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The Galibier Ardennes Light Winter Gloves are great. They're warm, comfortable, slim, well shaped and well made. What more do you want? Cheap? Oh yes, they're cheap as well.
Between the name Galibier has given these – 'Light Winter' – and the praise I've heaped on them above, there's really not much more to say. They're great. Get some. They don't cost much.
The AX Suede palm extends beneath your fingers for great grip on the controls, and the silicone pads provide even more grip plus effective, unobtrusive padding where your weight is resting.
The back is a mixture of perforated and solid fabric, and to be honest I never felt any difference in temperature or wind protection between the areas – these gloves just get on so quietly with being comfortable that, as I rode, I rarely had reason to think of them.
When I did it was usually because they were getting a little hot, as the weather during the test was pretty mild and occasionally (gasp) even warm. Galibier puts their upper limit at 12°C, which seems very accurate, though I found them okay even a few degrees above that.
I suspect I might want liners at the 2°C Galiber says is their lower limit, and would be happier a few degrees higher than that if wearing these alone, but then my hands are always cold. The spring weather hasn't let me actually test them any lower than 6°C, but certainly the windproofing and insulation feel just right for Galibier's claims in general.
The neoprene cuffs are a good length for sealing with jerseys and jackets, and I found the slim, stretchy but not skintight fit (with perfectly judged fingers and thumbs) very easy to get on and pretty easy to get off, even with slightly sweaty hands.
I used these a lot both on the road bike and my mountain bike, and found them equally no-fuss effective on both. Although they're pretty cheap, they don't look or feel it – the raised logo and the swoops of fabric are classy touches. They come in six sizes too, which is impressive.
The only real 'budget' signs are the occasional untrimmed thread, though the stitching itself is unaffected and strong.
At £23.64 these are considerably cheaper than a great deal of gloves. The Chrome Midweight Cycle Gloves are £47, for instance (read our review of them here), while the Assos Assosoires Winter Gloves are £70 (review here).
Even the Santini Water Repellent Mid-Season Unisex Gloves I reviewed last year, which do a very similar job almost magically well (though without the same windproofing), are £45.
These gloves would score highly if they were around the £45 mark, so the fact that they're basically half that price is only more impressive. They're excellent for any kind of cycling in what you might reasonably assume were 'light winter' conditions.
Comfortable, warm and well made – yet far cheaper than many rivals
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Galibier Ardennes Light Winter Gloves
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for
Galibier says: "Our goal was a winter glove which offered windproof, thermal insulation without ANY bulk. Our search went around the globe. The gloves are made from a single layer German membrane which is only 1.4mm thick. This provides an amazing amount of insulation, which we have tried at 2 degreesC and no cold fingers."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
"The palm is double wrapped with Korean AX Seude WP. This is the industry leading material for durability and is among the most expensive to manufacture. The silicone is heat applied to the palm, giving you superb grip to prevent hands slipping on wet bar tape. the thin nature of the glove provides excellent 'feel' for the bars and handling.
"The Glove is completed by a 35mm neoprene cuff and a pair (L) weighs only 62grams.
"The Ardennes gloves are fully machine washable and double stitched in all contact areas. Temperature range 2-12°C."
Like a glove... arf.
Accurate. These come in a handy (also arf) six sizes.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Wash without issues.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Very well – they're warm, comfortable and well made.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
They're far cheaper than most opposition, yet don't feel it.
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
These do everything you could reasonably ask for a price that's way below much of the competition. They're excellent.
About the tester
I usually ride: Vitus Zenium SL VR Disc My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: A few times a week I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: general fitness riding, mtb,