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The Assos Dyora RS Bib Shorts combine a race fit and performance with exceptional comfort and a pad that is up to serious mileage. They're expensive, but the investment will serve you well throughout spring, summer and autumn.
If you don't race, don't be put off by the fact that Dyora shorts come from Assos's 'Race Series'. If you value a good fit on the bike, regardless of your pace, these are worth digging into your pocket for.
Assos labels these as 'Summer' bibs, but that's not entirely appropriate either; the shorts are just as good for temperatures in the low to mid-teens as they are in the mid-20s. They will stretch beyond one season for sure – good for getting your money's worth.
I've made full use of them on the road bike for the duration of the test period, both with leg/knee warmers and bare legs. This has been for anything from short, pacier outings to long endurance rides of over four hours. Basically, they are up to anything road-based in a wide range of temperatures.
The shorts are a snug fit, clearly designed for racing and more performance-focused riding. Even with this compression I would say that they are still exceptionally comfortable. They don't pinch or feel restrictive anywhere. Using Assos's size guide, I selected a medium to test and the fit was perfect. (It's not me in the photos.)
Despite being summer shorts, Assos has kept a decent leg length. I prefer a longer leg in my shorts. As a reference, I found the Santini Legends too short.
The Dyora RS chamois is a layered setup: a superAir microShock foam with a 3D waffle top sheet, using Assos-exclusive Golden Gate technology. Technical terms aside, a really dense foam pad sits under a layer of soft, grey, antibacterial microfibre fabric which is attached to the shorts with stitching at the front and rear.
If you are an Assos fan, you'll likely have encountered Golden Gate technology already; Assos was already using it back in 2016. The absence of stitching at the sides is intended to allow the pad to move with you, rather than with the shorts. It works – I never experienced rubbing from the edge of the chamois with Golden Gate, however long I was riding for.
The pad has not deteriorated in the slightest during the test period either. It really does bounce back to its intended form after compression, making it a great shock absorber on rougher roads.
The outstanding support and performance do come at a cost, though, and it's my only gripe with the shorts: the pad retains moisture to a greater extent than most other inserts in my experience. The dense foam holds the moisture away from the overlay, so there are no issues with discomfort, but be aware that the pad takes a LONG time to dry out after washing.
The A-lock strap design, which is attached to the shorts at specific points to help keep the shorts locked in place, is the most significant feature change from last season's Laalalai Shorts. The system was rolled out on the Men's Equipe range last year. Liam tested it on the Spring Fall shorts back in November.
The straps have varying degrees of elasticity. There's a single section of elastic material, folded over on itself, forming a supportive A-frame that delivers limited vertical stretch in the rear. Then, above the 'X' junction there's a more flexible material incorporating an antibacterial carbon weave, to wick moisture and lie flat in the front.
I did wonder just how much of a difference this setup could make; indeed, it felt a little odd when I first pulled it on. However, I can quite honestly say these are the most comfortable shorts I have ridden in for a long time. There is simply no shift of the chamois, however you move, in or out of the saddle. Whether I was making micro-shifts while riding hard or looking to change position while completing endurance rides, I never once needed to 'attend' to the shorts, nor did I sense any form of abrasion or hot spots.
There are two further bonuses of the A-lock strap design. Firstly, it has allowed Assos to do away with any excess mesh or panelling at the front or rear. Initially you feel like the shorts stop short, but it ultimately adds to their performance as it encourages airflow and minimises overheating of the torso and lower back.
Secondly, the system forces the straps to sit further out to the side than on a traditional bib setup. This will please women with larger breasts who struggle with the positioning of straps.
The fabric of the main shorts is lightweight – 200g/m2 – with a 50+ UPF rating. I found it quick drying and didn't have issues with overheating under the hot sun. It's silky soft against the skin. Assos claims a 30 per cent seam reduction – it all adds to a superior level of comfort.
A win, in my opinion, is the lack of silicone on the leg grippers. There is simply a wide, elastane band. I found it offered enough compression to hold the shorts in place without 'squeezing' the thigh to create an unsightly groove.
As you'd expect from Assos, these are a seriously well-made pair of shorts, with a professional finish that justifies the price and should increase longevity. Where the bibs meet the shorts, Assos has over-sewn a suede-like patch, while the raw-cut upper edge at the waist is reinforced with a soft, flexible tape.
Assos claims that the Type.441 fabric used for the shorts has odour control properties and is 'extremely durable'. There are certainly no lingering odours detectable, though a longer test period would be needed to verify this claim.
Assos offers an impressive warranty; it'll repair any manufacturing fault that is detected in its products within two years of purchase, or replace the product, on a case by case basis. After that, Assos will still try to repair your garment depending upon fabric wear and tear. If you happen to crash in the kit within three months of purchase, you might be able to get a replacement under its crash policy.
At £175 these are certainly not cheap, but they're not alone: you could pay £176 for a pair of Ashmei's bib shorts and, for me, the Dyora Shorts win hands down in every category. And Rapha's Souplesse Detachable Bib Shorts are £195...
