The Ascanio long sleeve jersey from Italian clothing maker Moa is brilliant, warm with an excellent cut but the cost puts it on the podium of 'Most expensive jerseys tested at road.cc', catchy title I know. Can £164.99 for a jersey be justified?
It's a windproof jersey with some added water repellance thanks to plenty of technical fabrics and coatings. On the most exposed panels like the chest, neck and shoulders it uses a three-layer fabric that includes a membrane to keep you warm yet allowing body heat to escape as it's wicked away by the layer closest to your skin.
In other areas that don't require the full on membrane treatment the windproofing is dealt with by a 'breathable air-resistant coating' say Moa. This allows the fabric to be lightweight and thin just like a normal summer jersey which also keeps the weight down.
It all works very well indeed as considering how warm the Ascanio keeps you even in temperatures around the freezing mark you don't end up soaked in your own sweat. By changing base layers you can make the Moa work from low single figures up to about 15°C without overheating.
Added over the entire jersey is a water repellent treatment that makes light rain and drizzle bead off plus it works on oil and mud. This is to stop the contaminants from getting deep into the fibres and causing staining, important on versions like we're testing which has white panels.
All these coatings are designed to withstand washing as long as you do it on a maximum of 30°C. The Ascianio has had plenty of washes over the last six weeks and is still coming up pristine after each one. The coatings still seem to be doing the business too.
Being Italian designed and manufactured you're probably best to go a size up, more for length in the body and arms than anything else. The cut is close for aerodynamics and comfort with a dropped tail to provide plenty of coverage for when you're in the drops. The neck is high and close fitting to which does a great job of keeping the drafts out plus the zip garage stops anything irritating your throat.
You get your usual three pockets at the rear which are deep enough to hold a phone and the like without worrying about coming out in the racing tuck. The tight material means there is little in the way of sag too. The pockets are positioned well; it's easy to get things in and out while on the fly.
Keeping things in place are a silicone gripper at the cuffs and waist which do their job without being obtrusive. The waist grips your shorts or tights so the jersey doesn't ride up at all as you move around on the bike.
Here we go then, that all important value for money conundrum. Is it worth £165? Nope.
It's a really good jersey, no doubt about it, well made and so warm considering how thin the material is but I couldn't bring myself to lay down that kind of cash. It doesn't offer the kind of water resistant levels of the Gabba or the Café Du Cycliste Marie-Josette jersey (which are both cheaper) to be truly versatile enough to warrant its asking price.
Overall I love the Ascianio especially on cold dry days because you can get away with wearing such a thin jersey and baselayer while remaining warm. Plus the fit is really good with the material feeling soft against your skin. It is just plain and simple too expensive.
Top notch, cold weather jersey both in performance and looks but with a hard to justify price tag
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Make and model: Moa Asccanio Windproof Long Sleeve jersey
Size tested: Large
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
The Ascianio is a top level performance jersey which has great windproof qualites thanks to some interesting materials. The slim fit will steer it more towards the racing snakes.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Moisture is generated on the skin through transpiration. The fabric absorbs this moisture and quickly wicks it away. The optimized synthetic fibre carries out constant evaporation and more effective heat exchange. The result is a sensation of freshness on the skin.
* resists delicate washing
The leading-edge waterproof treatment repels water thanks to the pearl effect. Oil and mud are repelled in the same way, so that they cannot penetrate into the textile fibers. This treatment makes garments easier to be cleaned.
A new direction in research and development of breathable air-resistant coatings. Thanks to the unique structure and composition (100% pu) of the polymer, this is a concrete solution for creating highly protective fabrics and garments with truly long-lasting performance, strong and at the same time soft, elastic and light.
* unequalled stretch and shape recovery
* permeability to water vapour (breathability): 500/m2x24h uni 4818 part 26
* permeability to air: wind resistance 15mm/s uni en iso 9237/97
* resistant to dry cleaning and machine washing at 30°c
* Sizing - S to 3XL
* Available in black, white, red and grey
Neat and tidy finish, looks and feels like a quality product.
Very impressive in the wind with a good temperature range.
There are warnings on the jersey to remove watches and the like before putting it so I'm guessing it could be deemed as a little on the fragile side. I haven't bothered though and haven't had any tearing issues.
Very thin and lightweight for such a warm and breathable jersey.
A nice fit and soft against the skin.
It seems expensive for what it is even considering the performance.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Its a great windproof and very comfortable, water resistance is okay as well for light rain.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The fit and warmth.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? No, too expensive.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?
I really like this jersey and if it was forty or fifty quid cheaper it would be right up there on the scores but I just feel as though it gives enough to warrant the investment so therefore loses a couple of stars.
Age: 36 Height: 180cm Weight: 76kg
I usually ride: Kinesis T2 My best bike is: Kinesis Aithien
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed,
With 20 years of road cycling and over 150,000 miles in his legs it's safe to say Stu is happiest when on the bike whatever the weather. Since writing his first review for road.cc back in 2009 he has also had a career in engineering including 3D-CAD design and product development, so has a real passion for all of the latest technology coming through in the industry but is also a sucker for a classic steel frame, skinny tyres, rim brakes and a damn good paintjob.
His fascination with gravel bikes is getting out of control too!