Assos’ new handlebar bag is also a gravel jacket

When not being a jacket, the Mille GTC Löwenkralle Jacket C2 doubles up as a bar bag.

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Assos has a new bar bag. No, wait. Assos has a new thermal gravel jacket. But that’s not quite right either. Let’s try one last time: Assos has a new handlebar thermal gravel jacket bag.

Only days after 3D-printed bikes electron-beam melted my brain, Assos has gone and blown my mind entirely with a lightweight, windproof shell that doubles up as a handlebar bag.

On the face of it, the Mille GTC Löwenkralle Jacket C2 looks like any other jacket offering from Assos. It’s expensive, it’s only available in black, and judging from the photos, it’s as well-made as we have come to expect from the Swiss premium clothing brand. But, as Assos’ Instagram post on the new jacket demonstrates, the Löwenkralle C2 is not just another Assos jacket, but a rather innovative jacket that doubles up as an accessory-storing handlebar bag.

We haven’t yet seen or tried the new jacket, but judging from the blurb on it seems a well-thought-out and practical piece of kit. Assos’ ‘Pave’ rip-stop woven textile in the Löwenkralle is said to offer lightweight thermal insulation for cold-weather rides, and both windproofing and water repellency for when the weather turns. But its real party piece is its ability to fold away into a bar bag with zippered pockets for easy storage when not in use.

It’s not clear just how much accessory storing space the bag offers, or where exactly the chunky buckles sit when the bag converts to a jacket, but we certainly like the concept and the idea of more pocket space in our jerseys, while still having a jacket within reach.

The jacket is only available in black but does feature reflective stripes on the forearms, shoulders, rear elastic, and front panel when stowed as a bar bag for improved visibility in dark conditions.

Assos suggests the jacket works best when layered over a jersey in wet and windy conditions, for rides “beyond the tarmac”, while also being suitable for the daily commute.

At US$390 / £290 / €330, the Löwenkralle is far from cheap – but you have to admit, it is kind of cool.

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