ICON Airflite Helmet Review Riders Choice For Style
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Welcome to our detailed breakdown of a new icon air flight helmet. This is the Airflite, the next in line from Icon in their evolution of premium lids.
In my opinion, the air flight steals race and aggressive DNA from your airframe pro, but really what the air flight does is it makes it a little bit more tenable and adds versatility that allows you to ride every day on the street.
What I think about that I think about a helmet that will do well in the Tuck, but really do well in the 3/4 to their upright riding position. It has this drop-down Sun Visor, but most importantly is it will punch you in the mouth and scare the kids and moms that live on your cul-de-sac.
The answer to that question is yes. It's badass, we've never seen anyone do that Hannibal Lecter face shield until Icon did it. They've eaten the other helmets in and around this $250 set and digested their kidneys with a nice Chianti.
if we look at it, this comes all the way down, and when you see it clear you're like oh that's cool, it's kind of bing, it's got some venting baked into it but when you see it in achromatic or an Iridium or a mirrored shield.
It goes from cool to SuperDuper badass, so that is what jumps out at us out of the gates. Now, a couple of quick hits on our opinion of what they could improve, then we're going to get into some of the nuance and fit.
The first thing about this helmet that jumped out at me is where you have an air mata, which gets you to the track. It's DOT, ECE, just like this, but it's going to come in around 3 pounds 10 ounces, and be a bit more streamlined.
This helmet is aggressive, I'm not calling it non-aerodynamic, but I'm just calling it aggressive in its build. it comes in 3 pounds 12 ounces, so couple extra ounces you're getting some additional drop-down Sun Visor functionality, but again, not the lightest helmet in the icon set.
For that matter, Airframe Pro is going to be around three and a half pounds as well. So when you start to think about it three shell shapes, and again it is a bigger helmet, but again it's finding the intersection of versatility and aggression.
Now a quick note on fitment. As Icon typically does, this helmet is long and narrow. I'm an intermediate oval; I fit most of the helmets on the American market; about 80% of them, and most people out there are intermediate oval.
A little bit longer front to back this helmet is even more narrow, it fits like an airframe pro, it fits like an air Amata, again consistent within the icon line.
If you're like my head shape, it'll fit you. If you're any more neutral around than I am, this isn't for you.
Diving into some of the more nuanced elements of this helmet, this shell is a polycarb, three shells like I said, the airmata has four, the airframe pro I believe has four.
You have a ventilation structure here, and a lot is going on. We'll start with the back and work our way forward. You have this big ghosted spoiler, and remember this helmet starts around $250, this is a rubber tone, it's a little bit more expensive, and your graphics come in just over the $300 mark.
If we look along the back here back to our vents, notice passive vents alone on the back, the same cutout here that we see in an airframe pro along the backside that's channel air underneath and give you that great cutaway against your leathers or your race suit.
Notice the channeling, big channeling your two central vents up top are chimney vents, again lovely fit and finish, nice positive feel, even with a gloved hand, that's what we look for in a helmet.
We work our way down here into the Baines section of our program you notice we have our vents along the chin. If we open it up, it's like super hardcore.
Behind it, there's the two-position open and closed mechanism, actually three. The first position goes to the shield. The second position goes to the face.
Again you can fine-tune your airflow when you're using this bottom area of ventilation. You'll also have some slight cutaways here along the side, and you can see it as you work your way down.
They have really pulled this helmet together from a venting standpoint, and from an aerodynamic standpoint. I have to tell you it plays in the same vein, it's a bigger helmet, but it's going to play in that same vein as the airframe pro.
Other improvements here with this shield to remember these shields come in a lot of different colors and flavors the iridium, which are the more badass ones they're going to be around $50, so no small investment there.
I'm not going to rip one of these side pods off, but I put my finger there. I pull it hard; it's a straightforward mechanism it snaps right off it will not break you snap it back this is a nice improvement considering Icon typically has had a little bit of a wonky side pot system on their previous helmets.
To remove this shield, you'd pull both pods off; you over-rotate it. It slides right off, very, very simple. The other things shield related if we pop it down towards the bottom there, you'll see a positive snap at the bottom that allows you to lock in a rock-solid gasket that's move all the way around this I-port.
It's going to keep you dry if you have any riding in the rain, but also ahead checks at speed it won't whistle.
It's going to keep air out of there, and again you can seal everything together. Not a spring-loaded mechanism, but that snap at the bottom gets it done.
If I turn the helmet on its side like this, walk through the guts' beginnings, but I want to home in on one thing in particular. this is another one of my grapes with this helmet, again something that Icon should know better.
They could have improved, while this helmet has speaker cutaways on the inside to allow you to mount Bluetooth speakers, it also has this flat area for a sticky mount of a Bluetooth comm unit device.
What it has done here is they've simplified the way that this neckroll comes together, but in doing that, they've eliminated the ability to do a clamp mount system.
This simplification cleaning up the line created a bit of a barrier. So to get this cheek pad out what I'm going to show you here is there snaps on the inside and a bit of velcro, it comes right down.
You rotate it like that, and then you'll notice it snaps out like that. This piece is while it's very simple creates that seamless line, this piece is what gets in the way.
Everything about this is consistent with icons with what icons done before.
What works very well is wicking, antimicrobial, it's the hydro dry premium liner, but if you put a clamp mounted comm unit, you're going to have to take some utility shears and cut out some notches.
I hate it when people have to modify any plastics on their helmet to get it to work.
Notice this skirt is fully removable as well, I talked about the actuator here for your front vent at your chin. It's easy to find with a gloved hand, and you have plenty of clearance, so no issues there even on along to a narrow helmet.
So cheek pad number two, pull it out this way it slides through then I snap it away and then I get into my comfort liner which is two snaps along the back just pretty standard even for pro-level helmets at this stage of the game.
What I already started doing it in front of the connection points on my comfort liner. So notice, you do have big pass-throughs for your ventilation scheme, it is not as a premium of a comfort liner as we'd see in something like the airframe pro, but you're also not spending over $400.
Remember, graphics are just over $300, and this guy's start base level for your solids really around that $250 mark.
Again, we already talked about hydro dry, simply won't get funky on you easy to clean smooth to work with.
If I rotate this up, you see the big grooves for all the ventilation, allowing it to work its way in around your head, wick heat away, wick sweat away, allow it to exit seamlessly outside the back of the helmet. Even at speed, you're going to notice the profile.
Greate sports commuter helmet, great sport helmet can stretch it to the track, DOY, and ECE rating, and the thing we haven't talked about yet is a Sun Visor mechanism.
Again it is well-executed, and I love this for this sports commuter. If we look at it, it's going to be an optically correct drop-down Sun Visor. It's cable-actuated on the side.
The mechanism is right there where my thumb is; it's seamless; it works well; it doesn't produce a click. That gives you a headache, and again it's a UV proof as well as scratch-resistant.
So all in you're looking at that step for the airmaster. Remember, the air mata is more of a race-oriented helmet. In the high 100's get it to the track, seamless, small compact.
This helmet punches you in the mouth, punches in the neck scares the moms on your street, that's fine.
It is designed to do that. It's also a little bit more versatile with a drop-down Sun Visor system, and they've traded some weight there, but that's okay. from here, you move into that airframe pro.
Our most prominent grapes we're weight, shell shape, or size. And then that Bluetooth communicator issue, which again might do a little surgery if you want to do the clamp mount.
All in though, we dig it, it's the first iteration for Icon we were a couple of years ago in 2015 we saw them do the airframe pro which blew us away and this steals the right amount of that DNA but won't break your bank account.