The choices for a helmet are numerous these days, and the common rule of thumb is to stick with what you know. There are Shoei guys, Arai guys and Bell Guys; but you don’t run into many Vemar
guys. It's not the first name that comes to mind when thinking of a lid, and that is perhaps the biggest hurdle the Italian manufacturer has to overcome in the U.S. market. With it’s newly released VRX9 off-road helmet, Vemar should attract a whole new legion of fans.
The Vemar VRX9 Off-Road Helmet
is a top-of-the-mark offering that incorporates all of the features expected in a helmet that begins at $375 for paintable versions and $495 with graphics. Vemar even has a glow in the dark version, dubbed Night Vision, that will set you back $550. It is DOT approved, and meets ECE 22.05 standards. There is no Snell rating. We will let you decide whether or not that is important to you, as there has been much debate about which testing standard is better. Personally, I have no qualms about wearing a helmet with an ECE 22.05 rating.
The first thing you notice about the VRX9 is the unbelievably light weight achieved by its carbon fiber/Kevlar/fiberglass blend shell. A size medium tips the scales at just 2.7 pounds; that’s ¾ of a pound less than some of the more popular high-end helmets.
Inside a double density high impact EPS shell handles the dispersion of energy in an impact. Covering the EPs foam are a removable and washable liners and check pads as in most helmets these days. The liner is manufactured from a technical fiber that is treated against odor, fungus and bacteria. This makes for a cleaner environment for your scalp.
Vemar claims the VRX9 is one of the most vented off-road helmets on the market with its exclusive “Vemar Klima” ventilations system. We counted no less than 17 ports to channel air through the shell for cooling.
After several months of testing the VRX9
, I have to say I’m impressed with this helmet. The mid-oval shape fit my head nicely, and the interior is plush yet not bulky. The ventilation does work well, and if you ride in frigid temps this could be an issue as the air readily moves though the lid.
The feather-light feel has won me over, but I was always slightly skeptical of the level of protection it afforded. That was until a week ago when I had a massive crash at our 2013 2-Stoke 250 Shootout. My head contacted with the front brake caliper of the 2013 Beta 250 RR with enough force to crack the paint and outer shell of the Vemar. My cranium suffered no ill effects despite the damage to the VRX9, and I wish I could say the same for the rest of my body.
The Vemar VRX9 is an excellent choice for those looking for a top-of-the-line helmet. Don’t be put off by the lack of notoriety; try one on and give it a fair shake. You might be surprised and end up being a Vemar fan. As for me, I’m will be looking to replace my damaged VRX9 with a fresh one, perhaps in the super cool glow in the dark Night Vision now that the temps are rising and night time trail rides are beckoning.
The Vemar VRX9 Helmet
is availableat Motorcycle Superstore