Fall and winter base layers can be a bit tricky, as you’re often choosing between being warm enough when you start your ride (and overheating later) and being cold at points but never overheating. We’ve had the Assos earlyWinterInteractive for three years now, and use it in heavy rotation when the mercury drops.
Although the thick wicking material of the garment feels great against the skin and the fit is good as you ride, perhaps the best feature of the base layer is the simplest – the zipper, which allows you to reach up and regulate your temperature during a ride.
The tall collar protrudes slightly over most jerseys, and is cut trimly enough to be worn under race-fit jerseys. Two types of polyester fabric are used: a thicker material on most of the body, and a thinner, stretchier one under the arms. The latter is also used in a double layer at the neck.
Sweat-wicking performance is good. Silver is woven in for its antibacterial properties, and while the top won’t smell like roses at the end of a long ride, odor management is evident.
Assos rates the piece with a pretty narrow temperature window of 6-12ºC (43-54ºF) but obviously your comfort range depends on what other layers you wear. In our experience, the earlyWinterInteractive works well on fall days with a short sleeve jersey, and on full winter days with a long sleeve top and/or jacket.
The earlyWinterInteractive comes in six sizes, ranging from a 96cm chest to a 118cm option. As with all Assos clothing, the price is remarkably high.