The Endura MT500 helmet has been with us for a few months now and is performing as beautifully as we’d expect from anything bearing the MT500 name. After all, the MT500 jacket was one of our favourite products of last year.
Whilst I’ve yet to bury my head into the floor in Endura’s new helmet the fit, comfort, features and (albeit on paper) protection has been excellent. Of all the helmets we’re reviewing at the moment it’s the one that I keep reaching for above all others.
Wide adjustment visor
Full integrated Koroyd core
Clip on accessory mount
Large vents including top “air intake” zone
Fully goggle compatible including rear strap clip
Front eyewear dock
One-hand micro-adjustment fit system
Antibacterial, fast wicking spacer fabric padding
Covered by Endura’s Crash Replacement Policy
Certified to CE standard EN1078:2012 + A1:2012
The first helmet to meet the Koroyd Safety Initiative
See all those little drinking straws inside the helmet? That’s from a company called Koroyd and is what makes the Endura so special. It’s one of only two mountain bike helmets that uses the technology right now.
There’s a lot of pretty complicated stuff behind Koroyd, but essentially the helmet is lined with hundreds of little plastic tubes which work together to act as a protective, breathable layer.
Koroyd say that up to now helmets have taken materials from the packaging industry to protect our heads. Their technology is the first, we’re told, that is designed specifically to improve energy absorption and safety for riders.
They claim that the helmet standards we use today are 20 years out of date. Those standards allow helmets to be certified as ‘safe’ whilst presenting anything up to a 77% chance of fatal injury when being bashed within what the tests say are acceptable. Koroyd claim that their technology brings that risk right down from 77% to less than 5%.
I don’t have a lab to test the claims and I’m no scientist, but the evidence on their website is detailed, well layed out and convincing. There’s few helmets that give you that level of detail into the protection you’re choosing to trust your brain with.
The evidence – on paper at least – suggests a helmet that is going to do a great job when you inevitably dive head first into the trail.
The fine details
Comfort and air flow is impressive on the MT500 helmet thanks to 14 large vents and two ‘channels’ that help air flow through the helmet. I’ve ridden it in some pretty hot, sweaty conditions and so far, so good.
The peak is adjustable with three positions – the highest of the three allowing room to stash your goggles when they’re not in use. There’s also a (removable) clip on the rear to keep your goggle strap neatly in place.
Up top there’s a neat clip-on mount for lights or cameras, with a GoPro type fitting as standard. You can pop a camera on the mount, clip it into the helmet and just remove the whole thing when you’re done.
Last but not least, the fit and feel of the helmet is good with a deep, snug feeling of your head being ‘in’ the MT500 rather than it perching on top. You can adjust the tightness of the helmet with one-hand with 20 ‘clicks’ of adjustment.
The straps feel a little lighter and less sturdy than other helmets we’ve seen elsewhere and the rubber strap is flimsy and often moves around … but they don’t detract from the overall quality of the helmet.
Worth your money?
It’s said you can’t but a price on safety but there’s no hiding from the price tag. At £150 the Endura MT500 helmet is at the top end of what you’d expect to pay for an open face.
The fit is excellent, it’s very airy and works well in hot conditions. There’s a deep, safe, full coverage feeling when wearing it which doesn’t hurt when riding technical trails. There’s also some nice details that suggest a well thought out, well researched product.
You’ll get those things on a helmet half the price mind…
The big thing for me is that you’re investing your money into everything Koroyd brings to keeping your head safe – plus all the good stuff Endura have brought by designing a good looking, comfortable helmet.
Read the Koroyd website and you’ll see years of research that has gone straight into making cycling helmets safer and reducing your chance of a brain injury. You’re paying for a product that’s taken a good, hard look at the current safety standards and invested in trying to make them better.
The bottom line is that you’ll get an equally comfortable, airy and well fitting helmet for less money. But, crucially, Endura and Koroyd show you exactly how much hard work, research and expertise has gone into keeping your brain safe. They’ve given us an innovative approach to helmet protection and they’ve backed it up with some clear, convincing evidence.
Where helmet protection and safety standards are a murky, difficult to decypher world the piece of mind that I’m well protected makes the Endura MT500 great value.
The Wideopen Recommended award goes to the products that we really, really rate and that we’d happily spend our own own cash on and recommend to our mates. We’re stoked to add the Endura MT500 helmet to that list.