We've come a long ways since the days when helmets looked like styrofoam salad bowls, and probably provided about as much impact protection. Improved construction techniques, more form fitting designs, plus niceties like extended rear coverage and refined retention systems all make today's trail / all-mountain helmets better than ever. Giro's newest addition to the field is the Montaro MIPS, which sits in the top tier of the company's mountain bike helmet line.
Giro Montaro MIPS Details
• 16 vents
• MIPS liner
• Eight color choices
• CE and CPSC certified
• Sizes: S, M, L
• Weight: 375 grams (actual, size M
• MSRP: $150.00 USD
The Montaro ticks all the boxes when it comes to the features you'd expect to find in a high-end helmet, including a ratcheting rear dial to fine tune the fit, a five position visor, rubberized vents at the rear to keep goggle straps securely in place, and a removable POV camera / light mount.
The helmet is also equipped with MIPS (Multi-directional Impact Protection System), a thin plastic liner that sits between a rider's head and the inner portion of the helmet. In the event of a crash, the liner is designed to allow the helmet to slide along it, a movement that's claimed to reduce the amount of rotational energy that reaches the brain. As far as the actual construction of the Montaro goes, a polycarbonate, in-mold shell is formed around an EPS liner with Giro's Roll-Cage reinforcement, an internal skeleton that's used to add extra strength to the finished product.
Available in eight color schemes, ranging from the blaze orange to matte black, the Montaro retails for $150 USD. Performance
The Montaro is one of those helmets you can put on at the beginning of a ride and forget about until you return home, dirty, tired, and happy. A quick twist of the retention dial is all it takes to keep it securely in place, and after that you can focus on more important things, like making it to the top of that nasty climb without stopping to lose your lunch in the bushes.
When it comes to overall fit, the Montaro sat a little higher on my head than a Specialized Ambush or Troy Lee A1 – those two helmets feel slightly 'deeper' - but there wasn't any undue movement, and the Montaro quickly became my go-to helmet on warm days thanks to its well ventilated design. The thin brow pad does an excellent job of managing moisture, and it was only on the hottest of days that it became saturated enough to allow sweat to drip down my face.
Riders who wear sunglasses will find that the shell of the helmet and its retention system are situated high enough above the ears to avoid interfering with sunglasses arms, and goggle wearers will appreciate the wide range of the visor, along with the grippy vents on the back that worked well to keep goggle straps from slipping.
The only real issue I had, and it's a minor one at that, was with the visor. The lack of a center guide and its flexible plastic construction means that one side can end up in a different position than the other. A crooked visor doesn't affect the performance in any way, but it can cause some strange looks out on the trail, and make people ask if you'd had a recent run-in with a tree. Riding alone is the easiest solution, but raising or lowering the visor by grabbing the center rather than one side is the second best way to make sure you don't inadvertently commit a fashion faux pas. Pinkbike's Take
|The Montaro is a welcome addition to Giro's helmet line, a comfortable, good looking, and full-featured offering that doesn't skimp when it comes to safety. - Mike Kazimer|
Visit the high-res gallery for more images.
I think the photo attached with the rider looks like the helmet is sitting too high. The yeti gap is what, two fingers wide? Is that how this helmet naturally sits, or is it just I'll fitted, or am I just seeing things?
Good for giro to pick up MIPS as well though. MIPS or a similar variant will be in my next helmet tho.
You would have to glue the mips liner to your head to make it function. Your hair has a greater effect than mips.
Still doing research and testing.
The Kali octopus tentacles have had better testi ng results so far.
Lastly, 6D makes sense, but when I asked specific questions they just said "we have top athletes, so obviously we are the best" and then he called me an a*shole.... So there's that. Does the larger thickness of the 6D create stronger leverage that negates the effect of the rubber bands inside?
Interesting that so many people are adapting MIPS and MIPS type technology in their head protection... in every industry.
Do you have your own test lab?
I just wish I had data from 6D. No plans on buying one just for testing.
MIPS is bullshit
6D thinks you're an a*shole
You do research
Safety is important to you
You do research
MIPS kinda works but they might be in it for a bunch of profit
Perhaps you have a different point to make, and it seems I took the bait. Toodle loo,
Thanks to giro and MIPS for making products to protect my dome while I recreate doing dangerous activities!
So you could do all the testing in the world, it would be hard to take at face value.
Side note MIPS is not bullshit. LOL!
The MIPS helmets have lower rotational acceleration and velocity in general over the non MIPS helmets.
There are 2 helmets in the group that are the same helmet MIPS and non-MIPS and you can see a nice difference in those.
Numbers don't bullshit. Where are your numbers?
not sure if bad design or just to enduro
It would be neat to see quantitive analysis in the "performance" subsections for things that truly matter (helmets).
We need to see the data just like you see on IIHS for cars. This would force manufacturers to up their game and/or lower prices. If in testing the numbers showed that a $250 helmet did no better than a $100 helmet, it's going to be hard to maintain sales at that price point.
Pass or fail tests are pretty much useless.
