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Helmet (Standard)

Giro E2 helmet

  • Giro E2 helmet
  • £99.95

Giro’s E2 is something of a classic in the world of bicycle helmets. The successor to the legendary Exodus (still, we reckon, the best-looking bike helmet ever made), the E2 has lots of fans despite its high price. There aren’t any real changes to the E2 for 2003, just new colours, but we haven’t featured one before so here it is…

The ‘standard’ E2 is now available in silver (seen here) or a carbon effect finish. There’s also a Special Edition version that you can get in Liquid Green (think of a white helmet running into something green and globby at high speed) and a Team Trek factory colour scheme. The SEs are an extra £15 but you do get a funky Giro helmet pod (worth £25) to keep it in.

We’ll get this out of the way first. The E2 is a great helmet, for a whole bunch of reasons. First is the fit. Giro’s Roc Loc 4 system is easy to adjust and holds on to your bonce firmly and comfortably. The first E2 incarnation had the Roc Loc held in with often-troublesome Velcro, but the Roc Loc 4 is rather more permanently attached. Internal Coolmax padding is in all the right places and nowhere else. Giro claim that their Super Fit designs fit 98% of the adult population and they certainly cope well with our weird-shaped bonces.

Second good thing is the ventilation. The E2 packs 24 vents, and the design of the helmet shell means that you’ve effectively got six vented channels running across the top of your head. This keeps things cool, although anyone with hair will find themselves with particularly comedy helmet hair after a couple of hours – it tends to get squished down between the channels and fluffed up inside them. Conversely, those of us with minimal hair need to watch out on sunny days. The huge vent area means that without a bit of sunblock up top you’re liable to end up with an amusing leopard effect on your scalp…

Quick-release buckles make for easy strap adjustment and the peak push-fits in to pivoting mounts in the helmet shell allowing 15degrees of adjustment up and down. The whole thing looks great and while its 10oz weight isn’t spectacular by modern helmet standards, it’s as light as most helmets and certainly light enough.

Verdict: The E2’s a few years old now, but it’s standing the test of time well. Constant tweaks and improvements are keeping it fresh – we’re particularly happy to see the back of the Velcro Roc Loc mounting. The only real drawback to the E2 is the price. It’s cheaper than it used to be, but a whisker shy of a hundred quid is a lot of dough. On pure value for money terms, there are £70 helmets from the competition and indeed Giro themselves look like a better bet. But if you’ve got the money, the E2 is the helmet daddy…

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