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The MAAP Thermal Base Layer LS Tee is warm, very comfortable and wicks really well. It's on the slightly small and short-bodied side, so best suited to bib short use and slimmer riders, but it feels rugged and built to last – and that offsets the highish price a little.
Despite the love-it-or-hate-it nature of its wild colours, there's not actually that much to say about this baselayer – except that it's very good.
Oh go on then, I'll say some other stuff. The Polartec Power Grid fabric is very comfortable against the skin, and the impressively tough-looking overlocked seams are undetectable once it's on.
It's warm but very good at managing both excessive heat and sweat, and I found it stays comfortable even at the upper end of its range (about 12°C when paired with a windproof softshell, for me).
MAAP describes the material as mid-weight, and despite the thickish feel it stretches very easily. That's good, as the sizing is on the smaller side of accurate. It's also cut relatively short in the body, which I found just fine under bibs but less suitable with regular shorts.
Basically, when I put this on it kept me warm but not too warm when working hard, comfortable even when I was sweaty, and unrestricted in my movements. It's even happy to do multiple rides without the stink demanding to see a washing machine, and while I thought it smelt a bit odd and chemically from new, that disappeared after the first wash.
At £70 this is at the more expensive end of things. The Specialized Seamless LS baselayer is a good chunk less at £55, for instance, though it's also a special kind of 'seamless' that has seams... only the body is actually continuous. Still, none of the seams on either the Specialized or the MAAP cause issues anyway.
Meanwhile, the dhb Aeron Polartec LS baselayer uses very similar fabric to the MAAP and was £40 when we reviewed it last year, and even though it's now £50 that's still a fair bit cheaper.
MAAP has a certain cachet (and those stylish/lunatic [delete as applicable] looks) of course, and is closer in price to other fashionable brands. The Megmeister Drynamo Winter Long Sleeve Baselayer is a much closer £64.95, for instance, while the Santini Grido Thermal Unisex Long Sleeve Base Layer is far more at £120.
For winter training – when you're very likely to be wearing bibs anyway – this is great. It's warm but comfortable and copes very well with hard efforts. If you like the looks (personally I do) it's a great choice that promises multiple winters of impressive performance.
Warm, breathable, comfortable and (probably) stylish – a great base that should last
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road.cc test report
Make and model: MAAP Thermal Base Layer LS Tee
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for
MAAP says: "The Thermal Base Layer Long Sleeve combines highly breathable, quick dry, moisture-wicking, Polartec Power Grid fabrics for versatile warmth through advanced thermoregulation. High-stretch bi-component knit improves compressibility, enhances fabric performance, and contoured side panels move with your body for maximum range of motion."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
130 g - 4.59 oz
MAIN FABRIC CONTENT
91% Polyester, 9% Elastane
MAIN FABRIC WEIGHT
125g/m2 - Mid Weight
Feels particularly strongly constructed.
Slim and comfortable, though quite short in the body.
Ever so slightly on the small side.
Good for what it is.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
No issues, and copes well with multiple uses between washes too.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Very well – it's warm and comfortable.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Crazy colours and great comfort.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
A bit short in the body if you aren't wearing bibs.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
It's towards the upper end of the range for its style and fabric.
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
It's simply very good, and that's an 8 in our book.
About the tester
I usually ride: Vitus Zenium SL VR Disc My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: A few times a week I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: general fitness riding, mtb,