Giro's new Tyrant helmet is aimed at riders who tend to push things to the limit, whether that's at the dirt jumps or out on a trail ride. “Style over speed” is supposed to be the marketing tag line, but that doesn't really resonate with me – after all, why not be fast and stylish? I do understand the sentiment, though; the Tyrant wasn't made for XC racers where ventilation and lightweight are the top priorities, and it's not for enduro racers who need DH-certified full face helmets.
Instead, it's for anyone who wants a little extra protection just in case that whip doesn't come back around in time, or a two-wheeled drift turns into a full body drift right off the trail.
Giro Tyrant Details
• Roc-Loc Air DH fit system
• MIPS Spherical
• Adjustable visor
• Weight: 623 grams (medium)
• 5 color options
• Sizes: S, M, L
• CPSC, CE, and AS/NZS certified
• MSRP: $150 USD
The Tyrant has a clean and simple look to it, with a silhouette that was obviously inspired by the classic 70s era skate / BMX helmet profile. But while the look may have a throwback vibe to it, the Tyrant is equipped with a very modern safety feature in the form of MIPS Spherical.
First used in Giro's Avance ski helmet, and also seen in the Bell Super DH, MIPS Spherical uses two separate layers of foam connected by elastomers, which allow the two layers to move independently. The idea is that during a crash the outer layer is able to rotate enough to help dissipate a portion of the impact force, reducing the amount of stress that reaches the brain. EPS (expanded polystyrene) foam is used for that outer layer in order to deal with high speed impacts, while softer EPP (expanded polypropylene) foam sits closer to the rider's head to help with slower speed impacts
The fit can be fine tuned using Giro's Roc Loc DH retention system.
There are a total of fourteen vents, including the ones over each ear, along with internal channeling to help direct the air towards the back of the helmet. Giro's Roc Loc DH retention system is used to adjust the fit via a ratcheting, rubberized dial, and there are also multiple height positions to adjust where that system sits against the back of the head. The visor is adjustable too, and there are two different cheek pad thicknesses included with each helmet for further customization.
There are a total of five different color options – three of them are some shade of grey or black, along with a fluorescent yellow Citron, and a greenish Spruce colorway. Available in sizes S, M, and L, the Tyrant retails for $150 USD. Ride Impressions
I'll often wear Giro's Switchblade helmet
without the chinbar in the winter time due to the extra warmth it provides, but when summer rolls around it gets pushed to the back of the shelf in favor of lighter and airier options. With the Tyrant, I've taken it on multiple rides where the temperatures were in the high 70s (26° C) and haven't felt like I was getting too
overheated. Yes, it is noticeably warmer than a typical half shell, but the fit and vent position around the ears makes it feel less stifling than the Switchblade, giving it a much wider range of usable temperatures.
The overall fit was snug and comfortable on my relatively oval-shaped head - the dial at the back of the helmet is easy to reach, and once I had everything adjusted I rarely needed to touch it. The Tyrant weighs a couple hundred grams more than a typical half shell, but that weight is well dispersed. It's not overly top heavy, and it didn't feel like my head was getting pulled downward at all in steeper terrain. If you really shake your head you can feel the two foam layers moving independently, but I didn't notice that out on the trail. Granted, I typically wore goggles on the descents, which helps cinch everything down even further.
On the topic of eyewear, there's no place to easily stash sunglasses if you're looking for a place to put them while climbing - the Tyrant is best suited to goggle usage anyways. One thing I did occasionally notice was the sound of the two foam layers rubbing on each other. It didn't bother me, and it was really only audible while climbing, but it's worth a mention.
Good ventilation considering the amount of coverage+
MIPS Spherical technology+
Comfortable, secure fit
Heavier & warmer than a 'regular' half shell-
You can occasionally hear the two foam liners rubbing together-
No spot for sunglasses