If your budget isn't that big, or you are willing to compromise on certain aspects, Liv's Signature Bibs are a good option, if slightly less breathable and with a shorter leg (not necessarily a negative).
A pair of shorts that you are unaware of because they are so comfortable is surely what everyone wants, and the Assos Dyora are exactly this. I simply can't fault the performance, fit or comfort. Yes, they come at a high price, but in this case I honestly think it's fully justified.
Simply outstanding shorts in every aspect, worth every penny of their high price tag
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Assos Dyora RS Summer Bib Shorts
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for
Assos says, 'The fastest, most comfortable women's bib shorts we've created to date. This is DYORA, the ultimate race series for women athletes, engineered with a female-specific fit, all-new insert, and ultralight textiles demanded by racers and serious cyclists alike.'
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
A-Lock Engineering: S9 racingFit system comprising new textiles and technologies working in harmony to stabilize the shorts and secure the insert in place.
Butterfly Pattern: The primary textile panel fully wrapping the lower back and legs, coming together in the rear. Fewer seams leads to a more uniform hold, less weight, and greater comfort.
Type.441: A patented 40-gauge warp knit, developed specifically for compressive hold and silky comfort. 200g/m2, UPF 50+, moisture wicking (idroFil fastDry), iceColor, odorControl, and extremely durable.
rollBar: A patented bracing design that mimics a race car's anti-sway bar by using the bib straps to stabilize the insert and lock it in place as your weight transfers from left to right while cornering.
ergoBox: A square pattern construction that effectively frames the insert in the back, boxing it in for added stability.
Carbon Xbib: A single section of elastic material''folded over on itself''forming a supportive A-frame that delivers limited vertical stretch in the rear. Above the 'X' junction, a more flexible material is employed, incorporating an antibacterial carbon weave, to wick moisture and lay flat in the front.
zeroWaist: A raw-cut, tape-reinforced edge for the smoothest transition possible between the body and fabric panel. More comfort with less pressure.
Ultralight Leg Grippers: New Lycra/elastane leg band structure naturally grips the thigh''free of silicone treatment''to deliver a smooth, ultralight hold.
30% Seam Reduction: Flatter seams throughout, with fewer overall, translates to more comfort and lower overall weight (165g).
DYORA RS Insert: Antibacterial microfiber booster top sheet in 3D basalt colorway. Pays homage to the lava stone that gives us strength, stability, and courage.
superAir microShock foam: A lightweight open cell foam with a shock absorbing composition that returns to its original position, filling the gap every time pedaling position is changed in the saddle through the shift of weight.
3D waffle: A patented, three-layer perforated foam that increases breathability and eliminates excess weight.
Surface Reduction Design: Insert footprint reduced from previous UMA pattern to shed extra grams.
goldenGate: A patented technology that interrupts the stitching along both of the insert's side panels, allowing a more three-dimensional freedom of movement in this sensitive, rotational area.
Composition: 80%PA 20%EA
Unique, with top quality you would expect from this price tag.
Finishing details should enhance durability.
Spot on. Assos hasn't skimped on leg length like some do, though obviously this is personal preference.
I followed the size guide on the Assos website, which put me a medium. This was perfect. Stay true to size.
Possibly the most comfortable shorts I have ever ridden in.
Quality comes with a high price tag... If these last, as is my experience with Assos, you should get your money's worth.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Fine, according to the instructions. However, be aware that the chamois is like a sponge; it retains the water and takes a LONG time to dry out.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Brilliantly, I can't fault them.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Comfort and fit.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The time it takes for the chamois to dry after washing. A minor gripe given the comfort and performance they offer.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
Significantly pricier, but still not the most expensive.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? A rich one, yes.
Use this box to explain your overall score
The comfort and fit of these shorts are second to none. I genuinely believe that this, in addition to the quality of construction and finish, justify the price. I have only knocked the score down to a 9 because of the excessive drying time required for the chamois.
About the tester
I usually ride: Road My best bike is: Carbon road.
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, touring, club rides, general fitness riding, Getting to grips with off roading too!
Emma’s first encounters with a road bike were in between swimming and running. Soon after competing for GB in the World Age Group Triathlon Championships in Edmonton in 2001 she saw the light and decided to focus on cycling.
After a couple of half decent UK road seasons racing for Leisure Lakes, she went out to Belgium to sample the racing there and spent two years with Lotto-Belisol Ladies team, racing alongside the likes of Sara Carrigan, Grace Verbeke, Rochelle Gilmore and Lizzie Deignan. Emma moved from Lotto-Belisol to Dutch team Redsun, then a new Belgian team of primarily developing riders, where there was less pressure, an opportunity to share her experience and help build a whole new team; a nice way to spend her final years of professional racing.
Since retiring Emma has returned to teaching. When not coercing kids to do maths, she is invariably out on two wheels. In addition to the daily commute, Emma still enjoys getting out on her road bike and having her legs ripped off on the local club rides and chain gangs. She has also developed an addiction to touring, with destinations including Iceland, Georgia and Albania, to mention just a few. There have also been rare sightings of Emma off-road on a mountain bike…