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review

MAAP Pro Bib 2.0

9
£235.00

VERDICT:

9
10
Comfortable, with a superb chamois, and look great, although all this quality comes at a price
Excellent pad
Compression works well
Very good looking
Impressive wicking and breathability
Everything stays in place well
Legs a little on the long side for some
Pricey
Weight: 
213g
Contact: 

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The MAAP Pro Bib 2.0s are impressive high-end bib shorts that are comfortable on a variety of rides and in varying conditions. There is noticeable compression without the kind of tight discomfort you can sometimes find, and the textured material on the legs gives them a fairly unusual look too.

After reading Stu's glowing recommendations of the Australian company's Team Bib Evos, I was excited to give this second iteration of its bib shorts a try, and first impressions are good, with the shorts looking and feeling high quality.

The material manages to combine stretch with hold, which is something I have only really seen in the Castelli Premio Black Bib Shorts I tested last year. When I initially pulled them on they felt tight – it made me think the sizing was off for the first couple of seconds – but this is simply a case of the compression material doing its job.

This comes from the four-way stretch 3D aero structure that MAAP has used, which gives it both stretch and support simultaneously. It's quite an odd sensation at first, but after a couple of minutes in the saddle it makes perfect sense.

The support means you get the compression qualities that help with blood flow and sustained efforts, while the stretch makes for completely free movement throughout the pedal stroke. As I said, it's very similar to Castelli's Premio Blacks, but here MAAP uses panels rather than one continuous piece of fabric.

2022 MAAP Pro Bib 2.0 - legs front.jpg

In total, I counted 10 panels (including the grippers at the bottom of the legs). There are two materials used across the panels, one textured and thicker which sits on the outside of the leg, the other softer, thinner, and offering more stretch, and it's this combination that allows the shorts to feel both supportive and stretchy.

When you first touch the fabric it doesn't feel particularly breathable or something you would generally use for warmer riding, but you quickly realise this is not the case.

2022 MAAP Pro Bib 2.0 - front detail.jpg

Breathability and wicking are very impressive, not only on the chamois (I'll get on to that in a minute) but throughout. I found that moisture quickly wicked away even in areas that are sheltered from the wind, such as the backs of the legs and the lower back.

I used the shorts in temperatures up to around 22 degrees without ever wishing I was wearing something more traditionally lightweight.

Another good design feature is the placement of the inner leg seams, which in my experience can be the ones most likely to cause irritation. Rather than one seam running up the inner, here two seams hold a single panel in place and sit slightly forward and slightly back from the innermost part of the thigh.

2022 MAAP Pro Bib 2.0 - cuff.jpg
2022 MAAP Pro Bib 2.0 - leg detail back.jpg

That gripper at the base of the legs, a wide silicone strip in a tight hexagonal pattern, works well, keeping them in place very impressively – to the extent that putting them on was often a case of needing to pull the gripper away from my calves to get them over my knees. They didn't pull on my leg hairs at all, though, which was a little surprising given the strength of the grip.

2022 MAAP Pro Bib 2.0 - cuff gripper.jpg

It's a good thing it works so effectively, because these are a longer leg than most bib shorts I have used, and if I didn't adjust them correctly they would irritate the back of my knees while riding. However, because the silicone grippers work so well, and the material is so forgiving, it wasn't an issue to position them correctly before setting off, and there they would remain throughout even the longest rides. Not only would I always stay comfortable, it also meant I could keep my (faint) tan-line razor sharp.

2022 MAAP Pro Bib 2.0 - side.jpg

As with all bib shorts, they live and die by the chamois, and MAAP has absolutely knocked it out the park with its '3D Thermo Moulded multi (3 layer) density chamois'. I wore these bibs while taking advantage of the great weather over the Easter weekend and found myself riding for hours on everything from rough farm tracks and potholed back lanes, to perfectly laid tarmac, and it was incredibly comfortable throughout.

2022 MAAP Pro Bib 2.0 - chamois.jpg

This comes not only from the padding but also the way it moulds itself to the body, alongside its excellent breathability and wicking. So even though I was dripping with sweat on multiple occasions, the chamois dried very quickly and a couple of minutes later it was like I'd just pulled them on. It is also OEKO-TEX certified, which means it has been tested for harmful substances, so you know you aren't exposing your valuables to anything that could do them harm.

2022 MAAP Pro Bib 2.0 - legs back.jpg

For the straps, MAAP has used elastic (also OEKO-TEX certified) that has a fair amount of stretch but still makes sure everything stays in place well. They are wide and flat, which means they sit nicely under jerseys and I didn't notice any twisting either.

To help with breathability MAAP has included a mesh back panel so heat can escape, and it works really effectively.

