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Levi's Commuter 511 Shorts

Sale $31.97 $63.95 50% off

Item # LVS0037

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  • Harvest Gold, 30 ($31.97)
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Item # LVS0037

Arrive in style.

With summer upon us, there's no denying that shorts are the ideal choice piece to beat the heat. However, when it comes to your summer commutes, you're either faced with kook'ing it around town in your full kit, going completely Fred in bib shorts and a T-shirt, or succumbing to the discomfort of your everyday shorts. That is until now. With the new Levi's Commuter 511 Shorts, you'll benefit from a cycling-specific design, fabric treatment, and style.

These aren't some run-of-the-mill, one-off attempt at appeasing a subculture. Instead, Levi's worked closely with cyclists in multiple cities around America, distributing prototypes and accepting feedback. And, as a result of developing the shorts in accordance to critique, Levi's effectively dialed-in the fit, accoutrements, and finishes to what cyclists are actually asking for.

Accordingly, Levi's adapted its slim-fit 511 shorts to the purpose of cycling. Now, the 511 features a water-resistant and dirt-repellent NanoSphere protective finish to make commuting in hostile weather a little more acceptable, especially if your destination is the office. It's for this very reason that Levi's also incorporated an odor-resistant Sanitized finish to the shorts, too. Levi's also made these shorts perfect for trips where your bag is staying at home by installing a U-lock holster along the rear of the waistband. This way, you're not ramming your lock down your shorts, wearing out your belt, or being forced to wear a fanny-pack.

In terms of durability, Levi's double-layered the seat panel and the rear pockets. Additionally, the crotch of the 511 is gusseted in order to resist tearing and saddle abrasion. In terms of fit, it's important to note that Levi's considers the 511 as a slim-fit pair of shorts. They sit slightly below the waist and feature a slim, slightly tapered leg. However, for the sake of coverage while in the saddle, these 511s have been cut higher in the rear than a standard pair.

For the pockets, these shorts have been given two hand, two rear, and one coin pocket. And to increase your visibility to motorists in low-light conditions, Levi's incorporated reflective 3M Scotchlite tape on the interior of the short's cuffs.

The Levi's Commuter 511 Shorts are available in the colors Harvest Gold and Oil Blue and in 10 sizes from 28 to 38.

Tech Specs

[shorts] 98% cotton, 2% elastane, [treatment] NanoSphere protective finish, [finish] Sanitized protective finish
2 hand, 2 rear, 1 key, 1 U-lock holster
belt loops with button closure
Gusseted Crotch:
Recommended Use:

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  • Familiarity: I've used it several times
  • Fit: True to size

I love these shorts. Super stretchy and look good. The reflective inseam is so freaking cool. They look super weird folded down, so probably don't do that. It has a little pocketish thing (not sure what to call it) for a u-lock. I've only used that a few times, works fine. Not really impressed with the stain resistance. I got one drop of ice cream or something on them, they have been washed. And its still there. LAME. But overall awesome shorts.



  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
  • Fit: True to size
  • Size Bought: 30

I'm no stranger to the 511 pants and felt a need to try the shorts. I love how stretchy they are and being quite skinny-legged, I think the fit is spot on for a size 30.

My one issue with them is the bottom cuff - if you choose to unroll them, they do flare out quite a bit; think bell-bottom shorts. If you keep the cuffs rolled to show the reflective tape though, it's a non-issue.

I'll definitely be picking up another pair for climbing because of the mobility these allow.

Five One One, what's your emergency?

  • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
  • Fit: Runs small

I bought these shorts based on how much I absolutely love the Commuter 511 pants. I haven't been able to really test them, but after wearing them for a little bit I have some impressions. The are a much tighter fit than the 511 pants. The waist seems to be about the same, but the thighs are super tight, maybe they will stretch out? I'll update my review after more use. I was also surprised to see that they have a button fly when the description says it is a zipper. Not really a big deal, just something that I didn't expect. They are also shorter than I was hoping they would be. I'm sure they will be great for biking and probably even rockclimbing, I'll just have to get used to seeing my knees, but once again, not a deal breaker. The reflective seam is cool, the build quality is great and I can't wait to use them when it is a little warmer for the morning commute.

