Bell Helmets have had their ups and downs in the past few years, however, they feel it’s time to get back to their roots. Bell helmets are deeply rooted in motocross and auto racing, and lest we forget, were worn by icons such as Steve McQueen and Evel Knievel. Quite possibly the best quote I’ve heard about Bell helmets, is that “people who buy Bell helmets plan to use them.” Aligning themselves with that message, the new line of Bell lids are as functional as they are stylish offering some pretty trick features whether you’re looking for full face, open face, or a skid lid.
More on the new helmets after the break!
Co-developed with Aaron Gwin, the new Bell Full 9 is build to withstand the rigors of World Cup level downhill racing and everything in between. Rider safety, especially after a crash was given a high priority for the helmet which is why the ASTM DH certified helmet is Eject Removal System compatible.
The Eject system is available as an aftermarket accessory and is basically an airbag that installs at the top of the inside of the helmet just under the pads. In the event of a crash that your helmet needed to be removed, medical personnel would first remove the magnetic X-static cheek pads, and then attach a hand pump to the Eject hose. Needing only a few pumps, the helmet will slowly lift of the rider’s head minimizing the chance of further injury from jostling the injured rider’s neck.
If the Eject system isn’t enough to satisfy your Pimp My Helmet desires, Bell takes it a step further with the option for integrated speakers. Yes, speakers. According to Bell there will be a few compatible aftermarket helmet speakers that you can drop in, while routing the wire out the back of the helmet.
Sticking with the multi media theme, each Full 9 includes both a GoPro and a Contour camera mount. Walk around any bike park and you are sure to see tons of riders with cameras protruding from their heads, so why not offer them a better way to mount it? Both mounts offer 360° camera rotation as well as up and down, plus the mounts will break away in a crash saving your camera and possibly your neck. Once you’ve dusted yourself off and stopped your camera from bouncing down the trail, simply pop it back into place and keep filming. Don’t plan on using a camera? Simply remove the mount and take an advantage of another vent which channels more air into specially designed ventilation channels in the EPS foam. Even with the camera mount installed, air is forced into the helmet through the Overbrow ventilation ports and then exits out the back of the helmet after it’s been pulled through the vent channels.
The Full 9 will be offered in 3 distinct shell sizes that use two different pad sets, for 6 unique sizes from XS-XXL with a claimed weight of 1050g. $400.
Like the Full 9 but have no need for a full face? Then you may be interested in Bell’s new Enduro lid, the Super. Designed to address the needs of Enduro and Super D riders, as well as just all around rippers, the Super provides an interesting mix of features to appeal to the more gravity minded. Ventilation is handled by the same Overbrow vents as the Full 9, as well as 25 additional external vents. On the inside, the Speed Dial fit system along with X-Static padding should keep you comfortable as you’re bombing down the mountain.
Wondering about those goggles? What’s a Super D helmet without goggle compatibility, right? If you want to run the visor, you can simply use the bottom of the visor mounts to keep the goggle strap from riding up, but what if you don’t want the visor? In that case, you can take advantage of the included Goggle keeper that mounts where the visor would if it were there. In addition to the goggle mount, the Super also includes a lower tech version of the Full 9’s GoPro (only) mount that velcros in place under the pads. Still, it’s a really nice touch on a helmet that will likely see quite a bit of “is my GoPro on?” action.
Available for $125 in three sizes, the 390g lid isn’t the lightest, but it offers a lot of coverage. I haven’t been dying for a Bell MTB helmet for sometime, but I’m finding the bright green Super pretty hard to resist.