It's like FL-1 standards for lights. It's the standards but companies are not REQUIRED to go by them. They should be. The better companies go by them. But when it's not convenient people will avoid it. So you might see on the shelf a $39 light saying it's got 150 lumens next to a $59 light than says it's got 150 lumens. You go... oh man..I'll take the cheaper one. But what you're not looking at is that the expensive one tested to FL-1 Standards and is ACTUALLY 150 lumens. Meanwhile the cheap one just did their own internal testing which could just be the engineer going.. yeah it's 150 lumens. But if tested again FL-1 it might 80 Lumens... same goes for battery life. Sure it's still on after 3 hours but can you use it?
Point 2. $250 vs. $100 helmet. It's not always completely about safety. If they're close on safety that's a good thing. That means the technology and the safety is moving completely through company product lines. The difference in pricing is partially due to things like Mips and non MIPS models... but often times the larger chunks come from features. Better fit systems. Nicer finish. Higher cost of manufacturing and lower numbers. ETc.
Point 3. Agree 100% about the pass/fail.
For example, say the $250 helmet is slightly better vented, but scored worse than the $100 one.
Now we would be able to make an informed choice, is the ventilation and slightly lower score worth $150 to me.
It's like one of the other comments complaining that it costs more in the UK.... well... it has to be shipped there... and the exchange rate is a moving target... etc.
But yes. Information is always good. It just has to be delivered in a way that doesn't overwhelm the end user/purchaser. So making it available is great but slamming everything on the box is probably not the best idea. LOL!
Sorry, couldn't resist a little US gun humor.
It rattles a bunch, other day mine popped off while I was riding. Footage is all shaky and the GoPro knock is made even worse. Then if you ride the helmet with the mount on and no GoPro is rattles and is just annoying. It's lame. I emailed Giro and they didn't have any answers for me other than 'oh interesting, sorry to hear that'. I mean for $300 retail would kinda like it function properly.
I have heard that Giro is aware of the issue (thus why you don't see it in any reviews, which is a bit shady) and supposedly there is a new mount in the works.
But if there is a problem with it, I think it is lame to not talk about it in a review.
@mikekazimer please give a statement about the pov camera / light mount. As for me, my next helmet needs to have a pov camera / LIGHT mount, so I am curious which helmets work or not.
I contacted Amy at Giro about it and she sent me a mount from a Giro Range snow helmet which isn't compatible at all. After arguing with me that it should fit she finally forwarded my inquiry/complaint to their product management group who then completely ignored any of my inquiries. Terrible customer service!
As a long time Giro fan I've now returned the Montaro and bought a Smith Forefront (which has a proper light/camera mount).
I completely get the fact that i have to pay a premium for mips, but come on, that's a lot of money for the materials and technology involved.
I also disagree with the author that "helmets have come a long way". No they haven't, they've just started to look a little better, while materials are more or less the same.
That said, if it really improves on the feature's venting (my only gripe), this should be a fine helmet.
It is also about 70° cooler than the Feature to ride in...
MSRP on the feature is $95. That's only 2/3 the price of the montaro.
If you think about the number of hours you spend in a helmet, its really not expensiv to get something good.
It also is not conducive to mounting lights due to the vent layout.
Overall its super comfortable, light, ventilates well and is highly visible.
Giro missed heaps of sales in this country by not selling their Feature helmet.
**** you Giro.
You can also find generalized information on how it's used by Giro on their site here: www.giro.com/us_en/mips
I personally will never own another helmet without some version of this technology in it if I can avoid it. I've got it in my Super 2R. I'm picking up a new slow lid with MIPS. And Flex in the moto helmet.
If you've ever gotten a concussion purely from rotation... not impact... you'll understand it's importance. Versions of this technology will be standard at some point very soon.
I totally agree! I do mostly xc riding with lots of climbing and still really want a full face.
My old helmet was a nice light Giro that rode high on my head (similar to above photos.) Last winter I went over the bars hopping a log at 4mph and hit the side of my head on the log. The helmet helpfully slid away from the side impact and my temple experienced the full force of the strike.
Huge bump, concussion, out of work for 3 days, etc, etc. The damage from a low speed fall was a wake up for sure.
If I'd been wearing a Bell Super2R with the face guard the side of my head would have been protected. BUT that helmet doesn't have anything close to adequate ventilation for me. Yeah the facebar is removable but I was riding in a flat section when I fell.
After the accident I realized how important it is to get the right helmet. I tried on every helmet I could and got the one that fit best which for me was the poc trabec race. I really wanted a full face but it just can't work for my xc style riding. I took my family to the same stores for an excruciating full afternoon of helmet fitting. Kids and wife all ended up strongly preferring the TLD (which was too small for me so not a candidate.)
I can't wait for a better ventilated full face. I appreciate how nuanced safety gear can be but disappointed that viable full face is taking so long to develop.
Bell/Giro do fit differently. Just like POC or any other brand. Gotta try that bad boy on.
I believe full face for xc will happen and it can't come too soon for me.
Much better stuff out there.