This article originally published on BikeRadar
Castelli has adapted its novel SanRemo one-piece top-and-bottom concept for wintertime use to produce the SanRemo Thermosuit.
The overall fit is fantastic. It's admirably warm, and the all-in-one design is undeniably convenient, but it's not the most versatile outfit – and it's anything but cheap.
The SanRemo Thermosuit combines two of Castelli's top winter garments: the Sorpasso tights and Trasparente jacket. In this case, however, Castelli has essentially omitted the bib straps from the tights and the lower hem from the jacket and stitched everything together into a sort of high-tech, cycling-specific onesie.
Although the idea may seem radical for winter cycling clothing, it yields several real-world benefits that both of our testers noticed on the road.
For one, it's impressively warm. While Castelli officially only rates the SanRemo Thermosuit down to 5°C (41°F), we still found it comfortable closer to the freezing mark, even with just a light long-sleeved base layer underneath, at least when going reasonably hard. With virtually no gaps between the top and bottom, there's no danger of drafts, either.
Credit here goes to the fully fleece-lined interior, additional Gore Windstopper armoring across the front of the body and sleeves, and the SanRemo Thermosuit's cozy, high-cut collar. Excellent breathability and the full-length front zipper extended our real-world comfort range closer to spring-like 13°C (55°F) temperatures too.
We also enjoyed an unusually next-to-nothing feel for something so warm with relatively even compression throughout the garment. Racers who regularly don skinsuits will feel right at home but riders who are more accustomed to conventional separate tops and bottoms – especially non-bib shorts and tights – might find themselves checking the mirror once or twice before heading out the door to make sure they haven't forgotten something.
Winter tights with built-in chamois are sometimes hit or miss but it's all good in this case. Castelli outfits the SanRemo Thermosuit with its Progetto X2 Air pad – the same as in its top-end bib shorts – and it's certainly a comfortable place to spend your day. In fact, we completely forgot about it on one four-hour ride, which is about as much as you could ask for from a chamois.
Finally, the one-piece layout is undeniably convenient. Instead of having to grab several different garments to wear over your base layer, here you only have to reach for one. Not everyone will get on with the bright fluorescent yellow accents, but it's certainly hard to miss in terms of road safety (that is, assuming you ride on the right side of the road). Castelli offers a more subdued black, white and red option too.
Unfortunately, that all-in-one fit might not work for everyone. One of our testers (wearing a size large) noted a couple of tight spots around the lower torso where the jersey and tights are connected while another (wearing a size medium) felt that that area could actually be a little snugger. Both, however, felt that Castelli could tighten up the pattern around the hindquarters.
We also noticed some slight discrepancies in terms of how uniformly warm the SanRemo Thermosuit felt. While the upper torso, sleeves, knees, and lower legs generally always seemed well insulated from winter cold, we occasionally found ourselves wanting more protection around the lower torso and upper thighs.
Overall, we find the Castelli SanRemo Thermosuit to be a great single-piece solution for winter riding with outstanding comfort, excellent warmth, and great breathability. Make sure the all-in-one, skinsuit-like fit works for you though, and keep in mind that you won't be able to shed the jacket if your ride will include a significant increase in temperature.
Sizes available: S, M, L, XL, XXL, XXXL
Highs: Convenient all-in-one design; skinsuit-like fit; draft-free; excellent chamois
Lows: Could be warmer in a couple of spots; all-or-nothing sizing
BikeRadar verdict: 4 stars