There are mid-range helmets, and there are Arai mid-range helmets. The Profile-V is one of the latter, but in most helmet manufacturers’ range it would be right at the top.
Such is Arai’s insistence on safety and quality that this helmet is barely distinguishable from the brand’s more expensive items – at a glance you could mistake it for an RX-7V: The visor and its mechanism are exactly the same (those side pods divide opinion, but they work for me); the overall shape and aerodynamic quality is equally impressive; the double-D strap is pure quality; and the lining is as soft as silk.
There are small differences, though. The Profile-V has two easy-to-operate top vents rather than three (still perfectly adequate, especially since the visor has two vents and there’s the standard chin vent, too), and the exit vets can’t be closed (not sure why you would). The lining is still removable and washable, apart from the very top bit. And pleasantly, it is a bit lighter than the top end lids at claimed 1500g.
The Profile-V has been specifically designed to be less race-oriented and more user-friendly than other Arais, hence the slightly wider opening and smaller chin strip to make it easier to put on and take off. Does it make a difference? Yes it does! I never had a problem with my old Arai until I compared it to this one.
The only bugbear I have with Arai is that the helmets don’t have an internal sun visor. This is because Arai is not happy with the safety of such a system, but for everyday bikers it makes a huge difference to be able to quickly flip the shade up or down. To provide a solution to this, Arai has the Pro Shade system (£99), which is effectively a separate sun visor that sits on top of the standard visor. It’s not as sleek and discreet as an internal sun visor, but it does the job and makes the helmet more versatile. I also have a dark visor for the helmet but that’s reserved for the really sunny days only.
At £379.99 this is not a cheap mid-range helmet, but that really is just where it sits in Arai’s line-up. Most other brands would call this a premium helmet. If you don’t believe me, pop down to your nearest dealer and have a look and feel for yourself – it really is rather good.
Tested by: Mikko Nieminen
For more information on Arai’s Profile V helmet, click HERE.
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