Specialist Spotlight: Bell Helmets

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They’re probably one of the best known helmet brands in the world. Here’s what you need to know about the iconic American firm.

Bell helmets

Bell began in 1923, originally known as Bell Auto Parts. Employee Roy Richter started with the company back in 1933 – that very same year he also started racing – his passion for motorcycles being fuelled further by the purchase of his first bike, an Indian Scout, in 1931 just two years prior. In an era where people desired fast cars and a need for speed in the racing scene, after a short stint on the track, he soon realised his skill was actually in the building of race cars and their related products… his cars going on to win many races.

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Fast forward to 1945, Richter made the bold move to sell his car and invest every penny he had into buying his very own Bell Auto Parts store. After losing several close friends to racing accidents, he made the decision to devote his time to crafting safer racing products, this with a specific focus on helmets.

Bell helmets

Ten years later, in 1954, Bell Helmets was born. The original Bell 500 helmet was created by Richter in a garage behind his Bell Auto Parts store. Since then, Bell has led the way in helmet innovation, performance and, most importantly, safety, and it continues to do so today. From Supercross stadiums to the tracks of MotoGP racers, across the globe people trust the quality of Bell helmets.

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Dedicating 60 years to Bell, Richter continued to develop industry-guiding helmets. His pursuit for ultimate helmet safety resulted in many ‘firsts’ for Bell – like the launch of the first full face helmet; the Bell Star; the first full-face off-road helmet, the Moto-3; Nomex liners and more.

Bell’s legacy extended not only to the two-wheel world, but also to auto racing. In 1971, all 33 drivers in the USAC 500-mile race series wore Bell helmets. To this day, Bell outfits racers such as Lewis Hamilton and Charles Leclerc.

Bell has continued driving improvements across all disciplines of cycling, motorcycling and auto racing, all while upholding Richter’s legacy as a boundary breaker and pioneer. Leveraging a team of engineers in Scotts Valley, California, Bell pushes the possibilities of helmet protection, and leverages key technical partners such as MIPS to develop the best helmets possible.

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Bell helmets

What does it cost?

Bell produces a wide range of helmets (Prices in GBP):

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Dirt – MX-9 MIPS (149.99) to Moto-10 Spherical (649.99)

Culture Classics – Scout Air (99.99) to Cruiser Bullitt Carbon (549.99)

Street – Qualifier (79.99) to Race Star Flex (649.99)

Within the Street category is the SRT Modular for 249.99

‘MIPS’

The Bell Star MIPS (Multi-directional Impact Protection System) is the entry-level model of the Bell Star line of motorcycle helmets. It is made using a slip-plane design and a foam EPS liner. The EPS liner is designed to deal with main impact forces while the MIPS helps prevent brain injuries such as concussion by reducing rotational forces.

www.bellhelmets.co.uk

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