We rated the original Fassa Separator highly when we tested it last year, as it’s a great way to protect your bike while transporting it in a car or van. Our only real issue with it was it only protects one side of your bike, so you needed more than one if you’re going to be transporting three or more bikes.
Well, Fassa has shown that it is a company that listens and a few months ago brought out the new Defender, and it’s like the Separator on steroids. Two large flaps wrap around a bike to protect it from all angles. Both sides Velcro together to create a barrier that not only prevents damage, but also helps keep mud and detritus from spreading all over the car.
With one Defender you can effectively keep three bikes from harm, simply by fitting it to the middle one. Due to its size and weight it can be a bit tricky to fi t the first few times. As soon as you try moving one flap it tends to flop back and grab the Velcro on the other side almost at lightning speed. But by folding one side back onto itself it easily pops over the top tube and happily unfolds on the other side.
Two long Velcro straps can then be wrapped over to hold it in place. Fassa makes the Defender out of thick waterproof woven and UV-coated 100 per cent polyethylene, wrapped over a closed cell inner fabric. It easily wipes clean and also makes a handy, large changing mat for when you fancy stripping off in a random car park.
Due to its size and lack of any handles, the first edition was quite tricky to lift into the back of a car while wrapped around a bike. After feeding this back to Fassa, it is fitting extra carrying handles along the lower edges to make lifting and shifting a much easier affair.
The ability to use one Defender to look after three bikes, along with its impeccable durability and performance, means it’s easily deserving of a 9/10 rating. With the additional carrying handle improvements that could go up to a perfect 10.