Top Shoei motorcycle helmets

Shoei are one of the world’s top motorcycle helmet manufacturers, here are some of their most popular helmets

Riding a Ducati Monster in a Shoei helmet

by Jim Blackstock |

Like their Japanese counterpart, Arai, Shoei are one of the longest-running helmet manufacturers in the world. They made their first protective helmet in 1959 and have continued to innovate and develop in the 60-odd years they’ve been involved in motorcycling.

Today, each Shoei helmet is hand-assembled and the company have recently launched their first helmet to be approved under the new testing standard, ECE22.06.

Related: Best sport bike helmets

This new standard now includes assessment of potential rotational injuries to the wearer rather than the historic more-linear impacts, with rotational injuries identified as a major contributor to brain injury.

The company produces a range of helmets in different styles depending on the bike you ride and the type of riding you do.

Related: Top Arai motorbike helmets

Unlike Arai, some Shoei helmets feature drop-down sun visors though these tend to be the more touring-focused. The sportier examples do not but there are options for riders who want some protection from the sun’s rays, such as a Transitions automatically dimming visor.

Here is a selection of Shoei’s most popular helmets.

Shoei Ryd

Editoru2019s Pick - Weu2019ve tested this product and would spend our own money on it
Shoei Ryd
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The Ryd is Shoeiu2019s entry-level full-face helmet but its price belies its performance. I personally have been using this helmet for the past two years and it is excellent u2013 itu2019s my go-to lid. Itu2019s light on features but heavy on the basics; a composite-fibre shell in four shell sizes and it doesnu2019t have a drop-down sun visor, so it is compact and light.

The lining is removable and washable and ventilation, though looking basic, is actually very effective, from the chin vent and the double brow vents. No sun visor means a tinted or Transitions if you want some sun protection but it’s incredibly comfortable and gets five SHARP stars for safety.

SHARP rating: 5/5

Shoei NXR2

Shoei NXR2

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The NXR2 is Shoeiu2019s first helmet to meet the new ECE22.06 standards, which includes rotational testing. It builds on the original NXR model to achieve a low weight thanks to the shell formed in multi-composite fibre that is paired with an EPS liner in multiple densities for comfort as well as shock-absorbing characteristics.

The shell comes in four sizes to ensure a perfect fit for all riders and it also uses Shoei’s quick-release cheek-pad system for ease of removal in an emergency. It has air inlet vents at the chin, forehead and either side of the top of the head with an exhaust vent in the rear, formed in the aerodynamic spoiler.

SHARP rating: N/A (NXR 4/5)

Shoei GT-Air II

Shoei GT-Air II
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The GT-Air II is Shoeiu2019s high-end sports-touring helmet, designed for more upright bikes where the vision is directly out of the visor, as opposed to slightly up as found in a sportsbike tuck. The shell is slightly larger than say a RYD as it features a handy drop-down sun visor and although this makes the helmet larger and heavier, it is not ungainly.

This is another helmet I have used extensively and found it to be quiet and comfortable. There is a chin vent and a forehead one with exhaust vents at the rear though the visor can either be locked closed or left to allow some additional air in as well. It is also prepared for the SENA SRL2 integrated intercom system which fits seamlessly.

SHARP Rating: N/A

Shoei X-Spirit 3

Shoei X-Spirit 3

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The X-Spirit 3 is Shoeiu2019s flagship sports helmet, with technology derived from its success on the racetracks of the world, including in MotoGP. It is designed specifically for the forward-bent u2018racing tucku2019 with aerodynamics to keep it stable at high speed, including a rear spoiler that integrates with racing-leather rear humps.

The interior is adjustable to get the right fit and angle for individual riders and it has six air intakes, including at the chin, brow and forehead as well as channels to push air towards the cheeks. It features posts for visor tear-offs for quick improvements to vision and a double lock mechanism to prevent it from opening by mistake.

SHARP rating: 5/5

Shoei Neotec 2

Shoei Neotec 2
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The Neotec 2 is Shoeiu2019s premium flip-front touring helmet and uses the brandu2019s experience and technology to create a helmet that offers the comfort and quietness of a full-face with the convenience of a flip. The shell comes in three sizes to allow the right fit for every rider and the flip-up chin bar has a locking mechanism to allow the Neotec to be dual P/J homologated, meaning it can be ridden with the chin-bar raised.

The interior can be removed for washing and there are vents at the chin and forehead for when the chin-bar is closed. It features a drop-down sun visor and is also ready to accept the Sena SRL2 integrated intercom system for communications with a smartphone, sat nav or other riders.

SHARP Rating: 4/5

Shoei Glamster

Shoei Glamster

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No helmet range is complete without a retro-inspired model and this is Shoeiu2019s, an homage to the helmets of yesteryear yet featuring the most modern of safety technologies. Its classic rounded design features a huge visor aperture in the composite shell with a double D-ring fastening for the perfect fit every time.

The interior centre pad and cheek pads are removable and three different sizes of cheek pads are available for the perfect fit. The huge visor is ready for the – included – Pinlock anti-fog insert and is fitted with a metal fastening.

SHARP Rating: N/A

Shoei Hornet ADV

Shoei Hornet ADV
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The Hornet is Shoeiu2019s off-road adventure helmet and like the rest of the range, features a shell formed in composite fibre with a multi-density liner for comfort and protection. The shell is available in four sizes and there are also four sizes of cheek pads to ensure the perfect fit for all conditions and riders.

The large visor is shaped to allow maximum airflow to the face, from the vents mounted at the front including the chin and forehead. The familiar adventure-style peak is removable and the helmet uses a double D-ring fastening for security.

SHARP Rating: N/A

Shoei VFX-WR

Shoei VFX-WR

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This is Shoeiu2019s most extreme off-road helmet though it is still certified to ECE22.05, so itu2019s legal to use on the road. Designed primarily for motocross and enduro racing, it has no visor, as goggles are intended to be used with it.

It uses the familiar composite shell and multi-density liner as well as Shoei’s Motion Energy Distribution System (MEDS) which helps to dissipate forces that could cause rotational injuries to the brain. Airflow is excellent thanks to the open front but there are also multiple vents to admit as well as remove air through the helmet.

SHARP Rating: N/A

Shoei J-Cruise 2

Shoei J-Cruise 2
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Derived from full-face helmets, the J-Cruise 2 is Shoeiu2019s urban u2018jetu2019-style helmet. It features a large open-face visor with a secondary drop-down sun visor and there is an optional Pinlock anti-fog insert available if necessary.

The helmet fastens with a ratchet buckle and is ready for the Sena SRL2 intercom system. If the airflow from the open-face design is not enough, there are three vents on the top of the helmet to admit even more cooling air.

SHARP rating: N/A

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