Assos has long been a byword for quality, and its standout products have always been its bib shorts, considered by many cyclists to be simply the best that (quite a lot of) money can buy. Costing £100, the T.MilleShorts_s7 offer exceptional comfort and fit for the money and might just be the best bib shorts you can buy at this price.
The T.MilleShorts_s7 are a new entry-level design for the company, and combine much of the design, features and padded insert of the neoPro_s7 shorts previously tested by road.cc and which they now replace, but with a more accommodating fit. Top-level comfort for those not sharing the same BMI as Chris Froome, then.
Key to the comfort of the shorts is the purple padded insert. It's one of the best on the market. It comprises 8mm-thick memory foam with a waffle and perforated composition, providing the dimpled surface, to increase the breathability and increase comfort. The way the pad is attached to the shorts is different from the norm. A 'goldenGate' construction sees the chamois stitched to the bib shorts only at the front and back, leaving the midsection to move independently of the shorts; it also removes seams from a potentially delicate area.
The chamois feels instantly comfortable the moment you pull the shorts on, even before you get on the saddle in a way that few other shorts manage. It's without a doubt one of the most comfortable padded inserts I've tested, providing superb seated comfort without much bulk at all.
Assos says the shorts are designed for long rides in the saddle and a couple of seven-hour rides are testament to that claim. No issues whatsoever on those long rides. The goldenGate might sound like a gimmick but it does appear to create a more harmonic interface between the chamois and your undercarriage, improving the freedom of movement and eliminating friction and chafing concerns.
The fit of the shorts is excellent. The focus on making them a little more generous in the waist has worked well, striking the balance between the need to be slightly compressive to hold everything in place but not restrictive. The wide, flat bib straps are placed out wide which further enhances the comfort as does the low waistband – which makes nature breaks easy – and there's no unwanted pressure over the shoulders, and the mesh back panel adds breathability.
The bib shorts are made from the company's own Type.429 Lycra and it is soft to the touch with an expensive feel about it. It's a supportive fabric with a bit of compression noticeable, and the panels are cut in such a way that the shorts fit perfectly in every area. It's a durable and hard-wearing fabric, too: with hundreds of miles racked up on and off-road and dozens of machine washes, they're not showing any sign of distress. The Lycra copes well in the heat or really high-intensity rides that produce a lot of sweat and feels noticeably drier for longer than some other shorts in the same testing conditions.
Wide hems with gripper tape keep the legs in place with no discomfort at any point during a ride, and contribute to the overall comfort. Branding and details on the shorts are low-key, just a few small Assos logos. A couple of reflective details on the backs of the legs is a nice touch for commuting and evening rides when you want a bit of extra visibility.
For many, £100 is still a lot of money to spend on a pair of bib shorts, but if you want to make an investment in your cycling wardrobe, especially if you've got some big long-distance rides planned this summer, you really can't go wrong with the T.MilleShorts_s7 shorts. Comfortable, well fitting and durable shorts.
Seriously impressive comfort and a great fit puts these shorts up among the best
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Assos T.Mille_s7 bib shorts
Size tested: small
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?
Assos says: "Furthering the question of 'What are my ASSOS shorts?' we have listened to your feedback and developed the T.milleShorts_s7 as our entry-level comfortFit shorts. As the latest evolution of the T.neoPro_s7 shorts, the all-new mille shorts, with a wider cut waist, are perfect for those looking for increased comfort at a great price.
"As with all our shorts, they are designed to be worn next to the skin. Team these shorts with one of our skinFoil base layers as well as an ASSOS jersey to complete your outfit. If you are a rider whose wardrobe choices are based on comfort then we recommend pairing the mille shorts with our brand new SS.centoJersey_evo8. A new product for Summer 17, this jersey is the perfect match for these shorts.
"With the S7 generation of the industry-leading technology at its core, these shorts bring you the ultimate in comfort at a great price. The new daily workhorse for riders looking for more comfort is finally here. So let's end as we began: ask yourself the question 'What are your ASSOS shorts?'"
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
_ New entry-level comfortFit shorts
_ Wider cut in the waist
_ Replaces the neoPro shorts, leverages the technology used in them
£100 is a lot to spend on bib shorts but these are a solid choice. They also make it hard to justify spending more.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Very easy to look after.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Fro short and long rides they provide superb comfort and performance.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The padded insert steals the show, but the material in the shorts is luxurious and breathable too.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Isn't really anything to dislike.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your score
Seriously impressive shorts and a good investment if you want proper long distance comfort.
About the tester
I usually ride: My best bike is:
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: road racing, time trialling, cyclo-cross, commuting, touring, mountain biking
David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.