Top 5 Best Modular Helmets: The Best of Both Worlds

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On those scorching rides through sun-soaked landscapes, the desire to catch a breath of fresh air or take a quick sip is a universal longing. We all crave that refreshing breeze, but safety remains paramount. And that’s where the beauty of a modular helmet comes into play—it strikes a delicate balance, offering the protection of a full-face shield while embracing the breathability reminiscent of an open-face design.

And the versatility of a modular helmet extends beyond mere airflow. The ability to communicate easily with a riding partner at a stoplight adds a layer of camaraderie to the journey. Sure, investing in a top-notch motorcycle communication system is an option, but let’s be honest—not everyone has one. With a modular helmet, I find myself relishing the best of both worlds. It’s a practical choice that caters to the need for protection, breathability, and the spontaneous joy of connection on the open road.

A swift flip of the face shield and chin bar, and you effortlessly transition into the liberating feel of an open-face experience—a joy I’ve relished in my nearly 50 years of adventure riding. And when it comes to the best modular helmets, trust me, I know:

Helmet ModelCategoryShell SizesCheck & Shop Now
AGV SportmodularBest Overall3: XS-SM, MD-LG, XL-3XLRevZilla | Amazon
Sedici Sistema II HorizonBest Entry Level2: XS-M, L-2XLRevZilla | CycleGear
HJC i90Best Budget-Friendly3: XS-L, XL XXL, 3XLRevZilla | Amazon
Shoei Neotec 3Best Premium3: XS-M, L, XL-XXL RevZilla | Amazon
Scorpion EXO-AT960Most Versatile3: XS-M, L, XL-XXLRevZilla | Amazon

More on these in just a moment, but before I do, allow me to explain the criteria that led me to these selections.

How to Choose a Modular Helmet You’ll Love

Right hand about to flip up the HJC RPHA 90S Carbon helmet. As a modular helmet, it allows you to effortlessly open and close the chinbar. Includes an internal sun visor for added convenience.
Right hand about to flip up the HJC RPHA 90S Carbon helmet. As a modular helmet, it allows you to effortlessly open and close the chinbar. Includes an internal sun visor for added convenience.

Selecting the right modular helmet revolves around its ingenious hinge system, effortlessly transforming it from full-face security to the freedom of an open-face design with a simple touch. Take my Nolan N100-5, for example—it’s a breeze to put on and take off without the hassle of removing glasses every time. The EXO-AT960 follows suit, ensuring a seamless experience. But, nuances in shape, like my Klim TK1200, can present challenges.

These variations introduce new considerations, and so, here is what matters the most:

  • Protective Essence: The outer skin isn’t just a shell—it’s the essence of protection, weight, and durability. My inclination is towards polycarbonates for their affordability, while carbon fiber emerges as the prime choice for a lightweight yet robust design.
  • Trust in Rigorous Standards: Claims abound, but I rely on the stringent SNELL, DOT, ECE, SHARP, or FIM certifications to gauge a helmet’s safety in real-world scenarios. It’s the objective measure needed for peace of mind on the road.
  • Interior Comfort and Impact Protection: The inner shell’s lining is a pivotal comfort element. Opt for advanced materials with antimicrobial properties. Trust me; a hygienic and comfortable helmet enhances the riding experience.
  • Beyond Buckles: The trusty double D-ring mechanism, time-tested and secure, is my go-to choice for keeping the helmet in place. While other options exist, including the micro-metric ratchets, none match the tensile strength of the Double D-rings.
  • Air Flow and Breathability: Innovative airflow systems make cooling off a breeze in modular helmets. The ability to flip up the lid adds an extra layer of convenience during rides.
  • Balancing Ventilation and Serenity: A month-long trial reveals the helmet’s noise level—a critical consideration for moto-vloggers. The right modern helmet strikes a balance between ventilation and minimal wind noise.
  • Weighing the Yoke: While the weight might vary with location, the mass remains constant. Ensure you’re comfortable with your helmet’s weight, especially with the added features of modular constructions. Aim for a weight not exceeding 4.0 pounds!
  • A Perfect Fit: The availability of multiple shell sizes in any helmet model eliminates the risk of ending up with a fit that’s either too loose or too tight. A snug fit without pressure points is crucial for enjoying extended hours in the saddle. Personally, I wouldn’t consider any model that offers less than two shell sizes.
  • Expressing Personality: My helmet is a reflection of my personality. Find one that resonates with your style, communicates your mood, and complements your rider identity.
  • Beyond Looks: Comfort is non-negotiable. No matter how stylish a helmet is, it must fit snugly. Keep searching until you find the perfect match for your head and face shape.
  • Helmets 2.0: Helmets now offer more than just protection. Look for drop-down sun visors, Bluetooth connectivity, and ports for attaching microphones and cameras—a tech-savvy rider’s delight.

