfort, warmth and absorption of little bumps in the road.
It says a lot about how good these tights are that the only thing I didn’t like - apart from the price, of course - was a rounded plastic Assos logo measuring about 1.5cm that sat on the left thigh. It’s a strange addition that the eye’s periphery constantly thinks is a large insect. It doesn’t affect the quality of the tights nor impact on the ride, but it’s aesthetically horrible.
Value and conclusion
The little annoyances I had with the tights should not put anyone off choosing them, for it is a terrific product that will keep you warm in the harshest of conditions and leave you dry in showery rain.
There's not much value in comparing the price of the Assos Mille GTO Winter Bib Tights C2 with other tights, because they're a money-no-object product designed to be at the top of anybody's range. If you can afford them, go buy them.
However, if you're looking for a pair of tights that are lower priced, check out our guide to the best bib tights for cycling.
Sizes: XS - XXL
Chris first started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2013 on work experience and has since become a regular name in the magazine and on the website. Reporting from races, long interviews with riders from the peloton and riding features drive his love of writing about all things two wheels.
Probably a bit too obsessed with mountains, he was previously found playing and guiding in the Canadian Rockies, and now mostly lives in the Val d’Aran in the Spanish Pyrenees where he’s a ski instructor in the winter and cycling guide in the summer. He almost certainly holds the record for the most number of interviews conducted from snowy mountains.
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