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Shimano Advanced bibshorts review

22 Jun 2021

Lightweight, fuss-free shorts for summer rides

Cyclist Rating: 
Lightweight • Breathable • Summer-ready fabrics • Comfy gripper-free legs
Ideally limited to hotter days only • Thin chamois might not be supportive enough for some

At the time of writing, the month of May 2021 had seen just one day when the temperature exceeded 20°C. Thankfully, that one day was just one of the many on which I’ve pulled on the Shimano Advanced bibshorts and rode off for a few hours of ‘me time’.

Why ‘thankfully’? Well, these are some impressive shorts for when the temperatures are soaring. Sadly, the rest of the month was somewhat disappointing in the tanning department, but this has also given a perfect opportunity to assess whether these bibshorts are suitable for anything other than sunny rides.

The short answer is, ‘not really’. But they're ideal for the hotter days in the saddle.


Fabric of time

Shimano has imbued the Advanced bibshorts with some of the stretchiest polyester/elastane mix you’re ever likely to wrap your legs and lower torso in. What this does mean is that there is next to no resistance to movement when you’re wearing them – the material is just on the cusp of feeling like a tightly woven mesh, it’s that thin and stetchy.

Buy the Shimano Advanced bibshorts now from Freewheel

What this lack of resistance translates into is a silky smooth pedalling action, not to mention cooler skin on baking hot days. On the aforementioned single summery day of May, even the gentlest breeze seemed to permeate the fabric, assisting greatly with temperature regulation.

Add to this a particularly meshy bib fabric to help dissipate built-up hot air, and you’ve a decent option for toasty riding. Chillier weather? They’re OK worn under chamois-less tights, and just about bearable with leg warmers.


Comfort over performance

The Shimano Advanced bibshorts don’t bend you over into a racing crouch, they don’t offer the minutest aerodynamic gains – they let you get on with enjoying your riding.

Beyond their extreme stretchiness, the lack of gripper on the legs is actually a breath of fresh air. OK, so they do ride up a tiny bit as the hours progress, and you’re not going to cultivate perfectly crisp tanlines (if that’s your thing), but equally if you’re not the smooth-legged type, neither are you going to feel like the hem is trying to wax your leg hair off when you pull the shorts on.

The breathable ‘Performance 8’ chamois is so named because it’s reckoned to be best suited to rides up to eight hours. Being blessed with a narrow rump, sub-70kg bulk and a recent bikefit, I was perfectly secure and comfy in this department.

Heavier riders, or those whose riding positions demand more pressure to be applied to the nose of a saddle, might not favour it.


Summer sale?

Living in the UK, my major misgiving when it comes to the Shimano Advanced bibshorts is the relative lack of use they’re likely to receive, suited as they are to the hotter days of the year.

However, if you’re an utterly fair weather rider (and there’s nothing wrong with that), they’ll see you right for a summer of riding.

Buy the Shimano Advanced bibshorts now from Freewheel

They’re not the one pair of shorts that you’ll reach for no matter what the occasion or climate, but in the heat of mid-summer you’ll be glad of their minimal bulk and maximal comfort.


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