Three years ago the concept of an aero road helmet as all but non-existent. You had just two choices—a light, well-ventilated helmet, or a fast (and hot) time trial helmet. Fast forward to today and several companies have rolled out hybrids seeking to balance weight, ventilation, and aerodynamics. Check out our gallery below for some of our favorite hybrids, including a few that may already be in AG hands for testing!
We first reported on the Synthe in June, but this was our first time seeing one up close. The first thing you can’t help but notice is how “normal” it looks. It’s hard to believe that this helmet beats the Air Attack in a traditional road position (head angle of 30 degrees at a speed of 25mph). And when you pick it up you’re in for another surprise–this thing is really light, weighing in at only 250g for the CPSC medium version.
The Bell Star Pro had quite the introduction this summer. Soon after being introduced, it won a muddy Stage 5 of the Tour. Lars Boom could be seen opening and closing the vents depending on both his ventilation needs and his want to stay dry. Not only did we get to play with the Star Pro at Interbike, but Bell also had a cutaway model available that showed how complex the internal mechanisms really were. Even better, when we arrived home, we found a Star Pro sitting on our door step waiting for review. Make sure to stay tuned as we put it through its paces.
We have been seeing the Catlike Mixino for years atop the heads of team Movistar, so we were excited to get up close and personal with one. The Mixino comes in three versions – Road, VD2.0 and AeroShell VD 2.0. The VD2.0 and AeroShell VD2.0 both employ covers (with the AeroShell’s cover able to be removed) to help provide an aerodynamic edge. Catlike also has a number of TT helmets – the Aero Plus and Chrono WT. The WT is a short course, less ventilated option while the Aero Plus has additional ventilation more suitable for long course triathletes.
We stopped by the Kask booth specifically to take a look at the Bambino – one of our all-time favorite TT helmets. Although we ended up spending most of our time looking at their Infinity helmet. Like the Bell Star Pro, the Infinity uses active aerodynamics to allow for a little extra ventilation or some extra speed. We’re definitely looking forward to experiencing it first-hand.
POC has also entered the aero helmet market in a big way with three different options based on your needs. The Tempor is the most recognizable of the POC options, featuring a unique wide design. The Cerebel is POC’s new short-tail aero helmet meant for those riders who cannot stay in the perfect TT position for the entirety of the race. Finally, there is the Octal, which comes in three versions–standard, MIPs and Aero. As you would expect, the MIPS version adds MIPs protection technology, which is designed to reduce the rotational forces on the brain caused by angled impacts to the head. The Octal closes off some of the front vents to create a more aerodynamic shape for fighting the wind.
POC was also showing off a prototype AVIP Back Protection Jersey, which is designed to protect your lower back in case of a fall. Definitely a very cool concept we hope to see more of.