If you are regular traveller with your bike, transporting it in the back of the car or van, then the Evoc Padded Bike Rug will be a welcome addition to your kit. It'll keep the mud and grime off your interior while keeping your bike's paintwork out of harm's way from when your mates' rides are stacked on top.
- Pros: Quick and simple to fit, robust, versatile
- Cons: There are cheaper solutions out there
Yes, you can use an old duvet, sheet or blanket to keep your bike covered and protected on the way to a sportive or race, but the Padded Rug is a simple, professional looking solution and it doesn't stop being useful once you've removed it from your bike.
Fitting is easy regardless of the bike you are using, as it is designed for everything from a time trial bike through to a full on downhill mountain bike.
You just drop it over the top tube – the front is marked so you get it the right way round – and wrap the long Velcro straps around the front and rear of the frame and the other two over the wheels.
As well as the frame being covered, most of the components are too, including the chainset, cassette and brakes – whether disc or rim – and the mechs.
The outer material is tough wearing, similar to the stuff used in various rucksacks and bags in Evoc's range, and the stitching all round and on the Velcro straps is very robust and well carried out.
Inside you get a wipe-clean silver lining which is very good at resisting water, oil and mud. The whole thing is only about 5mm thick but it does seem to offer a lot of protection from the surroundings and, to a degree, the weather.
With a lot of events like sportives and road or cross races starting early in the morning, that field you've been sent into for the car park is likely to be damp from rain or overnight dew and this is where the Bike Rug shows its versatility. Laid out flat with the inner facing upright, it makes the perfect place to get your bike and yourself set up and ready to go. It covers a fair old area which means you can lay your tools out and it gives you somewhere to sit to change into your cycling shoes.
It costs £59.99, which initially struck me as a little steep, but after living with it for a good six weeks I can now see that its ease of use, quality and versatility are really worth the money.
I often use the car to start test rides at various places, and there are the odd events I've had to drive to, and the Evoc just makes getting the bike in and out of the car easy.
It's especially useful after yet another wet and muddy gravel ride, where I don't have to wipe the bike down before chucking it in the boot... Just wrap the rug around the dirty bike and when you get home give both it and the bike a good blast with the hose, ready for the next adventure.
There are a few other solutions out there, though we haven't tested many of them. One we have, back in 2011, is the Bike Parka Urbn. It's not quite the same, but at £39.95 is a lot more affordable, or you could go for something like the B'Twin 1-Bike Transport Cover. That's more of a standard bike travel solution, being a large bag that requires you to remove the bike's wheels and pedals first, but at £49.99 for a complete bag it does look pretty cheap compared to the Evoc.
Great travel solution for those with dirty bikes or for protecting your paintwork
road.cc test report
Make and model: Evoc Padded Bike Rug
Size tested: 15cm x 75cm x 2cm
Tell us what the product is for
Evoc says, "The EVOC PADDED BIKE RUG is a padded transport protection mat and spacer for all bike types. Perfect bike frame protection - also for wheels and other components."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
900 g, 150 x 75 x 2 cm
Fits: road bike, triathlon bike, XC-, FR-, downhill, 29' bikes
Dirt protection (inside)
P600 D PU COATED
A very durable fabric for high-abrasion areas, it is also tear-resistant and lightweight while absorbing almost no moisture. Combining these characteristics, it's the perfect material for high-stress pockets or backpack base constructions.
Extremely lightweight, tear-resistant and highly water-repellent fabric which is used as protective lining material.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Quick and simple to fit and use.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Offers a bit of protection to the bike and whatever you're travelling in.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
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
The Padded Bike Rug is a neat solution if you travel with your bike a lot, especially in the back of a car or van. There are cheaper ideas out there but its robustness, ease of fitment and other uses all stack up to justify the price.
About the tester
I usually ride: This month's test bike My best bike is:
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
Stu knocked out his first road.cc review back in 2009 and since then he's chucked the best part of seventy test bikes around the West Country, a couple of them quite literally! With three alloy and two steel bikes in his fleet he's definitely a metal man (that'll be the engineering background) but is slowly warming to that modern carbon fibre stuff along with fat tyres & disc brakes.
It's not all nostalgia though, after spending the last few years in product design Stu keeps banging on about how 3D printing is going to be the next big thing and he's a sucker for a beautiful paint job too.