I've been using this £599.99 Arai RX-7V helmet for three years and in that time have covered well over 50,000 while wearing it.
With all the road testing, racing, commuting and long-distance miles I do, I spend more time in my Arait han I do in my house. Replacing the hugely successful RX-7GP, this is the latest, range-topping RX-7V, complete with racy top scoops, a stronger new shell, new visor mechanism and vent controls. It started life as a plain white model and has been custom-painted by Rich-Art Concepts (£600, www.richartconcepts.co.uk) to their usual, impeccably high standard.
Even after all this time and distance covered, my Arai still offers the same cossetting, velvety sumptuousness it had when it was new. Once you get the hang of it, the visor system is a lot quicker and less brutal to use than the one on the GP. And the removable chin curtain, which stops air blasting up into your face, is a god send on icy-cold days.
Earlier this year I crashed wearing it (a 70mph corner-entry, cold tyre highside at Valencia). I grazed the top, damaged one of the scoops and broke the rear spoiler off, but I’ve had it checked out at scrutineering before racing and been wearing it since.
Those giant air scoops offer superb ventilation when it’s hot, but unsurprisingly they cause turbulence and create a lot of noise at high speed. I wear ear plugs, so it’s not such a problem, but helmets without stuck-on vents will always be quieter.