Now, let’s delve into a detailed review of my top picks for the ultimate modular helmet tailored for memorable riding experiences!

The AGV Pista GP R Carbon Valentino Rossi Helmet, one of the best helmets ever made

The motorcycle helmets I recommend provide a perfect balance of affordability and unwavering quality, ensuring the utmost value for your investment. These are items I've become well-acquainted with during my more than 50 years of motorcycling experience, where I've led and consulted for reputable companies in over 25 countries, in addition to being an avid rider. They are the very same helmets that have earned my trust and served me exceptionally well during countless adventures.

Top 5 Best Modular Helmets

Helmet ModelCategoryShell SizesEPS Liner SizesSafety Certification
AGV SportmodularBest Overall3: XS-SM, MD-LG, XL-3XL5: XS-SM, MD, LG, XL-2XL, 3XLDOT, ECE, SHARP
Sedici Sistema II HorizonBest Entry Level2: XS-M, L-2XL4: XS-SM, MD-LG, XL-2XL, 3XLDOT, ECE
HJC i90Best Budget-Friendly3: XS-L, XL XXL, 3XL3: XS-LG, XL-2XL, 3XL-5XLDOT, ECE
Shoei Neotec 3Best Premium3: XS-M, L, XL-XXL4: XS-SM, MD, LG, XL-XXLECE, SHARP
Scorpion EXO-AT960Most Versatile3: XS-M, L, XL-XXL4: XS-SM, MD-LG, XL-2XL, 3XLDOT, ECE, SNELL

To address the diverse needs of riders, I’ve categorized my picks into five common sections: best overall, best entry-level, best budget, best premium, and most versatile. I know, the modular helmet market is flooded with options, making it challenging to find a one-size-fits-all solution.

And in my reviews, I will only recommend helmets I’ve personally encountered. I believe in offering recommendations rooted in my nearly 50 years of firsthand knowledge, ensuring that you gain valuable insights rather than relying on hearsay. Here’s the breakdown:

1. AGV Sportmodular: Best Overall

AGV Sportmodular: Buy on RevZilla | Amazon | Rated 4.7 out of 5 stars () by 336 ratings.
AGV Sportmodular: Buy on RevZilla | Amazon
● Shell Material: 100% Carbon Fiber
● Motion Energy Distribution System (M.E.D.S.): 5-Density EPS in 4 Sizes
● Ventilation: Integrated Ventilation System (IVS)
● Visor: Visor Lock System (VLS)
● Interior: Ritmo Sanitized, 2Dry, Microsense Cheek Pads
✔ Feather-light design at 1,295 grams (2.85 lbs., small)
✔ Available in 3 well-fitted shell sizes
✔ Boasts aerodynamic excellence from the racing Pista GP R helmet
✔ Offers a serene ride with plush padding and Pinlock anti-fog lens
✘ Front vent susceptibility to rain and occasional chin strap chafing
✘ Awkward visor latch

When AGV pulled the curtain on the Sportmodular—the world’s first modular helmet made entirely of carbon fiber—as part of its 70th-anniversary celebration in 2018, it felt like a watershed moment — much like my contemplations this past October when Triumph bid farewell to the iconic Truxton with the 2025 Final Edition. It was a move that hinted at a transformative shift in the industry, especially considering AGV’s prior ventures into modular design with the Miglia and Numo lineups.

The AGV Numo Evo ST, alternatively recognized as the Compact ST in the EU/UK, had proved to be a commendable, budget-friendly choice for my everyday urban commuting and touring needs. Despite achieving a 20% improvement in interior quality with the incorporation of Shalimar and Ritmo fabrics complemented by Microsense over the AGV Numo Evo, it adhered to the construction norms of its time with a thermoplastic shell — a trait shared with the Miglia.

A Quantum Leap to Carbon Fiber Excellence

But the AGV Sportmodular emerges as a genuine game-changer. It’s not just the successor to the Evo ST; it’s a leap into the future. Breaking away from tradition, AGV opted for innovation with a 100% carbon fiber build.

