Icon is always doing things just a little bit differently and the Airflite is no exception. Dig that visor. This helmet has the sense that it is the bastard love child of a full face race helmet and a dirt helmet, which is probably exactly what Icon was going for. Trending toward the ADV crowd, with an internal drop-down sun visor it is a feature-rich and very cool looking helmet, if a bit heavy, for its $250 (solid color) to $300-ish (for race graphics) price tag.
These new helmets come in solid or graphic paint schemes, and if you are looking for a decent bare-bones full-face helmet that still offers a drop-down internal sun shade this one might be your helmet. Icon calls its features “trickle down technology” but what that probably means is they have the molds and parts from other helmets and it’s cheaper to use the same stuff everywhere. Hey, you’re still getting features like better venting that were designed for more-expensive lids. At $185 (for solid colors; just over $200 for graphics) there’s not much to complain about.
The AX9 trends way more toward the dirty end of helmets, with a removable dirt-helmet beak as well as a removable visor, so you can replace that with goggles for your weekend dirt rides. At around $500 it’s on the pricier side, but think about NOT having to buy a dirt helmet separate from your street helmet. You can ride to the trails, pop the beak on and the visor off, and go tree-hunting to your heart’s content.
Bilt Power-Boost Modular
For those slightly more economy-minded riders who prefer a modular helmet, comes Cycle Gear’s house brand, Bilt, with their zero-frills modular. It has a drop-down sun visor which seems de riguer on modulars these days, but if you’re looking for any other features above and beyond a bone-stock street helmet you won’t find it here. At $130 the price isn’t inflated either.
This is HJC’s budget offering. It still features an internal drop-down sun shade, however. Its biggest feature is its inexpensive price. At around $140 it’s a decent helmet from a reliable budget helmet manufacturer. Nah, we won’t tell you it’s great, but it’s better than nothing!
HJC’s latest modular offering isn’t quite available in the States yet, so we’ll have to guess on pricing. It’s offered for €150 which may or may not translate to around $170 US (you may notice, if you gear-shop while travelling like I do, that the numbers kind of stay the same region to region for stuff like this, so it may end up $150 US). While details are thin, this may be HJC’s update/replacement for the IS-Max modular. Either way it’s a good looking lid.
HJC I 70
A decent inexpensive lid, which seems to be what HJC is good at. This one is the successor to HJC’s IS-17 with a few updates (like better venting). If you’ve been a fan of HJC all along this might be your natural for a new hat. It’s hard to go wrong with the sub-$200 price tag.
It’s a great, inexpensive full-face commuter helmet. The venting is top-notch in this intermediate oval shape. The visor ships with pinlock pegs so you can mount a pinlock visor into it with no hassle. There’s a great feature in the front of the helmet that lets you positively crack the visor open a smidge to let a whole bunch of air through. At around $200 this Dainese-owned brand is fantastic bang for the buck.
Schuberth C3 Lite
Schuberth heard the general wailing of the riding population with this one. We don’t want to spend $900 on a helmet waaaah! So they’ve introduced the C3 Lite, which to me looks like a reintroduction of the original C3 with its price (slightly) slashed.
Sedici Viaggio Parlare Sena Bluetooth ADV
Cycle Gear’s other house brand, Sedici, surprises us with the features on this ADV style helmet. Good venting, a dirt-style beak, a drop-down sun visor and integrated Sena bluetooth, all for around $230. Constantly suspicious of Cycle Gear’s house brand gear, I can’t promise it’s going to feel like its fit and finish compares to a better helmet manufacturer, but if you’re looking for a comm system in a “good enough” helmet this might be just the ticket.
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