No frills can still mean no chills with the Endura Xtract bib tights. Sumptuously warm, and great as an alternative to thermal shorts and leg warmers, some will find the lack of technical attributes and bulky padding not for them, but others will love the easy wearing affordability. .
Soft fleece inner
Female and male specific fit options
Marmite gel padding
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Staying warm on the bike is key to enjoying cycling, but if the cost of cold weather kit feels as expensive as buying the bike all over again, then the Endura Xtract bib tights could be the answer to your winter riding woes.
With high end brand Assos launching it's latest wallet wincing winter collection, which includes the £575 johDah jacket and £335 RS S9 bib tights, the Endura Xtract bib tights at just £69.99 seem to be a much more palatable option.
Assos Vs Endura
Clearly you can't pitch a pair of sub £70 Endura Xtract bib tights against a pair of £335 Assos RS S9 ones, or even it's "entry level" £165 Mille GT ones.
The biggest cost in cycling clothing is fabric, with the longer the list of technical attributes, the higher the price tag. So in order to deliver the Endura Xtract bib tights for a significantly more accessible price point, the Scottish brand have chosen to keep things simple with a standard Roubaix fleece fabric throughout.
The lack of waterproofing, compression or other highly sophisticated material of the Endura Xtract bib tights will limit the bib tight's weather window, but in terms of basic warmth, the Roubaix fleece will be more than adequate.
Both the male and female versions feature ankle grippers, and insulating up and over bib straps, gender specific 400 Series antibacterial multi-density gel pads and elements of reflective detailing.
I used the Endura sizing chart to get the right fit, finding that the women's small fitted really well.
I'd put the 400 Series Chamios on a par with the C3W pad that's found in the Santini Legend bib shorts. Measuring around 12cm across at it's narrowest and up to 1.5cm of gel insert.
If you are looking for bulk/ enjoy a Santini gel pad, then you'll get on well, but for me personally I found it too wide and bulky at the sides to be an A1 fit.
A non-negotiable for all bottom halves is stay put padding, especially when the lack of wind-cheating or water resist fabric in this area can be especially uncomfortable if the undercarriage sags. So, although nappy-ish, thankfully the padding of the Endura Xtract bib tights did stayed in place while riding, and therefore as comfortable as possible.
On a grey autumnal day in the hills, the tights were great at keeping me warm without over heating, nicely bridging the seasonal gap, and while not offering an awful lot more protection between a thermal pair of shorts and leg warmers, they were a lot more comfortable.
I'd actually go as far as saying that with their softness they felt so sumptuous, making me reluctant to get changed once off the bike, wanting their cosy hug to continue well after the ride.
With a sub £70 price tag, the Endura Xtract bib tights are a great purchase. On the whole I found them great for keeping me warm on the bike, as long as the elements weren't totally against me.
If the padding was less cumbersome, they would have become my perfect pair of no frill bib tights, if fact, without the padding they would have struggled to take the thermal tights off full stop.
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