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If only I had these in December! The Bontrager Velocis Softshell Cycling Gloves are fantastic for the depths of winter. They are incredibly warm, block all wind and stand up to some pretty heavy rain. The dexterity is decent too, and the fingertips work well enough on a touchscreen. I'm almost looking forward to next winter...
Well okay, that's pushing it a bit, but after weeks of frozen hands, I'm glad to have the Velocis Softshells for winter's final gasps. Bontrager uses 200g Thinsulate for a recommended temperature range of -7°C to 7°C, and I did get to use them on sub-zero days – if not right down to minus seven.
Certainly I never reached their lower limit. Even when stopped or descending long hills, I never felt any sense of my hands getting cold. The warmth is impressive, though once it turns mild they can get a bit sweaty.
I'd say Bontrager's temperature range is about right, though if you're riding long, hard climbs they get a bit sweaty around the top end of that. They're best saved for the coldest days.
If they do get sweaty, you need to be careful when pulling them off as you risk pulling the liner out with your hand. That liner is very soft, at least, and very comfortable. There are no weird lines of stitching to irritate either.
Thankfully you won't need to take them off to operate your phone. There's a conductive weave in the fingertips and, while the size of the fingertips makes it slightly cumbersome, I could Instagram to my heart's content while still wearing these gloves.
There's no padding on the palm, which is a good move in my opinion as dexterity would only drop, and they're very comfortable as they are.
Bontrager extends the soft snot wipe all the way along the thumb and forefinger, which gives a a lot of real estate for wiping, and stops any particular spot from getting... snotterlogged? Sorry.
The outers are windproof and water resistant, rather than actually waterproof, but the resistance is good and keeps out a fair amount of rain. And even when they start to get saturated, they stay warm.
Having used these for a bit of mountain biking as well, I tested the durability quite thoroughly. Plenty of brambles and the odd tree has scraped along the backs, and nothing has ripped. That bodes well for longevity.
At £59.99 they're a decent amount of cash to put down on a pair of gloves but for me, it's well spent if you're looking for warmth above all else.
Although they're not as warm, Spatz has the Thrmoz Deep Winter Gloves at £79.99, so you can easily spend more; but if you'd rather not, Decathlon has the Triban 900 Winter Cycling Gloves at £24.99. The Triban does the same job as the Velocis very well, though in a more basic way.
All in, with the excellent warmth on sub-zero days, decent breathability, good resistance to rain and excellent comfort, the Bontrager Velocis Softshell Cycling Gloves are a great buy for the deepest of winters.
Brilliant for the coldest days, and fend off a fair bit of rain too
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Bontrager Velocis Softshell Cycling Gloves
Size tested: L
Tell us what the product is for
Bontrager says this is: "A highly dexterous unpadded glove that keeps you warm on cold rides and is soft on the skin."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Softshell fabric is wind and water-resistant for inclement weather protection
200g Thinsulate traps heat to keep hands warm and dry without compromising dexterity
The non-padded design provides ultimate connection and control
A soft fleece thermal lining adds next-to-skin comfort and warmth
A soft nose wipe on thumb to rid frosty noseicles
Conductive thread creates touchscreen-compatible fingertips
Wetgrip palm provides exceptional bar control and grip
No concerns at all.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Wash cool and dry on the radiator – easy.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
They keep my hands warm. I wish I'd had them at the start of winter!
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Oh so cosy when the temperature drops towards zero.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Nothing much, to be honest.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
They're towards the top end. Spatz has the Thermoz Deep Winter Gloves at £79.99, so you can easily spend more, but many are less – Decathlon has the Triban 900 Winter gloves at £24.99, for instance.
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 overall score
Great gloves for the cold weather. These are cosy, comfortable, have decent dexterity and see off a good bit of rain. They're very well made, too – only a lower price and perhaps a better-fixed liner could seriously improve them.
About the tester
I usually ride: Cannondale Supersix Di2 My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, club rides, general fitness riding, I specialise in the Cafe Ride!
Son of a Marathon runner, Nephew of a National 24hr Champion, the racing genetics have completely passed him by. After joining the road.cc staff in 2016 as a reviewer, Liam quickly started writing feature articles and news pieces. After a little time living in Canada, where he spent most of his time eating poutine, Liam returned with the launch of DealClincher, taking over the Editor role at the start of 2018. At the weekend, Liam can be found racing on the road both in the UK and abroad, though he prefers the muddy fields of cyclocross. To date, his biggest race win is to the front of the cafe queue.