review

Assos RoboCap

7
£40.00

VERDICT:

7
10
Great at what it does but it's hard to justify the outlay against the competition
Weight: 
32g
Contact: 

The skull cap is one of those little essentials that helps to pack out the winter cyclist's wardrobe, and the Assos RoboCap is one that has been on the market since forever. We've got the latest S7 version here and it's really very good, as it bloody well should be for 40 quid!

  • Pros: Unobtrusive under a helmet, warm
  • Cons: Expensive

Most skull caps are simple, thin, beanie-style hats that just pull down over your head, made of a simple Lycra or fleecy fabric. Assos has gone for a bit more detail here, which goes a little way to justifying that high pricing.

> Find your nearest dealer here

The fabric is a mix of 54% polyamide, 20% polyester and 17% elastane, and it's soft to the touch, with a fleece lining on the inside to trap body heat. It's quite thin, though it does keep you warm and blocks out the worst of the wind chill. It also means it fits comfortably under your helmet with minimal adjustment.

Rarely for a hat, it isn't a one-size-fits-all job; it comes in sizes 0 (48-53cm), I (53-58cm) and II (58-63cm), so a decent range. I had the middle one because my helmet size is 56cm and the fit was fine, close without being tight.

Around the forehead and covering the ears, the fabric is doubled up to protect the most vulnerable areas, which is great for those ice-cold days. The good thing is, the material thickness doesn't affect your hearing levels either.

The seams run internally but they are small and soft so you don't get any irritation there.

Front and rear you get reflective strips that sit just below the rim of your helmet; it's a token gift but hey, every little helps.

Either side you also get two elasticated loops to pass your glasses through. To be honest it's nothing more than a gimmick really, as the arms of most glasses are smaller in diameter than the loops so they aren't really holding anything, plus without the aid of a mirror you're going to struggle to line things up.

Value then, how does it stack up?

Virtually every other skull cap we've tested is at least half the price. Galibier's Dolomiti is just £11.61 plus it does a Thermo + version for just a couple of quid more, which is more like the Assos.

> Buyer's Guide: The best cycling clothing to keep you warm in winter

Even Lazer's Genesis Winter Cap, designed to work with its own helmets, is just £19.99, though it does have a few faults.

The Robocap is very good. Insulation is great and you barely notice you are wearing it, but there is no way I'd pay full whack for it. Shop around, though, because you can get it with quite a discount, and it's currently reduced in price to £32 on Assos' own website.

Verdict

Great at what it does but it's hard to justify the outlay against the competition

If you're thinking of buying this product using a cashback deal why not use the road.cc Top Cashback page and get some top cashback while helping to support your favourite independent cycling website

road.cc test report

Make and model: Assos RoboCap

Size tested: I (53-58cm)

Tell us what the product is for

Assos says: "The ideal lightweight cap for cold days, the ASSOS roboCap is close fitting enough to be entirely unobtrusive when worn under a helmet, while it's warm and soft RXQ fabric is double layered around the ears and forehead for crucial cycling protection. This provides targeted insulation while the rest of the cap remains thinner to boost breathability and ensure a tailored fit. Sitting behind the ears, the cycling cap's elastic suspenders ensure a secure grip on your eyewear while reflective detailing adds visibility in low light conditions."

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

From Assos:

Three sizes available

Reflective detailing front and rear

Eyewear loops

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
8/10
Rate the product for performance:
 
9/10
Rate the product for durability:
 
8/10
Rate the product for fit:
 
8/10
Rate the product for sizing:
 
8/10

I should be bang on in the middle of size I and it fitted me spot on.

Rate the product for weight:
 
7/10
Rate the product for comfort:
 
8/10
Rate the product for value:
 
5/10

It's a fair wodge for a skullcap, though it's currently reduced to £32.

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

I just bunged it in the washing machine with everything else and it came out fine.

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

It's thin to fit under a helmet and keeps you warm: brief filled.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

Great for keeping your head and ears warm.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

Double the price of most of the competition...

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Not at full whack.

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

The Assos RoboCap really is a great performing piece of kit and with some great attention to detail. Its performnace doesn't really surpass others I've tried, though, at half the price, so that loses it a point.

Overall rating: 7/10

About the tester

Age: 38  Height: 180cm  Weight: 76kg

I usually ride: This month's test bike  My best bike is: Kinesis Aithein

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: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed

With 20 years of road cycling and over 150,000 miles in his legs it's safe to say Stu is happiest when on the bike whatever the weather. Since writing his first review for road.cc back in 2009 he has also had a career in engineering including 3D-CAD design and product development, so has a real passion for all of the latest technology coming through in the industry but is also a sucker for a classic steel frame, skinny tyres, rim brakes and a damn good paintjob.
His fascination with gravel bikes is getting out of control too!

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