As far as my knowledge extends, the only other modular helmet with a fully heat-polymerized molded carbon fiber shell is the Klim TK1200, though I don’t hold it in high regard due to its limited availability in only one shell size (S-2X), which restricts fitment for different head dimensions.

Precision Fit with Multifaceted Shells

AGV adopts a distinctive approach by incorporating three shell sizes (XS-SM, MD-LG, XL-3XL) for the Sportmodular, aligning with the Tourmodular—the first modular helmet equipped with a communication system integrating DMC™ Mesh Technology – AGV INSYDE by Cardo. Despite occasional connectivity hiccups (limiting my experience with the full potential of cross-brand interconnections), AGV INSYDE successfully linked up (albeit only in Bluetooth mode) with my friend Todd’s Schuberth C5 SC2 Sena intercom during our recent motorcycle adventure in Thailand’s Doi Inthanon.

A simple click activates AGV INSYDE, taking charge and establishing a robust connection among up to 15 group riders, or, as we affectionately term it in the Cardo world, a “pack,” boasting an impressive range of 1.2 km apart, extendable to a total of 6 km. But, I digress!

The XS and S shell sizes cater to the smallest, while M and L address the next size, and XL-XXXL accommodates the largest shell size. Within these three shells are five-density EPS liners in four sizes (a feature shared with the full-face AGV K6; currently, it’s the only Italian giant with this remarkable feat), ensuring an optimal fit for sizes XS-XXXL.

Setting Records with the Lightest Modular Helmet

Even with the TK1200 tipping my scale at 3.26 pounds (1,477 grams) for my medium size, it still weighs 0.6 pounds (272 grams) more than the Sportmodular, which comes in at 3.2 pounds (1,451 grams), arguably making it the lightest modular helmet in the world today. The Tourmodular, weighing in at 1,703 grams, positions itself among competitors like the 1,695 grams Schuberth C5 and the 1,736 grams Shoei Neotec II.

I never measured the exact weight of either my AGV Numo or Miglia, but their tactile feel off the shelf hinted at a notable heaviness, emphasizing the Sportmodular’s impressive lightweight design and its significance within the brand’s lineup.

Performance and Comfort Redefined

But unlike its competitor, the Neotec III, and even its forerunner, the Neotec II, the Sportmodular lacks approval for open-face riding, denoted by the distinct P (full face) and J (jet or open face) markings on the double-D ring strap (the rings are titanium).

Of course, the earlier Neotec I and the Multitec weren’t dual-homologated either, and many of us still used them in the open-face position. The Sportmodular’s steadfast chin bars maintain their resilience during rides, rendering this limitation more of a technicality for the majority of users.

The top vent performs admirably, directing airflow onto the top center of my head through two generous ports. Similarly, the exhaust boasts two large ports to efficiently draw air out. With both fully open, I experience efficient cooling experience, though not on Arai RX-7RR or AGV Pista GP R levels, as the Sportmodular is quite localized – but it’s good.

Plush Interior with a Minor Setback

Adding to the appeal is a removable antimicrobial sweat-wicking liner comprised of Shalimar, Nabuk, and Ritmo. Ritmo graces the cheekpads and one side of the crown, providing a cooler sensation, while Shalimar, on the reverse side of the crown, offers a warmer touch. To combat moisture during damp rides, Shalimar and Nabuk join forces on the bottom of the neck roll.

Regrettably, I find the Sportmodular premium finish let down by the somewhat pedestrian aesthetics of the plastics surrounding the visor aperture and the vents. As the speedometer needle climbs past the 62 mph mark on my Kawi 400, a touch of wind noise also creeps in, echoing the sentiments humorously expressed by Boris Mihailovic in his review:

“At speed, and I mean speed because Mother Putty is deserted at the moment, the Sportmodular excels—weighing nearly half a pound less than the elite Italian brand’s Pista GP R (Rossi’s helmet!) and remains quiet, except for some wind noise past 100 km/h. Interestingly, when I turn my head slightly to either side, the wind noise disappears. But I can’t ride like that. People will think I am deformed.”

Minor setbacks? They’re just part of the exhilarating journey, but they do little to overshadow its overall performance and comfort prowess.

