There was definitely a chill in the air this morning as October kicked off, and that means the cold weather gear is now flying through the office doors. Here are some of the highlights from our latest crop of test products, including some items definitely built for keeping the cold out...
75 quid, for gloves? That's what Castelli are asking for these winter warmers, designed for 'cool, not freezing' conditions to cover off all but the chilliest days. They're slim-fitting gloves that provide plenty of wind protection without leaving your palms sweaty, and they're entirely fleece-backed to keep the warmth in. Castelli's double Thermoflex material, stretchy enough to be able to slip on with ease and put on under jersey or jacket cuffs. They also tick off the high-vis box with some reflective transfers to help you be seen. Considering UK winters rarely get totally baltic, are they worth the large outlay considering they will be just right for most wintery conditions? Read Ash Quinlan's review soon...
Giant have gone high-end with these pro level kicks as worn by Team Sunweb this year, with a 100% thermoset carbon ExoBeam outsole combined with two BOA dials and an 'ExoWrap' support system to fit any foot shape and arch type. The sockliner is also removable with tunable arch support and the 'TransTextura Plus' antimicrobial layer to keep your shoes fresh. Of course Giant are claiming these shoes provide top notch power transfer, with the ExoBeam plate giving ultimate stiffness while being super light. Are they Giants amongst some of the best road shoes out there? Stu's review is due shortly...
These socks are all-purpose, and described as 'element repellent' suitable for any outdoor activity. They have merino wool liners to offer a combination of quick-drying, moisture wicking and breathability, with a cushioned footbed for additional comfort. They look very cosy indeed, but are they warm and functional enough to allow you to go without overshoes on the bike? Read Mike Stead's verdict soon.
These unusually-shaped lights are also indicators, that you can operate via a remote control mounted to your handlebars. The rear red light is 30 lumens and the front white light is 100 lumens, plenty bright enough for urban areas, and all the controls are wireless with adjustable levels of brightness and different light modes. There's also an automatic brake light, thanks to an accelerometer that measures the motion of the cyclist and triggers when you're braking hard. Does our reviewer Mike Stenning think these lights/indicators are the business, or is he getting mixed signals? The verdict is coming soon...
Merlin's gravel/adventure bike comes with a double-butted alloy frame, carbon fork and full 10-speed Shimano Tiagra groupset, to give a sensibly specced all-round bike for commuting, gravel and occasional off-road forays. you also get Kenda Kwick 35mm tyres and mechanical disc brakes for simple yet powerful stopping power, and the geometry is described as relaxed so you can ride it all day.
After cobbling together a few hundred quid during his student days off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story), Jack bought his first road bike at the age of 20 and has been hooked ever since. He was Staff Writer at 220 Triathlon magazine for two years before joining road.cc in 2017, and reports on all things tech as well as editing the road.cc live blog. He is also the news editor of our electric-powered sister site eBikeTips. Jack's preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking (the latter being another long story), and on Sunday afternoons he can often be found on an M5 service station indulging in his favourite post-race meal of 20 chicken nuggets, a sausage roll, caramel shortbread and a large strawberry milkshake.