511, Oh thank heaven

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
  • Fit: Runs small

Love these shorts. Super comfy. They have a little stretch to them. Great on the bike, around town, hiking, basically whatever. Haven't really noticed the nanosphere finish working, but they do dry fast when they get wet. They do have a very slim cut. I am 5'8" and 130lbs and the 29 fits me great. If you have large thighs these probably aren't the shorts for you. I use them extensively for mountain biking. Love the street style. I loved them so much I got one of each color. My only gripe is that the light colors tend to stain easily when covered with mud from mountain biking. Wish they came in some darker colors.

Great Shorts

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
  • Fit: True to size

I would give them a 5 but my only complaint is that if you roll them down they flare out, a lot. Ironing doesn't help. Great slim fit and amazing quality

Tight and Tight

    They are tighter shorts, but they fit well and are stretchy. The extra ergonomic crotch area helps them fit nicely without hurting your goods. One thing i'm going to mention, that may be a little too much info for some... is that I got the good ole' swass butt when riding. Sorry for anyone walking behind me and had to see the big wet spot on my butt... Scaring women and children one stop at a time.

    Avg. ride time: 9m per week
    • Average ride time is based on Strava activity over the last 3 months. Give your reviews credibility by connecting your account.

    Snap into a slim Jean. Ohhhh Yeaaaaaahhh

    • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

    My GF bought me the 34 and i could not get them halfway past by thighs, but i knew the waist might be an issue based on the neck test. I exchanged them for 36's and found the thighs to be still tight, basically they were old cycling shorts tight. No 38's in stock and even if slim i'd be swimming in the waist. I loved the features and the color, fabric, but also coming from climbing i thought the crotch would be more gussetted. if they only had a non slim version of this. 21 inch calves, 27 inch thighs and a 34 inch waist is why i can barely fit into standard pants. Ended up giving the 36 away to a friend who loves them in the summer. Agrees high waist in the back.

    tight but comfortable during ride

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

    I almost returned this due to its fit but i was really impressed with the craftsmanship and design that i found myself trying to really like this pair. This sat in the closet for about 3 months before actually hitting the saddle. But once i rode with it, this quickly became my go to shorts for road cycling. I typically wear loose shorts but the comfort and cool styling of these shorts got me reaching for it quite often. I'm a casual roadie and does it to stay in shape for mountain biking.

    Love the pockets and the buttons on these. You'll look like hipster since they're quite skinny around the legs. But i prefer this over the typical lycra shorts. I just got me a second pair. Too bad they ran out of the other color.

    -Levi Commuter-

    • Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share
    • Fit: Runs small

    I bought these as a gift, and he has deemed these his new favorite shorts. His main form of transportation is his bike, and he kept blowing out his jeans after a month or so of wear - with the reinforcement in these jeans, it is a safe bet these will last a bit longer! He did say these came a bit shorter than he had expected, but regardless they worked well for him.


    • Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share
    • Fit: Runs small

    6' 175lbs

    Thighs were too thick for these slim shorts. material was awesome, but had to return.

    Solid shorts

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times
    • Fit: Runs small

    I typically don't wear shorts unless at the gym or doing something outdoors, but bicycle commuting to work in Atlanta summers has forced my hand. I looked all over for some slim-fitting shorts, and finally decided to give these a go. I bought a pair in each color.

    First, as others have stated, they do fit skinny, both in the waist and leg. I have chicken legs and typically wear 510's, and these fit about like those, but they stretch A LOT. They're kind of a thinner cotton chino material with a lot of stretch, not really denim at all. I like them, and the light weight is nice for the heat.

    Sizing...As others have stated, I would size up an inch. I wear a 32 in Levi's usually, sometimes a 33 (which gives me a lot of room), and a 33 in these fits me like a 32 in regular jeans. I've worn 511 shorts before, and these are consistent with 511 shorts--skinny and a little smaller at the waist.

    I've never really been super interested in the commuter series, even though I do commute, until recently I got tired of the crotch of all my pants getting shredded. There is a definite difference in quality between normal Levi's and the commuter series. There are more details, better durability, and the fit is better (higher waist in the back is nice not only for commuting, just for covering your crack).

