Bontrager RXL Bib Shorts Review

Bontrager RXL Bib Shorts Review

Lots of bib shorts make all kinds of fantastic claims while others quietly perform in the saddle for hours on end. The Bontrager RXL Bib Shorts are quiet performers that have a lot to offer.

Bontrager RXL Bib Shorts Features:

  • InForm RXL Chamois: Multi-density, 3D seamless, with 4-way stretch and anti-microbial top sheet
  • Combination of Profila Power fabric and Profila Cool mesh bib back
  • Lightweight, low-profile, no-sew bib straps with bonded finish offer great support and comfort
  • Clean cut compression leg gripper
  • Reflective elements enhance visibility for maximum safety anytime
  • 9.5″ (24cm) inseam
  • Fitted – Streamlined fit for all-around cycling performance
  • Available in all black (tested) or black/white
  • MSRP: $159

Bontrager RXL Bib Shorts Review

RXL Bib Shorts Deliver Stealth Performance

The all-black look gives the RXL Bib Shorts some serious flexibility. They can go well with nearly any jersey combination, but I most often wore them with the matching black RXL Jersey for a super-stealth look. In spite of the all-black color scheme, the Profila Power and Cool fabrics do a great job of maintaining comfort in the heat of summer.

One of the most outstanding features of the RXL Bibs are the no-seam straps. These ultralight and stretchy wonders immediately contour to your torso with chaff-free comfort — no matter how hard your effort is. I can’t say enough about the comfort of these straps… they stretch and just plain fit.

Jason Testing the Cannondale Synapse Hi-Mod

The shorts offer good compression (sizing down to the Medium might improve compression) and have a nice length to them. The clean cut compression leg grippers are wide and keep everything put without grabbing your skin. Once settled in place, they stay put really well.

Bontrager knows how to make a great chamois and the InForm RXL chamois is excellent for being relatively low-profile. It has worked well with a variety of saddles (Bontrager Serano, Specialized Chicane Pro, Ergon SR3, Specialized S-Works Romin and others). The only thing I’ve noticed is that the fabric covering the chamois does tend to grab the saddle when returning to the saddle after sprinting.

Note: I’m 5’11”, 170 lbs. and I wore the size large for testing. Perhaps a medium could provide a more race-like fit, but these were plenty snug.

The Good

  • Love the wide leg cuffs
  • Fabric breathes well
  • The bib straps are thin and comfortable — chaff-free
  • Nice, low-profile chamois
  • Flatlock stitching in high-chaff areas

The Bad

  • Fabric separates from the chamois and catches on saddle nose

The Bottom Line

The RXL Bib Shorts are great overall — with an excellent chamois and awesome, minimalist straps that are immediately comfortable. For $159, these are also a pretty good price.

Buy Now: Visit Bontrager.com or Your Local Trek Dealer

Written By

A Seattle native, Jason developed a love for the outdoors and a thing for mountains. That infatuation continues as he founded this site in 1999 --sharing his love of road biking, mountain biking, trail running and skiing. That passion is channeled into every article or gear review he writes. Utah's Wasatch Mountains are his playground. Follow Jason Mitchell on Google+.