Billed as more of a casual riding short, Pearl Izumi’s updated-for-2013 Rev short is a stealthy success. The somewhat slim fit is appropriate for riders over the age of 30, the details are well thought out, and the price is reasonable. Hit the jump for all of the details on this understated trail/commuter short!
While most baggies have something that bugs me while riding, Pearl Izumi have succeeded in building a short that never calls attention to itself while on the bike. The integrated elastic belt, which runs from hip to hip, is one of the best I’ve used: easily adjustable without bunching or odd seams to cause issues under a pack. The standard snap-and-zip front closure is plenty easy to get in to and out of. While the single zippered side pocket seems a bit stingy pre- and post-ride, it is big enough to hold a phone and wallet in the mini mart.
The features that gain the Revs the most attention at the trailhead are the large Direct Vent mesh panels. Not remotely opaque, the vents provide a clear and odd view of the transition between the bottom of the liner and the bare thigh. It’s unusual enough to attract glances in settings where baggies would otherwise go unnoticed- but I’ll be darned if those vents don’t provide lots of nice, cool airflow while riding and do a good job at keeping the shorts from ballooning on fast fire road descents.
Bearing in mind the Revs’ $100 retail price, it would be unreasonable to expect anything pinched from a pro-level bib. Under my bony posterior, Pearl Izumi’s 3D Tour Chamois is more of a 2-hour than a 6-hour pad, which is just about right at this price point, but your mileage may vary. For simplicity’s sake, the liners are sewn in place, so pairing the outers with anything else will require commitment (and scissors).
For casual rides, the Revs are a solid choice. The small samples fit my 30in waist comfortably and the 13in inseam is just about right for balancing coverage with pedaling comfort. Though the pad isn’t up to all-day rides, the simple design and effective ventilation make for the best trail shorts I’ve tried at the price.