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We test Giro's mountain bike specific Montaro cycling helmet that is practically bristling with safety technology and functional features

giro montara mips bike helmet matte black galaxy front
Overall Score
Packed with details such as goggle retention and POV camera mount
All these features add up to extra weight

Designed for big mountain adventure, Giro's Montaro helmet is confidence inspiring from the moment you put it on and tighten its easy-to-use retention system.

All it takes is a twist of the small central wheel at the back of the helmet to tension the padded retention band that holds the helmet in place on your head with even pressure around the whole circumference of the helmet.

Joined to this band is the plastic MIPS matrix, a plastic sheet that lightly grips your head, with holes cut to match the ventilation holes of the rest of the helmet.

The principle of this MIPS system (Multi-Directional Impact System) is that is reduces the rotation forces of the more typical angular impacts on your head that you experience in bike accidents.

This extra crash protection adds to the Montaro's more conventional but we''-proven polycarbonate shell with an in-moulded EPS foam liner and Giro's Roll-Cage reinforcement.

The Montaro is not as light or well ventilated as some of Giro's road helmets but these compromises are due to extra protection. That said, the Montaro's 16 vents are more than adequate, helped by internal channelling which takes airflow from the front across the top and sides of your head to the rear of the helmet.

Comfort is further improved with excellent sweat-absorbing foam padding, especially around your forehead and a simple, effective chin strap which just works, putting the straps comfortably where they need to be.

Downhill mountain bikers will love the goggle integration features, which include a gulley around the back of the helmet with rubber vent surrounds to keep the strap in place.

On the front of the helmet is a fit-for-purpose visor, which is hinged at the sides for height adjustment, and you even get a Go-Pro-ready mount, which cleverly inserts into the top vent of the helmet but can be removed if not needed.

Finally, the Montaro's looks are spot on, with the matt black shell set off by the green, flecked EPS liner, which shows around the rim and at the back. Fear not though - if this colourway is not to your liking there are seven others, including an all-black one.





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