2. Sedici Sistema II Horizon: Best Entry-Level

Sedici Sistema II Horizon Modular Helmet
Sedici Sistema II Horizon: Buy on RevZilla | CycleGear
● Shell Material: Fiberglass and DuPont™ Kevlar® Fiber
● Motion Energy Distribution System (M.E.D.S.): 4 EPS Liner Sizes
● Ventilation: 3 Rear Exhaust Vents, 2 Position High Flow Chin Vent Channel
● Visor: Quick Release Dark Smoke Drop-Down Inner Sun Visor
● Interior: Multi-Density Cheek Pads
✔ Excellent build quality and integrates perfectly with Cardo comm systems
✔ Adjustable vents keeps you comfortably cool on the go
✔ A quick sun visor to removable pads, prioritize your comfort
✔ Efficient ventilation with adjustable vents
✘ At about 55mph, it gets pretty loud (wear ear protection)
✘ While Pinlock-ready, the separate purchase might feel like an added cost for fog-free rides

One thing I particularly love about the Sedici line of helmets is their unwavering commitment to customer feedback, a dedication that consistently drives improvements. The Sedici Sistema II Horizon, a comprehensive redesign of its predecessor, the Sedici Sistema, embodies this commitment. Priced around $250, it’s redesigned with entry-level touring riders in mind, offering the convenience of easily flipping up the face shield at the Rock Store in California or the Iron Horse Station in North Carolina iconic motorcycle pit stops.

Innovative Design Catering to Rider Preferences

Having had the opportunity to compare the two versions side by side, the Sistema II maintains the signature fiberglass Kevlar shell, now reinforced with Kevlar at the top, but introduces a polycarbonate chin bar, altering the helmet’s shape to a true intermediate oval. This subtle change, elongating the front-to-back dimension and narrowing the sides, caters to the preferences of the majority of riders in the American market.

As a beginner, you might be unfamiliar with helmet sizing nuances, but my article on how to size and buy a motorcycle helmet provides valuable insights.

Enhanced Shell Options and Improved Ventilation

With the Sistema II, you benefit from two shell sizes: extra small to medium in one, and large to three XL in the second. Not much like the HJC i90, which provides three shell sizes, but the Sistema II compensates this with a dual-density EPS liner engineered for optimized airflow.

The redesign integrates the spoiler into the shell itself, transforming the back vent system, which, in turn, cuts down on wind noise to a safe 85 dB for periods shorter than 8 hours. Impressively, Sistema II Horizon proves to be 6% quieter than the Simpson Mod Bandit and 7% quieter than the Nolan N100-5. But it is 3% louder than the more premium Schuberth C4 Pro and 8% louder than the Shoei Neotec II. Yet, when all vents and exhausts are closed, it noticeably minimizes noise, offering a quieter experience.

Say goodbye to those irritating wobble movements during shoulder checks above 70mph.

Comfort Tailored to You

You also get a 50% more superior ventilation through the smarter chin, top vents, and a functional exhaust valve on the rear spoiler. Adjustable temple padding and a 5mm margin for forehead adjustments ensure a custom fit that feels just right.

As a seasoned rider, the moisture-wicking inner lining and the option to remove, swap, and wash the insides make the Sistema II Horizon a must-have. The inbuilt drop-down sun visor, similar to the Shoei Neotec 2, transforms it into my worthwhile companion for chasing sunsets from Wawa to Sault Ste. Marie.

Balancing Features and Weight

Yes, the medium size does tip the scales at three pounds seven ounces, slightly on the heavier side. But considering the thoughtful yet straightforward innovations integrated into the Sedici Sistema II Horizon, that weight feels right at home in the world of modular helmets.

After all, comfort, safety, and style shouldn’t be compromised, and this helmet strikes a perfect balance.

3. HJC i90: Best Budget-Friendly

HJC i90 Modular Helmet
HJC i90: Buy on RevZilla | Amazon
● Shell Material: Polycarbonate composite
● Motion Energy Distribution System (M.E.D.S.): 4 EPS Liner Sizes
● Ventilation: ACS Advanced Channeling Ventilation System
● Visor: Larger HJ-V9 drop down internal sun visor
● Interior: SuperCool® moisture-wicking interior
✔ High-quality paint and graphics with a vast variety
✔ Wide eye port for excellent visibility
✔ Robust and user-friendly chinbar mechanism
✔ Efficient and easy-to-use ventilation system
✔ Homologated for use with chinbar open or closed, enhancing versatility
✘ Lack of an option for a double-D ring fastener
✘ Difficulty in locating and using sun visor switches with thick gloves

The HJC i90, making its debut in 2020 as a successor to the IS-Max II, stands as a testament to the idea that a feature-packed modular helmet doesn’t have to come with a hefty price tag north of $200. Homologated for both closed and open positions, it effortlessly transitions from city cruising to country sweepers. With its plush inner liner, user-friendly chinbar, integrated sun visor, effective vents, and vibrant paint, it manages to defy expectations and outshine its price.

