The F-Lite Ultralight and Megalight 200 are two the latest, and in the case of the Ultralight, lightest, offerings from the German brand making strong headway into the UK market. With things still a little chilly out there TriGear kitted up. First to the F-Lite Ultralight…
The F-Lite Ultralight uses the brand’s own F-liteTEX knitting technology – a ‘tubular knit’ system, which means there are no side seams to rub, chafe or distort the figure-hugging shape. It’s flat-hemmed at the bottom and the seams that do remain – those attaching the short-sleeved arms – are also flat-locked, laying more or less flush with the material and presenting no real risk of irritation even when things warm up on the run (or ride.)
When it comes to the claim of being the lightest of its kind in the world, it’s hard to disagree – the F-Lite Ultralight weighs only 70 grams/m² – giving rise to the garments full name of F-Lite Ultralight 70 GP Base Layer – so a medium comes in at a whisper 75g. The lack of weight, to put it mildly, combined with the seamless/flat-seam construction, makes for an exceptionally comfortable experience.
Thermal properties impressed too, living up to the ideal of keeping us warm on colder training sessions, but effectively keeping things cool when temperatures did climb. The Ultralight achieves this unconventionally: constructed of otherwise fairly industry standard polyamide, polypropylene and elastane, this base layer adds a carbon antistatic finish, which prevents the material sticking to the skin, ensuring a layer of air is permanently on hand to regulate heat.
Turning to the Megalight 200 – TriGear was testing the more substantial, long-sleeved option, so there’s an inevitable weight gain but at just 168g (men’s medium) it still felt impressively light and comfortable. Again this is a really figure-hugging base layer but the tubular knit and exceptionally soft lining helps the top move in motion with the run and delivered outstanding thermal control on a number of bitter night runs.
Both wicking and breathability were exactly as we would expect from F-Lite; so far their range has greatly impressed with consistency in performance, construction and functionality. We certainly wouldn’t want to choose between the Ultralight and Megalight, but then perhaps there’s room for both in the kit bag with the Megalight taking you through the winter for day-to-day training and the Ultralight coming into its own for races and when a more stripped-back approach is required.
The F-Lite Ultralight Base Layer and short-sleeved Megalight 200 both retail at £34.99, the long-sleeved Megalight 200 retails at £43.99. Further details and online purchase at smgeurope.com