City slickers: Best jet motorcycle helmets

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Jet motorcycle helmets are the best helmets to feel the freedom you get from an open face without sacrificing all the safety.

For many, the feeling of wearing an open-face motorcycle helmet and the liberating sensation that brings is an essential part of riding. However, there are limitations to an open-face helmet, including the very real chance of something impacting your face, which is where jet motorcycle helmets come in.

Based on an open face shell, jet motorcycle helmets have a visor that covers the face completely down to the chin and offers a huge field of vision and the ability to enjoy some open-face-style riding while keeping insects and debris out of the face. Great for a combination of cool and calm riding.

The great view, excellent sound-carrying capabilities and that protection to the face make jet motorcycle helmets very popular with commuters and urban riders, particularly on the Continent; you can see hordes of maxi-scooters or small bikes whizzing around the centre of Rome, Madrid or Paris with suited commuters heading off to work, in their work clothes with a jet helmet on and their briefcase strapped to the back.

When it comes to safety ratings, all motorcycle helmets on sale in the UK, including those here, must conform to the standard ECE22.05 and while many full-face and flip-front helmets will have been tested and rated by SHARP, the UK government testing house, open-face helmets are not tested, so you will need to make your choice on the manufacturer, style and fit.

The latter is as important on a jet motorcycle helmet as it is on any other kind – it should be snug and not move around once done up but should still be comfortable.

Here is a selection of jet-style helmets.

This helmet from LS2 is great value at less than £50 and comes with a huge optically correct main visor that can be rotated upwards. The chin strap is padded and fastens with a microbuckle strap and there are also air vents on the top of the head to ensure airflow across the top as well as around the chin and neck. The shell is formed in polycarbonate and the interior is removable and washable.
This open-face Jet version of AGV's sporty K5 is available in plain white, black or this Nardo Grey version. The carbon/fibreglass shell is available in two sizes with a further four sizes of three-density liner to offer seven size options in total.

In addition to the airflow from the open visor, it has three front vents and two rear extractors, with a large main and secondary sun visor. The main visor closes with a magnetic catch for ease of use in the urban jungle and is ready for an anti-fog insert.
Price: £260.99 (was £374.99)
The Schuberth P1 Pro is another premium lid from the manufacturer and not only is it designed for optimum airflow around the chin, but it also features a vent mounted on the top of the head for airflow across the top to the rear through a specially designed channel within the interior.

The huge main visor sits away from the face for a feeling of openness and is ready for an anti-fog insert and there is also a drop-down sun visor for those bright commutes. It also comes with speakers and microphone for a communications system pre-installed.
Price: £153.74 (was £204.99)
The Flyon uses a shell with a composite-fibre construction and a moulded liner with removable centre pad, cheek pads and strap cover so they can be washed. The enormous visor is ready for a Pinlock Max Vision anti-fog insert and is equipped with a locking mechanism to prevent unwanted opening.

There is a drop-down internal sun visor for bright rides and there are two vents atop the helmet, to create cooling airflow through to the exhaust at the rear. The Flyon is ready for Caberg’s Just Speak Bluetooth comms system.
According to Shoei, the J-Cruise uses all the features from the manufacturer's range in an open-face Jet style. The shell, formed in organic and multi-composite fibres, is available in three sizes while the interior uses removable cheek and centre pads for cleaning.

The main visor has mountings for a Pinlock anti-fog insert and there are air inlets on the brow with exhaust vents at the rear to create cooling through-flow of air. Different sized cheek and centre pads are available to tailor the fit and there is a drop-down sun visor.
Price: £172.49 (was £229.99)
The SHARK Citycruiser is very similar to the company's EVOJet, the latter a full flip-front. The Citycruiser has long side pieces that help offer protection to the chin and the deep main visor extends down to allow airflow while giving a huge field of vision.

The airflow is further enhanced with two inlets at the front and a rear extractor and there is a drop-down sun visor and the helmet is prepared for SHARK’s Sharktooth intercom and communications system.
Formed in polycarbonate, the N21's shell comes in two sizes to offer a good fit for riders and has a pleasingly classic design. The overall look is streamlined and smooth, giving it a contemporary feel though there are also several retro finishes available.

It uses a wide main visor with an internal drop-down sun visor for sunny days though there are no vents on the top of the helmet. It uses ClimaComfort interior padding and there is a helmet lock ring to secure the lid to the bike when not in use.

About the author: After qualifying as a mechanical engineer, Jim Blackstock began working on magazines in the early 1990s. He remains passionate about product testing to ensure readers know what products offer good value and why. He relishes torrential rain to see if riding kit keeps water out and an hour or two to tinker on a project bike in his workshop.

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