2022 MAAP Pro Bib 2.0 - straps back.jpg

At the front, the shorts sit quite low, allowing for more breathability for summer use, and also making them easy to use for comfort breaks.

2022 MAAP Pro Bib 2.0 - straps front.jpg

These bibs come with an RRP of £235, which is definitely nudging the top end of the bib shorts market. However, there is no doubt these are top quality shorts, among the best I have used.

They are a fiver less than the Castelli Premio Blacks I mentioned earlier, which have gone up £20 since I tested them. They have very similar qualities, although I'd say the MAAPs have more comfortable straps.

Stu tested the Santini Redux Istinto Men's Bib Shorts last year too (you can read his review here), which are £5 less and again seem to offer the same kind of levels of comfort and quality, although I would say the MAAPs have a more innovative design.

> Buyer’s Guide: 10 of the best cycling bib shorts

Overall there is little to fault about these bib shorts. Sure they're expensive, and you might need to adjust the legs slightly, but aside from that there isn't much not to like. Breathability and wicking are excellent, the chamois is superb, and they are supremely comfortable to use for longer rides.

Verdict

Comfortable, with a superb chamois, and look great, although all this quality comes at a price

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road.cc test report

Make and model: MAAP Pro Bib 2.0

Size tested: Medium

Tell us what the product is for

MAAP says, "With an all new unique four-way stretch 3D aero structure, the re-engineered Pro Bib 2.0 delivers a firm compressive fit. Reshaped ergonomic panels provide a new level of performance, contoured to move effortlessly with the body in motion, whilst seamless raw cut knitted fabrics minimise pressure points and maximises comfort."

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

MAAP lists:

Ultimate lightweight construction utilising highly breathable and quick drying compression fabrics

4 way stretch compression fabric enhances blood flow and recovery during efforts

Unique woven structure of fabric reduces drag while enhancing aerodynamic air flow

High abrasion resistance and anti pilling function

UV protection UPF 50+

Utilises MAAP's Proprietary 3D Thermo Moulded multi (3 layer) density chamois - OEKO-TEX® Certified

Ergonomically engineered chamois has laser cut perforations for breathability and antimicrobial microfibre top liner

Reshaped, ergonomic leg panels engineered for optimal stretch, recovery and shape retention

All critical seams are flatlock stitched to eliminate abrasion

No inner leg seam eliminates saddle contact and pressure points occurring

Raw cut front top edge of bib creates a seamless fit

High airflow back mesh panel for ultimate breathability

Reflective branding and back leg tabs

Custom printed silicone hem gripper

Suspender and hems elastics are OEKO-TEX® Certified

All fabrications are Italian made and OEKO-TEX® Certified

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
9/10

Very well made, with excellent fabric choice combined with strong stitching.

Rate the product for performance:
 
9/10

Comfortable, breathable, and with noticeable compression.

Rate the product for durability:
 
8/10

The material feels robust and likely to last, potentially even in a crash.

Rate the product for fit:
 
7/10

The legs are longer than some bib shorts I've worn, but aside from that the shorts fit very well, with the stretch and supportiveness of the material allowing it to sit against the contours of the body impressively well.

Rate the product for sizing:
 
8/10

The medium fitted as expected.

Rate the product for weight:
 
8/10
Rate the product for comfort:
 
9/10

Very impressive whether I was riding on rough roads, dirt tracks, or smooth tarmac over several hours.

Rate the product for value:
 
5/10

On a par with others in the same (high) price bracket.

How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?

Very easy, I stuck them in at 30 with regular washing liquid without any issues.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Very well – they are comfortable and supportive, and have an excellent chamois.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

The combination of support and stretch.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

The leg length, although this is easily remedied.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

The Castelli Premio Black Bib Shorts I tested last year have gone up to £240; they have very similar qualities, but the MAAPs perhaps have more comfortable straps. The Santini Redux Istinto Men's Bib Shorts are £5 less and again seem to offer the same kind of levels of comfort and quality, although I would say the MAAPs have a more innovative design.

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

They may be expensive and the long legs won't suit all, but these are truly exceptional bib shorts that offer comfort, breathability, and an innovative design.

Overall rating: 9/10

About the tester

Age: 33  Height: 6 ft  Weight:

I usually ride: CAAD13  My best bike is: Cannondale Supersix Evo

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: commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed,

George spends his days helping companies deal with their cycling commuting challenges with his company Cycling for Work. He has been writing for Road.cc since 2014. 

When he is not writing about cycling, he is either out on his bike cursing not living in the countryside or boring anybody who will listen about the latest pro peloton/cycling tech/cycling infrastructure projects. 

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