Le Col makes some of the best cycling apparel quite a lot of money can buy, while McLaren is noted for its pursuit of speed and technical excellence. That's mainly in the field of cars but the brand has dipped a number of toes into cycling over the years. It's collaborated with road bike speed-merchants Specialized, but also helped out Brompton with its electric fold-up bike.
Now Le Col and McLaren have teamed up for Project Aero. They've produce some decidedly snazzy road bike wear, built entirely for speed. They are even claiming to have designed the world's fastest speed suit or, as they put it, one with a 'proven advantage over the world’s leading aero suits'. There are also jerseys and socks, with a skin suit coming soon.
As well as offering speed advantages over standard kit, the Le Col X Mclaren Project Aero apparel also looks great, so long as you have the kind of frame that supports it. Sinuous, technical, Italian fabrics and stylish graphics mean you'll really cut a dash, so long as your body fat percentage is below about 12. Le Col describes it as an 'ultra compressive fit' and they are not kidding.
Le Col X McLaren Project Aero: price and availability
You can shop the Mclaren collection at Le Col now. Pricing is from £170/AU$325 for jerseys and £350/AU$665 for suits – men's and women's sizes are available for the jerseys, with the women's speed suit arriving in July.
If that seems a bit much, you can pick up some socks for a mere £35/AU$67.
Le Col also offers free shipping within the UK for orders over £50 and to Australia for orders over AU$90.
Le Col X McLaren Project Aero: engineered for speed
Le Col apparel is designed in London and made in Italy. Founded by GB cyclist Yanto Barker, the brand has 'one of the widest testing and development networks in cycling,' and they certainly seem to have pulled out all the stops for Project Aero.
Le Col & McLaren’s brand new collection includes the wind-tunnel-beating Speedsuit, which has 'tested faster than current leading World Tour speedsuits and skinsuits', jerseys and socks. A skin suit will follow shortly. There are also jerseys and socks to round out the collection. You couldn't have a cycling collection without socks.
The tailors at Le Col and aerodynamicists at McLaren have gone all out to reduce drag and win races with Project Aero. 'Scientifically proven as a step-change in aero cycling apparel, this collection speaks for itself in the race of truth,' they cry.
McLaren aero expert Matt Williams adds, “This collection has been tested against the best kit issued to the fastest TT riders at the World Tour. The results we’ve seen in the wind tunnel map perfectly with what we’ve seen on the road & on the track - in race conditions. This kit’s aero engineering surpasses everything else out there.”
Le Col founder Yanto Barker says, “Project Aero represents Le Col’s never-ending pursuit of speed and performance. We have spent hours in the windtunnel with the aerodynamic experts and engineers from the McLaren team to develop this kit and it’s been incredible to get their insight into the finer details of drag and airflow."
The flagship product is the Le Col X McLaren Project Aero Speedsuit.
Pay attention now: the Speedsuit has tested '32 seconds faster than current World Tour leading speedsuits over 40km at 300watts, and even offers gains of 6watts at 35kph on TT specific skinsuits.' That should mean it'll help you ride faster, too.
Made using Elite Italian Tripping fabrics, it's packed with aerodynamic aids including dimples and dual densities, as well as being extremely closely mapped to your body.
If that isn't quite aero enough for you, a Le Col x McLaren Project Aero Long Sleeve Skinsuit is also 'coming soon'.
Le Col x McLaren Project Aero also includes short and long sleeved Jerseys, of course.
Again, the brands claim they are 'the highest performing aero jersey out there.' They're wind tunnel tested, with findings there translated to your everyday ride
Strategically placed, air tripping front panels and high-speed lycra 'disrupt airflow and smooth the path of air past leading-edge surfaces, enhancing efficiency on the bike.'
• T3's guide to the best cycling jerseys
Last but not least there's the Le Col x McLaren Project Aero Socks.
These use the same tripping fabric as the jerseys and suits, over a compressive silicone gripped upper. While they will probably not make you ride noticeably faster, they do look very good, and are sure to be comfortable.
Le Col X McLaren Project Aero: what's in the collection?
All info is direct from Le Col.
Le Col x McLaren Project Aero Speedsuit (SS) - £375.00/AU$665.00
MATERIAL: Main body: 74% polyester 26% elastane, Upper sleeve 86% Polyester 14% Elastane
Low profile race radio pocket. Two low profile aero pockets.
Elite Italian tripping fabrics on leading edge.
Mapped use of disruptive, layered fabrics manipulate three dimensional flow topology and reduce surface friction.
Front covered zip for reduced drag
Extremely tight and aggressive fit.
Lightweight and delicate materials.
Sublimated & debossed logos to maintain smooth aero profile.
McLaren x Le Col banding at the sleeve cuffs.
Le Col x McLaren Project Aero Chamois - cut and located for aggressive positions.
Raw cut edge leg cuff with internal silicone strip for secure fit
Le Col x McLaren Project Aero Short Sleeve Jersey - £170.00/AU$325.00
MATERIAL: 80% nylon 20% elastane front material, 90% polyester 10% elastane rear & side panels.
Raw cut edge leg cuff with internal silicone strip for secure fit.
Air tripping High Speed Lycra fabric on front and sleeves.
Folded elastic banded cuffs for low profile aero finish. Debossed and double sublimated logos and design for aero finish. Low profile Race Radio pocket. 3 low profile rear pockets with zip pocket. Le Col x McLaren hemline gripper for secure fit.. Laser cut rubberized McLaren Tab and two rear reflective tabs for visibility.
Le Col x McLaren Project Aero Long Sleeve Jersey – £195.00/AU$370.00
MATERIAL: 80% nylon 20% elastane.
All other design elements are the same as the short sleeve jersey.
Le Col x McLaren Project Aero Socks – £35.00/AU$67.00
Upper material - 82% polyester/ 18% elastane. Lower material - 100% Polyamide.
Terry padded toe and base with reinforced toe box.
Hex Construction base for improved breathability. Aero Channelled Speed fabrics over upper. Pre-applied bonded gripper for secure sock height. Flatlock seam for strength and comfort over the rear. Knitted & sublimated Le Col x McLaren Branding. Direct applied silicone on internal cuff.