Among Vemar’s clients are MotoGP Repsol Honda rider Andrea Dovizioso, who wore a Vemar helmet this past racing season.
The Italian company Vemar has been in the business of producing and selling motorcycle helmets since 1986. Its tenured history has attracted motorcycle racers at the highest level as both Andrea Dovizioso and Alex De Angelis sported Vemar helmets this past MotoGP season. The technology used in its VSR line we sampled is derived from Vemar’s racing helmets.
The first thing I noticed about the Vemar VSRE Diadem Helmet is that it is cut differently than other full-face motorcycle helmets. The chin guard protrudes farther and the faceshield slants back at a greater angle. The aerodynamic design aims at reducing buffeting of the head. The shell is also much smaller than my Shoei or Icon helmets and the internal shape is slightly oval.
At first the fit feels slightly foreign. It sits high on the head, the cheek pads are cut high, and the bottom is cut short and barely covers my chin. There’s not much space between the lower lip of the helmet and my chin, so the bottom of my chin and neck got cold several times. There is a padded wind deflector and a small breath deflector mounted on the chin guard, but the slightly wider design of the lower portion of the helmet doesn’t seal out the turbulent air around the base of the helmet and allows wind noise in.
One of the helmet’s strong points is its ventilation. It has a ‘Vemar Klima’ adjustable full ventilation system which translates to lots of vents that are easy to operate. There’s one V-shaped intake vent in the middle of the chin guard that opens easily by pushing the button down. Another vent is located on the top of the forehead that pushes back to open. Two scoops are integrated into the top of the helmet and open up by pulling back small plastic tabs on the back of the helmet. An exhaust vent is drilled into each side of the chin guard and is camouflaged by a smoke-colored plastic cover. The covers are closed in front and open in back so that it pulls air out and assists the no-fog shield from steaming up.
The Vemar Diadem Helmet has a slightly different shape as its chin guard protrudes farther and the faceshield slants back at a greater angle than most lids.
Speaking of the clear shield, it’s 2.2mm-thick and has been treated to resist scratches and fogging. It did an admirable job of keeping my line of sight clear even on a foggy, rainy 40-degree morning. A large visor area provides great road visibility. The tab to lift up the shield is farther left than on other lids and takes a firm push to open. The shields are bolted on, so switching from a clear to a tinted visor means a small hex key is required. Vemar states that they used a bolt so that it ‘remains on the helmet in case of a crash,’ but the system isn’t as convenient as some of its competitors.
The Vemar Diadem cinches tight via a D-ring closure system. The padded chin strap is comfy and comes with an easy-to-use snap for the extra strap. The helmet has a thin inner liner that doesn’t offer much padding from the thick Styrofoam it covers, but the cheek pads are nicely padded. Overall, the helmet’s comfort level is average.
The product description of the helmet states that the inner liner and cheek pads are removable and washable, but I’ll be damned if I could get them out. The front and the back of the liner comes unsnapped, but it’s held into place by the cheek pads that are glued onto the liner.
The Diadem’s exterior shell is a tri-compound concoction of carbon fiber, aramidic and fiberglass whose construction meets DOT & EC certifications. It’s fairly lightweight, as a medium VSREV helmet weighs in at a claimed 3.2 lbs. Vemar backs up its helmet with a five-year warranty from manufacturing date.
The Vemar helmet has great ventilation, doesn’t fog easily, and the padded chin strap is a bonus. It fits a little strange for my head shape, but I have a large skull and a prominent forehead. It allows a bit of ambient noise in, and the bolted-down visor isn’t the most convenient to use, but it’s lightweight, meets high safety standards and has sharp styling. Better yet, it rings in for a lot less than its competitors, especially at the Motorcycle Superstore, who dropped its price down from its $350 MSRP to $199. Just in time for Christmas.