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Assos Equipe RS Schtradivari Bib Shorts S11 Long



Obvious quality and excellent comfort – only the auto-satirical packaging is misjudged
Excellent construction
Pad can move separately to shorts
Nice low front for when the hedgerow beckons
Truly ludicrous packaging
Contact: Recommends

This product has been selected to feature in recommends. That means it's not just scored well, but we think it stands out as special. Go to recommends

At every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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The Assos Equipe RS Schtradivari Bib Shorts S11 certainly talk a good game – even if they're hard to say – and for the most part they live up to it. The semi-mobile chamois does an excellent job of combating chafing, and faults are hard to find anywhere beyond the price tag.

So what do you get for your £215? The initial answer is an almost comical volume of packaging, within which you'll eventually find a pair of bibshorts. These weigh only 178g, so I was somewhat taken aback to take delivery of a 1.6kg package.

You start with a fancy black box with two folding segments of lid, inside which you find an inch of foam padding cradling a second box and also a thick, phone-sized slab of perspex informing you that "The world's most advanced race shorts to date are now in your hands." They're not, though. Not yet.

Upon sliding that second box out of its sleeve and lifting its lid, you're greeted with a nest of tissue paper; delve inside and finally you get to some shorts, folded beneath an inscription which reads: "All consumption creates waste. To protect Earth's resources, we must end the age of waste. Theoretically, the most effective way to protect our world is to not consume anything.

"Since this is impratical [sic], we believe that consuming less, but better, is the way to go. This means manufacturers must produce less, but of better quality, and their products must fulfill a purpose other than making money. Creating something that lasts reduces repeat sales, but it also reduces the need formore [sic] resources. Assos is such a product.

"Less consumption. Less waste. Less is more."

A lecture about waste written on 1.4kg of waste? Assosstonishing.


Speaking of padding, we may as well start with the centrepiece: the chamois. This comprises multiple layers, each of which is coated in idiosyncratic tech jargon.

2024 Assos Equipe RS Schtradivari Bib Shorts S11 Long - chamois.jpg

The 'Mineral Tec Surface' is smooth to reduce friction and irritation. After long hours in the saddle, I'd say it does the job. It's enhanced with 'GoldenGate 2.0' for "three-dimensional mobility in this sensitive area." In practical terms, the pad is only attached either end, and otherwise free to slip over the outer fabric to some degree.

It's a hard thing to gauge while you're actually in the saddle, but I did get a sense that – despite my various movements – there was no feeling that the outer and inner layers were pulling each other out of whack.

These elements are supplemented by 'WhirlKrater', which are ASSOS's ventilation holes inside the sitbone part of the pad, and 'KraterCooler', which are holes doing much the same job on the surface of the front of the pad.

2024 Assos Equipe RS Schtradivari Bib Shorts S11 Long - back detail.jpg

Between these you get a slice of '3D waffle' (make your own joke there), which is a three-layer perforated foam. Then at the very bottom sits the 'Shock-Absorb Damping System Mono 9' – a single 9mm layer of compressive foam.

Jargon aside, you know what? When it comes to what matters – comfort – it's great. To be honest, I suspect that comes more from the way it's put together – the fit, stitching and articulation – rather than because of any magical padding. The pad itself feels springy rather than firm, and I suspect some riders may feel it lacks density. That's probably more of a personal preference thing, but it's worth mentioning when we're talking about a £215 outlay.

Beyond that, the main fabric is soft and smooth and you get the usual silicone grippers around the leg. The grippers run in a band of circles around the rear and sides of your thigh, but not on top where they're apparently vulnerable to sun damage. I can't say I've ever noticed this problem, but the back-and-sides system works perfectly well.

2024 Assos Equipe RS Schtradivari Bib Shorts S11 Long - gripper.jpg

Sizing and fit

Assos has a tool on its website that will recommend a size based on your height, weight and age. "Age has an impact on how your weight is distributed," is the explanation for the last metric. While some may take issue with the implied assumptions, it recommended a large for me, and it fitted very well.

If I were to really nitpick, I'd say the straps are relatively taut, but not to the extent I felt the sizing was out. The mesh is relatively soft and light and decently stretchy.

2024 Assos Equipe RS Schtradivari Bib Shorts S11 Long - straps back 1.jpg


Cyclists happy to pay north of 200 notes for a pair of shorts aren't short of options.

In recent times, we've rated the Velocio Men's Luxe Bib Shorts (£217) highly and the Rapha Men's Pro Team Powerweave Bib Shorts too – although the latter are a good whack more expensive again at £300.

However, you can get exceptional shorts for less: the Kostüme Men's Bib Shorts got top marks in our review and cost £35 less at £180, for example, while the Albion ABR1 Bib Shorts earned themselves a ' Recommends' and cost £145.


With the obvious proviso that we're all built differently (there's always a chance shorts just won't work for your shape), the catchily-named Schtradivari shorts (Schorts?) are among the best you'll find. They're some of the best I've ever worn. Frankly though, the 'Less Waste' sermon would work better printed on less wasteful packaging.


Obvious quality and excellent comfort – only the auto-satirical packaging is misjudged test report

Make and model: Assos Equipe RS Schtradivari Bib Shorts S11 Long

Size tested: Large

Tell us what the product is for

Assos assossures us that: "The next generation of our flagship WorldTour bib shorts, re-engineered with lower weight, increased cooling breathability, and more comfortable, body-wrapping compression from waist to raw-cut leg openings. Available here in a longer leg length, +3cm compared to the standard length."

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

"The critical updates to the new EQUIPE RS shorts are a new textile and a new insert. The new textile, Type.911, allowed us to completely reengineer the cut, reducing the seam count and wrinkles while micro-adjusting fit across the legs and waist. It also let us eliminate the rollBar bib strap design, because Type.911 is more elastic and more compressive than the Type.441 used on the previous generation."

"80% Polyamide 20% Elastane."

Rate the product for quality of construction:

Not my favourite straps, but really top rate otherwise.

Rate the product for performance:
Rate the product for durability:
Rate the product for fit:

I'd have liked just a little more strap.

Rate the product for sizing:
Rate the product for weight:
Rate the product for comfort:
Rate the product for value:

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

Absolutely fine in the everyday wash throughout the testing period.

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

Feels great on shorter rides, and no niggling flaws on a six-hour ride either.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

The feel and fit.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

The ludicrous volume of packaging.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on

These very much sit at the premium end of the market, though they're middling for that sector rather than right at the very top.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? On sale, yes!

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Only the wealthier ones

Use this box to explain your overall score

This is a truly excellent pair of bib shorts, and ridiculous packaging aside – they're fabric, they could ship in a bag! – there's very little to criticise.

Overall rating: 9/10

About the tester

Age: 44  Height: 185  Weight: 78

I usually ride: Giant Defy Advanced Pro 3  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, E-bike/utility

Alex has written for more cricket publications than the rest of the team combined. Despite the apparent evidence of this picture, he doesn't especially like cake.

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