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Abus Aventor helmet review

13 Dec 2018
Verdict:

Cool to look at, comfortable to wear but a few fit niggles prevent the Aventor from greatness

Cyclist Rating: 
For 
• Stylish • Comfortable
Against 
• Constant need for readjustment

The Aventor is slick. I’d go as far to say it’s the most aesthetically pleasing helmet I’ve seen in some time (how well I wear it probably less so). It is pretty light – 264g for this size medium.

It’s also really easy to adjust the fit. Yet it makes me somewhat sad, in the way that the thought of Raymond Poulidor never quite winning the Tour de France makes me sad. It is so close to helmet perfection, yet somehow falls short.

Construction-wise there is nothing groundbreaking about the Aventor, but everything right, comprising all the features you’d expect from a top end lid.

The ‘bones’ of the helmet is a composite endoskeleton sandwiched inside expanded polystyrene (EPS), with the white sections part of that skeleton. There are countless large vents front and rear, antimicrobial Xstatic pads and a ratchet-style plastic-wire cradle and nylon straps to hold the thing on your head.

Buy the Abus Aventor road helmet from Tredz

Of that last point, it’s remarkably easy to achieve a comfortable fit with no flappy straps. Abus has designed a neat little buckle where the vertical adjustment is independent of the horizontal, instead of having two straps sandwiched together and running through a single buckle.

That might not sound remarkable, but anyone that’s faffed around with those buckles where the two temple straps triangulate just below the ear will know what I’m talking about, and flappy straps get my goat – it is potentially unsafe and looks scruffy.

In fairness, most brands now eschew such awkward designs on their top end lids, but in terms of easy fit, Abus has nailed it. But there is an annoying caveat. The Aventor is happy enough during a ride, but I found the buckles needed readjusting every few rides (note, the cradle never came loose).

The reason, I think, is that the straps are shiny and the buckles glossy, so unless the straps are under tension (ie when the helmet is on your head) then there isn’t much holding them in one specific place, so they gradually loosen as you take it on an off.

There are little silicone rings that help tether the ends of the straps like the moveable loop on a trouser belt, and making sure they’re slid all the way to the end helps keep things in check.

But it doesn’t solve the loosening problem entirely, and in fact, these silicone bands are susceptible to slipping during prolonged high wind speeds (eg from descending or just a windy day), thus leaving the strap ends they’re meant to secure waving around in an annoying fashion.

The other minor gripe is that sunglasses do not fit all that securely into any of the vents, despite the two middle vents having little silicone bumpers designed to grip sunglass arms.

It’s all niggly stuff that I have learnt to live with, and I can’t see any of this undermining the safety level of the Aventor, but it’s, for this reason, the Aventor a polystyrene Poulidor, a nearly but not quite.

Because elsewise it is great, offering a cool, airy fit that was most welcome this summer, feeling light and svelte on one’s bonce (no Toad from Mario here) and costing a not insane – in the current climate at any rate – £140, with plenty of cut-price deals to be had. It also comes in loads of different colourways, including of course black or white.

One objection might be that the Aventor doesn’t have MIPS – those roll-cage innards now common inside cutting edge lids. But while that is the latest buzz acronym in helmets, the jury is still out with regards MIPS’ efficacy.

Buy the Abus Aventor road helmet from Tredz

If you’re so inclined, an interesting piece of reading based on Snell research (a non-profit organization in the US dedicated to helmet safety and establishing test standards) can be found here https://helmets.org/mips.htm

So all in I really rather like the Aventor, and it has become something of a go-to helmet these past few months. Yet it’s just not quite good enough to knock my trusty Giro Synthe of its perch. Although that is a £200 helmet, and the buckles? Nightmare.

Price: 
£139.99

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