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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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Comfortable, with a superb chamois, and look great, although all this quality comes at a price
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: 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?
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
Very well made, with excellent fabric choice combined with strong stitching.
Comfortable, breathable, and with noticeable compression.
The material feels robust and likely to last, potentially even in a crash.
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.
The medium fitted as expected.
Very impressive whether I was riding on rough roads, dirt tracks, or smooth tarmac over several hours.
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.
About the tester
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 is the host of the road.cc podcast and has been writing for road.cc since 2014. He has reviewed everything from a saddle with a shark fin through to a set of glasses with a HUD and everything in between.
Although, ironically, spending more time writing and talking about cycling than on the bike nowadays, he still manages to do a couple of decent rides every week on his ever changing number of bikes.