Louis Garneau’s P-09 helmet has earned quite the reputation for being a particularly quick lid. Results from AeroCamp seem to indicate that it’s an aero helmet that works for a large number of people, which piqued our interest. Given how hard it is to select the perfect aero helmet without the benefit of a trip to a wind tunnel, data like this gives the average age grouper a pretty good shot at getting a fast lid the first time. With that in mind, we picked one up to test out and see how the P-09 is outside the tunnel. Let’s dig in.
The LG P-09 comes in four colors and is packed with features. The helmet has a mid-tail design that truncates early into a fairly sizeable exhaust vent that is fed through channels in the helmet to keep temperatures down as well as deposit air into the low-pressure zone just behind your shoulders. There is a vent just above the brow that ships with a rubber plug that can increase flow if you need it, and slits behind the ears that aid with cooling, as well as awareness of events around you compared to helmets with fully-enclosed ear cups. There is also an optional visor, available in four colors. It uses the very comfortable Spiderlock Pro TT retention mechanism, and the ears are flexible for ease of getting it on and off.
In fact, the P-09 is one of the easiest helmets to put on and off that we’ve tested. The ear cups are semi-flexible and have a small plastic retainer on the trailing edge which, when pulled, give a small “pop” and allow about a centimeter of play to get the helmet on or off without feeling like your ears might come off in the process. For anyone who has worn a rigid ear cup aero helmet, this will be a welcome change. To make putting it on even easier, if you have the visor installed, it flips outwards and holds securely out of the way until you pull it down. No more scraping the bridge of your nose with the sharp edges of the lens. All in all, when it comes to getting a lid on and off in a hurry, the LG P-09 is easily the best we’ve tested to date.
If you’re worried about keeping your head cool with an aero helmet, the P-09 has you covered there, too. Your head does get warm with the plug in, which would be worrisome on a particularly hot, long course. However, we wouldn’t really worry about that. In Aero Camp testing, even with the plug out (and visorless, too) it tested neck-and-neck with the McLaren lid – and is incredibly cool, to boot. The airflow is so significant that you can actually feel it going through the helmet as you ride. We took it out for some long rides and were very pleased with it’s cooling abilities.
At full price, $349.99 MSRP, given how well this helmet cools and the ease of which it goes on and off in transition, the LG P-09 represents an incredible value. The P-09 is certainly not cheap, but at the time of this writing the white and blue colorway is on a tremendous sale nearly everywhere for around $200. At that price, this helmet is an absolute steal. If you’re on the market for an aero lid, but don’t have the extra money or time to spare on a wind tunnel session, the P-09 is a great option for buying precious seconds back on the bike. It represents the best option for the largest number of people, and the features it brings along with class-leading drag numbers will have you singing its praises, too. Louis Garneau hit it out of the park with the P-09, and we think we’ll be seeing a lot more of them in transition soon.