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The Pactimo Summit Classic Bibs work exceptionally well on the bike. The soft, smooth fabric fits like a second skin, and as for the pad... I really can't fault it.
Pactimo says it uses a flat-sheen, double-knit fabric throughout the Summits, and it is bloody lovely. So comfortable against the skin that these shorts have become one of my favourite pairs to wear, for long or short rides.
It offers a reasonable amount of compression, for a close fit without being restrictive, and it moves well with your legs and body as you pedal. There's no bunching of material and even when you move from a seated position to a standing one, or vice versa, no adjustment is necessary.
The legs stay in place at all times thanks mostly to the stretch of the fabric but it's guaranteed by the little dashes of silicone added on the inside.
I like the idea of using the same fabric for the straps too; you are getting that compression to keep them in place but without any undue pressure.
The minimal seams at the top of the shoulder cause no bother, while the lightweight mesh panel between the straps aids breathability.
In fairness, the main material works well on that front too. I wore the shorts on some properly hot days and never felt overly sweaty.
At their heart is an Endurance Anatomic Super Air Chamois made by Elastic Interface, one of the main manufacturers whose pads you'll find in many brands of shorts and tights.
The design is original to Pactimo and it says it's developed as an ultra long distance pad, which I'm inclined to agree with. The padding is a bit thicker than some, and it is slightly firm which I found to be supportive, it didn't bunch and there were no hot-spots, even when remaining seated for a long time.
I used the Summits on both long road rides and adventures on the gravel, and they excelled at both.
The overall quality is very good, with just a few stray ends to the threads here and there, not something I'd really see as a concern because it isn't anything structural.
Sizing-wise there are five options from small through to 2XL, dictated by a rider's inseam. I've got the medium here and I'd say the sizing reflects that of similar brands like Rapha, Lusso, dhb and others. Basically, any brand that has typical UK sizing rather than more European style.
Full rrp for the Summits is £165, which puts them up there against some of the best shorts out there. That's not cheap, but they are £5 less than the Rapha Classic bib shorts while being superior in fit and long-ride comfort, and that's a big accolade as the Raphas are none too shabby on both of those fronts.
I'd say the Summits are on a par with the MAAP Team Bib Evo, one of the best pairs of shorts I've tested this year. They are £190, though.
If you are in the market for a quality pair of bib shorts that don't break the bank, though, bear in mind the Endura FS260 Pros, which I recently compared to both the Rapha and MAAP offerings. They are just £84.99. The softness of the Summit's fabric takes the edge, mind.
A near-faultless pair of bib shorts which, while high in price at full rrp, are still competitive against many of the big hitters in the clothing world.
Exquisite comfort from the fabric, backed up by an excellent pad
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Pactimo Summit Classic Bib Shorts
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for
Pactimo says, "The Summit Classic Bib has been designed for the discerning cyclist who appreciates the beauty in minimal elegance. With raw-edge cut uppers and leg openings, and a reduction in seams, the Summit Classic is true understated perfection. The entire bib, uppers and lower, is constructed with a single, flat-sheen, double-knit fabric that is visually appealing and offers an even compression for unparalleled comfort. The Endurance Anatomic Super Air chamois, designed in concert with our team and the experts at Elastic Interface®, is the one-of-a-kind 12-hour pad that will keep you comfortable for extreme distances and varied terrain. A great choice for those who want an outstanding long-distance bib with a simple, luxurious style."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Flat-sheen, double-knit fabric throughout
Elastic Interface® Endurance Anatomic Super Air chamois
Raw-edge cut straps and upper
Raw-edge cut leg openings
Internal, soft, silicone leg grippers
Reflective hits for added safety in low-light conditions
S = 24.5 cm
M = 25 cm
L = 25.5 cm
XL = 26 cm
2XL = 26.5 cm
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
No issues at all, following the manufacturer's instructions.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Very comfortable shorts ideal for both long and short rides.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The fabrics used are some of the softest I've worn.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
A few scruffy ends here and there, but nothing much to write home about.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
They ever so slightly undercut some of the top-end quality bib shorts that I have also tested, like those from Rapha and MAAP. There are some cheaper models out there which compete well on price, though, like the Enduras mentioned in the review.
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're excellent – an absolutely quality pair of bib shorts, from the fabric through to the pad.
About the tester
I usually ride: This month's test bike My best bike is: B'Twin Ultra CF draped in the latest bling test components
I've been riding for: Over 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!