Shoei have just revealed their new X-Spirit III racing helmet in a press conference at Aragon in Spain.
World champion Marc Marquez is expected to give the new lid its race debut in this weekend’s MotoGP race at the Spanish circuit.
Marquez has been involved in testing the X-Spirit III, as has British racer Bradley Smith - but neither has yet worn the helmet in a race.
The main benefits of the new lid involve superior aerodynamics. New ‘wings’ on each side of the helmet’s rear are designed to boost stability. The standard wider wings are best for straight-line stability at high speed.
Riders will also have the option to fit narrower wings, available at extra cost, on circuits where lots of corners mean their head is turned to the side more often.
There’s a new design of comfort lining that lets the rider tilt the helmet back or forth on their head by four degrees. That’s useful for those who find the helmet brow obstructing their forward vision when tucked into the riding position.
The X-Spirit III will be fitted with the top-spec Pinlock Evo, which resists fogging more effectively than the standard Pinlock insert. The pins can also be adjusted using the posts on the outside of the visor that hold tear-offs.
With increased ventilation, including air channels through the cheekpads, Shoei are going toe-to-toe with Japanese rivals Arai. Both firms are releasing new race-spec helmets for 2016.
The X-Spirit III will go on sale in the UK early in 2016 and plain colours will cost £549.99. There will be three graphic designs and race replicas expected to be unveiled soon (there are no pictures yet) and they will cost £649.99 in the UK.