    Overall, really nice shorts, and the fit on my skinny legs isn't too tight, but slim enough. I didn't like the look of the reflective tape on the sides, so I just took an Xacto knife and removed the stitching and took it out. It took about 10 mins. The green shorts look almost the exact same color as the picture. Maybe a touch lighter, but really close. I was hoping they'd be a bit lighter, but I guess they'll fade with time.

    Skinny even for skinny jeans

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times

    I bought these shorts based upon my great experience with the commuter jeans and commuter trousers. The full length pants from the Levi's commuter series are awesome, and I wear 511's in a 34 and they have always fit well. For some reason, these shorts fit surprisingly tight in the leg. As one reviewer said, most cyclists with developed quads will probably find these to fit poorly. The waist and seat of the pants is not bad, they are just very skinny legs. Levi's just came out with some redesigned commuter trousers, and those look to be a little better cut. That said, the quality and craftsmanship is just what you'd expect (in a good way), and for cruising on the townie or fixie to a bar, you'll fit in right alongside the rest of the hipsters. For the sale price, I'd buy again.

    Skinny, not slim fit

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times

    If you actually ride a bike, then these probably aren't going to fit your legs. They're pretty snug. Also, as others have mentioned, being bike specific shorts, they should probably be a little higher in the back as well. Then there is this awesome loop to stick your u-lock through. . . except a normal size u-lock won't fit. . . just a mini lock, so that's no good either.

    They're worth the cost on sale. . . full-price, no way. I don't recommend them unless you've some super-skinny hipster legs.

    New Favorite shorts

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times
    • Fit: True to size

    Color is awesome. Oil blue looks more teal or aquamarine in different light. Material feels durable but is stretchy and comfy. The interior of the pocket is the same as the rest of the short unlike some other brands where its a thinner more light weight material. Button fly for quick pit stops. Fit is skinny but not like compression pants. I'm also not a pro cyclist with massive thighs, but I do ride my bike to work and school. Haven't had a chance to do that in them yet. They feel a bit heavy on the waist and fit well enough not to need a belt. Definitely snug on the gonads. And the bottoms do flare out if not rolled, but it's less intense after the first couple of washes. Great shorts overall, might just wear them every day.

    New Favorite shorts
    Avg. ride time: 7m per week
    • Average ride time is based on Strava activity over the last 3 months. Give your reviews credibility by connecting your account.

    Tight in the legs..

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times
    • Fit: True to size

    While i may not have the biggest legs in the world or the smallest these fit a little tight in the legs compared to other 511s and it may be due to the "commuter" fit.

    Waist size is perfect and I really enjoy the slightly higher rise (designed to not look like a plumber on the bike), but like everyone is saying these are a little snugger in the legs than other levis.

    That being said, I'm probably going to pick up another pair. I'm alright with the tighter legs and really dig the rest of the fit and stretch. I'll have to have a riding/work pair and a clean pair.

    Gota agree, too tight for me - great shorts though if you like them skinny.

    Skinnier than the 511 pants

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times
    • Fit: Runs small

    I rock the 511 pants on a daily basis and they fit awesome. They FIT, not baggy, not skinny, but fit.

    These are NOT the same fit as the pants. These are nut huggers for sure and are definately leaning towards that hipster-punk-rocker-skinny legs-underwear hanging out the back look.

    That being said they are relatively comfortable aside from the lack of room for the man parts. I almost returned but decided ill keep them if I feel like turning hipster. Also the quality is very good like the pants, and if i were someone who was into skinny jeans ide be soked

    Compression Shorts

      I love these shorts so much, but wow do they run tight. I love me some tight and stretchy pants, but I am on the fence if I should return these. The material is a nice tech stretch, the color is awesome (oil blue), the fit is actually true to size - other than how tight the thighs are. These are not a slim fit, they are a skinny fit. I would size up to get a looser thigh, but the waist is just so perfect. No riding in them yet, but if you have any sort of leg muscle, get ready to flex on peeps with these things. I mean, Levi's JUST BARELY missed here.

      Great if you have skinny quads.

      • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
      • Fit: True to size

      The shorts themselves are great, the material looks quality and has a slight amount of stretch to it. But the cut is definitely for skinny hipster kids. The 30in waist fit me perfectly, but I could barely get my quads in the shorts. I gave them to my little brother.