Shoei's new flagship helmet weighs 1,450g (size medium) to the X-Eleven's -- the helmet it replaces -- 1330g (medium). That leaves us a bit baffled as to its appeal over the much cheaper Shoei RF-1100, which again weighs only 1,330g and shares the X-Twelve's new CW-1 visor and whiz-bang QRSA visor mechanism. The Shoei X-Twelve or the Shoei X-Spirit II, as it's known in Europe, also shares the RF...


Shoei's new flagship helmet weighs 1,450g (size medium) to the X-Eleven's -- the helmet it replaces -- 1330g (medium). That leaves us a bit baffled as to its appeal over the much cheaper Shoei RF-1100, which again weighs only 1,330g and shares the X-Twelve's new CW-1 visor and whiz-bang QRSA visor mechanism. The Shoei X-Twelve or the Shoei X-Spirit II, as it's known in Europe, also shares the RF-1100's multi-fiber AIM+ shell construction, which is Snell M2010-approved; the RF-1100's five shell sizes and, as far as we can tell, every other feature except the Emergency Quick Release System. But, the X-Twelve starts at $650 to the RF-1100's $400.
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Weight is such a big deal for motorcycle helmets because it combines

with aerodynamics and fit to determine whether or not a helmet is

comfortable over long periods and during athletic riding. Fancy helmets

like the X-Twelve have traditionally distinguished themselves from

cheaper options by being made from more exotic materials and therefore

weighing less.


In fact, the only potential significant advantage over the RF-1100 may

be improved ventilation -- the X-Twelve has five inlet and ten exhaust

vents -- but the RF is also ventilated to an extraordinary degree with

three inlets and six exhausts. Unfortunately, we've never been able to

get Shoei to return our calls or emails, so we can't clear up these

issues for you.


The EQRS system is simply a couple of plastic tabs that disengage the

cheek pads when pulled. This enables emergency responders to more

easily remove the helmet post crash, potentially avoiding further

damage to the spine or neck.


Like the range-topping Arai RX-7 Corsair V -- the X-Twelve's closest

competition -- the X-Twelve now uses a removable and washable CoolMax

interior.


Check our Shoei RF-1100 story for a video demonstrating the function of the CW-1 visor and QRSA mechanism.


If you think the X-Twelve sounds a little disappointing, you're not

alone. That the weight has increased by over 100g from the X-Eleven

without any explanation points to either careless design or careless

marketing; if that increase is justified or necessitated by some new

feature or increased safety, why not tell us about it? If we were in

the market for a Shoei helmet we'd just buy the cheaper, equally

high-spec, lighter, better looking RF-1100.

Shoei

Thanks for the tip, Asaph.