Axor & Shrio Helmet Review
Model Tested: Axor Street Beyond; Shiro SH 600 BRNO
Rule the road but first wear the crown, your helmet is your most important gear
This is probably the first instance that we have a product review on MotorBeam except for tyres. Vega already had the brand Axor in the market but those were the budget helmets and this time they have relaunched the brand with better and higher safety helmets. Not only has Vega brought Axor back but introduced a new brand Shiro. Both these helmet brands aren’t made in India but instead imported. We have had the helmets for two months now and have been using them for regular riding too.
Let’s start with Axor. However this review is about the Axor Street Beyond, we earlier received a different model, the Axor Street Octane in KTM orange colour. But that helmet had some quality issues as it was first of the lot. The chin vent cover, for instance, came off as I went past 150 km/hr. And then the dual visor wouldn’t work as expected. It was returned and Vega sent us a new helmet, the Axor Street Beyond. I was amused to see that the model was just the same and the name differed only for the design graphics. The shell structure design, the visor and even the internal padding, everything was exactly the same.
The shell design of the Axor Street is a lot similar to the regular helmets, however, it has the edges and curves for a more aerodynamic feel. It also gets a rubber lip at the rear. There are 5 vents in total, a chin vent, 2 vents over the forehead and two at the back with a single slide cover. The design of the visor is very precise and it goes very well with the shell design. The helmet has a 2 layer internal padding. The one closer to the face is thin yet soft and cushiony, while the second layer is of hard foam which then sticks to the shell. The helmet has a normal fit and is strapped with regular slide-in strap.
The helmet feels a little airy on the inside. There is enough space to slide your spectacles in. Even with the approx weight of 1400 grams, the helmet feels light. It holds the cheeks and the top of the head very well. Although it is designed for high speeds, it feels the best only till 150 km/hr post that the helmet tries to have a lift and isn’t really comfortable. However, it gets a dual visor and the internal visor has a mirror finish to it. Only to be used in daytime, the combination of having a dual visor eliminates the need for extra sunglasses and suits very well too.
Everything looks a lot better from inside of a motorcycle helmet
Second up is the Shiro SH 600. At the first look itself, the Shrio feels a lot more premium. However the shell design is just oval and very simple, it feels a lot more sturdy and safe. It has similar 5 vents as the Axor but looks neater. It clearly has more surface area and feels a lot bigger too. This is the BRNO model which gets a matte black + orange treatment. There’s a lot more black than orange and a few shades of grey too. It gets a similar dual-layer internal padding with the removable face padding to be thicker and more comfortable.
The Shiro also gets a dual visor, the internal visor, however, is a shadow black shade and it feels more usable throughout the day. The Shiro has a better snug fit keeping it in place most of the times even at high speeds. The personal threshold for this helmet was about 190 km/hr and it was on the Ducati Multistrada which had a windshield too. There was a jittery feel but the helmet did the job really well. I also used this helmet for this year’s Ladakh trip and the only thing to bug me was the weight. The Shiro actually felt a little heavy to the neck and a huge helmet overall. To mention it again, it actually felt safer. With the purchase of a Shiro helmet, you also get coin-sized blood group stickers.
Both the helmets were with me for about two months, dedicating approximately one month to each and I did feel that newer helmets are getting better. I have been using LS2 and SOL for the last 4 years, the quality was almost the same, actually better. The design and overall feel has improved and it feels much safer. But the only thing is that these helmets are good for the streets but not meant for the track. They do miss out on a D-Ring strap configuration which would have made it much more safer. Priced just below Rs. 5000/- and with the ECER-II and DOT ratings, the safety is not jeopardized, making these helmets a good pick for the current market.