In terms of proper kits for shoulder season, things can get tricky. Many times I over-analyze the variety of kit based on the temperature and at some point during the ride, I’ve chosen wrong. Realizing just what conditions your kit is made for is key and the Mavic Cosmic Elite Bib Knickers are made for cool, dry weather.
Mavic Cosmic Elite Bib Knickers Features:
- Unlined, three-fabric blend
- Mesh bib uppers
- Exo grip leg grippers
- Ergo 3D Chamois
- Subtle reflective elements
- MSRP: $149.95
In general, I’m a huge fan of bib knickers. The primary reason is because they can span a wide variety of temperatures without having to go full-on winter tights. In fact, my Castelli NanoFlex bib knickers are my all-time favorite bibs simply because I can wear them in temperatures from 60 down to 35 degrees. Now, the Mavic Cosmic Elite Bib Knickers don’t have quite that type of versatility, but they do comfortably span from 50-70 degrees (a little lower for mountain biking)
The Cosmic Elite’s are unbacked, but the fabric is certainly thicker and more durable than your typical pair of summer bib shorts. In fact, the material has endured a myriad of run-ins with the local sagebrush without so much as a scratch (can’t say the same for my legs).
Overall construction quality is good with flatlock seams throughout (except one small 4″ section on the backside). Those seams offer comfort next-to-skin and on long rides because the seams don’t dig into your legs. The mesh uppers are stretchy, comfortable and breathable. And, I haven’t had any chaffing with them thus far — with and without a base layer underneath.
Length is right where you’d expect (mid-calf), but I’ll say that these do fit a little looser than expected. At 5’10” and 170 lbs, I think I could have gone with the Medium for more compression and a race-like fit. As it was, the material snagged the saddle and the crotch area sort of got a little unsupportive. Keep that in mind if you’re shopping for these and size accordingly.
The Ergo 3D Elite chamois is a traditional design, but it does offer excellent comfort. It is a touch large (perhaps due to the aforementioned sizing comments above), but it really is comfortable in the saddle. Ortholite treatment will ensure long-lasting anti-microbial benefits.
I’ve used these for both mountain and road biking. On the road, the single yellow leg band is a subtle nod to visibility and the Mavic brand. Additionally, there are two small reflective tabs on the back of the calves. I’d like to see a little more reflectivity, but at least it’s something.
- Knicker length is spot-on
- Chamois is really comfortable
- Uppers wear well and are chaff-free
- Affordable price point
- Have taken some abuse on the MTB side
- A little oversize — I should have sized down to Medium
- Chamois is large (but comfortable, as mentioned)
- I’d like to see a bit more high-vis/reflective elements
The Bottom Line: Mavic Cosmic Elite Knickers
Bib knickers are my personal favorite since they are so versatile. The Mavic Cosmic Elite’s are unlined, so don’t expect cold-weather performance. The sweet spot here is in the 50’s with the ability to dip into the upper-40’s or 60’s, as needed. Leg cuffs stay in place and the overall package is quite comfortable with a good chamois.
Buy Now: Available at CompetitiveCyclist.com