Pulling from their experience in aerodynamic head production for power sports, the new Bell Star Pro takes a unique approach to aero bicycle helmets with a solid front and adjustable vents.
Ridden by Team Belkin at the Giro and now, officially, at the Tour de France, the Star Pro utilizes a slider on the top rear to open and close the vents. Unlike traditional helmets, all of the visible vents face rearward and act only as exhaust ports, relying on Bell’s Overbrow vents on the bottom front of the helmet to pull air into the interior channels, over the head and out the sides and rear, taking body heat with it. They say it works almost as well as a traditional, non-aero road helmet at dumping heat, all while making you faster…
More and more brands are introducing aero helmets, including sister brand Giro with their new Synthe. And thankfully, they’re getting better and better looking, too (sorry, Air Attack). But Bell says their latest effort is faster than all of them, especially with the vents closed. That translates into a helmet that helps you stay cool and collected with the front group under “normal” racing conditions, then close the vents and maximize aerodynamics for the finish line sprint.
But aero isn’t the most important aspect of a helmet, safety is. To that end, The Star Pro uses softer, lower density EPS foam against the head and firmer foam on the outside. This helps diffuse impacts without losing structural integrity.
Next comes comfort, so they’ve used their Float Fit retention mech, which adjusts for both circumference and height. The chin straps are soft and flat, using a new, very flat adjuster under the ear that lays close to your cheeks to reduce drag.
Helmets are available with either clear or tinted Zeiss Shield visors that slots in underneath the brow and further improves aerodynamics.
When not in use, it’ll snap onto the top of the helmet and attach via magnets.
It’s CPSC and CE EN1078 certified, will come in six colors (two hi-viz) and retail for $240 on its own, $280 with visor shield. Available in three sizes starting in October. Claimed weight is 280g.