A Surprising Harmony

HJC asserts the i90 to be an intermediate-oval shape, promising suitability for a wide range of riders. Drawing a personal comparison to helmets like the Shoei XR1100 and a Shark Skwal, the fit of the i90 sits comfortably between sport and sport-touring, offering a snug yet accommodating feel.

While not the lightest in its class, the i90 holds its own against competitors like the Caberg Duke II and Shark Evo ES, which are approximately 50g (0.11 lbs.) lighter. It weighs at 1,700g (3.75 lbs., size small), competing admirably with its more high-end flip-up cousin, the carbon/aramid-shelled HJC RHPA 90S, showcasing a mere 150g (0.33 lbs.) difference.

Interestingly, placing it side by side with my full-face Shark Skwal reveals that the i90 doesn’t compromise on size. Thanks to HJC’s strategic use of three different shell sizes, accommodating XS to XXXL, the helmet maintains a proportional fit. For those with smaller heads, this approach ensures a snug fit without unnecessary padding, reducing strain on the neck.

A Thoughtful Interior Design

The i90 doesn’t fall short on interior comfort, boasting a high-end feel. HJC incorporates proprietary Coolmax anti-bacterial fabric on the headliner and cheek pads, complemented by soft faux suede on the chin curtain and strap lining. This combination ensures a comfortable and irritation-free experience, even during longer rides.

Notably, the cheek pads extend further, providing additional coverage to prevent draughts and minimize wind noise. The removable, washable, and replaceable liners and cheek pads, featuring a subtle curve for spectacle wearers, round out the thoughtful design.

While accommodating glasses remains a breeze with the i90, I still find myself leaning toward the comfort of contact lenses. The fiddliness of getting glasses to fit in any helmet persists, but the i90 ensures a pleasant experience for those who prefer spectacles.

Visor Enhancements and Peculiar Hitches

Compared to its predecessor, the IS-MAX II, the i90 boasts a larger visor aperture, offering increased visibility above the eye line. The optically correct visor blocks out 99% of UV rays and is Pinlock-ready, with a Pinlock 70 Max Vision anti-fog lens included in some markets. While effective in wet climates, the Pinlock might be overkill in less demanding conditions, given the large chin vent and a small removable visor guard that efficiently deflects breath from the visor.

But a peculiar hitch emerges when I’m opening the visor—a feeling that it might break. Despite the quality construction of the visor itself, equipped with dual opening tabs for convenient use with either hand, it’s held closed by a small tab at the bottom center of the visor aperture. This minor concern adds a touch of caution to an otherwise stellar helmet experience.

Exploring Alternatives

In the same breath, the NEXX X.Vilitur may prove to be a suitable first-touring modular helmet. For the most part, I find no differences between the new N100-5 Plus and its predecessor, the N100-5, both designed to cater to all riders.

4. Shoei Neotec 3: Best Premium

Shoei Neotec 3 Modular Helmet
Shoei Neotec 3: Buy on RevZilla | Amazon
● Shell Material: Advanced Integrated Matrix (AIM)
● Motion Energy Distribution System (M.E.D.S.): Multi-Piece EPS Liner
● Ventilation: All-new exhaust outlets flank adjustable upper air intake)
● Visor: Built-in QSV-1 Inner Sun Shield
● Interior: 3D Engineered Moisture-Wicking Interior
✔ Superior performance compared to the Neotec II
✔ Outstanding build quality and comfort
✔ Highly practical for road riders
✔ Effective rain protection, with clever channeling of water away from the top vent
✘ Absence of bug mesh in the top vent
✘ I don’t like the micrometric strap fastener

As I would have anticipated from a top-tier premium motorcycle helmet, the Shoei Neotec 3 (expected to be available in North America by spring 2024), a successor to the Neotec II, showcases an impeccable finish on its outer shell. As emphasized by John Milbank, Consumer Editor of Bennetts BikeSocial:

“As I unbox this helmet, I’m met with the familiar yet reassuring sight of Shoei’s Advanced Integrated Matrix (AIM) construction—a five-layer laminate of glass and organic fibers that promises not just style, but strength and rigidity.”

Aesthetic Choices and Price Dynamics

In a nod to personal style, I opted for the distinctive matt blue metallic finish, a $40 premium over the more understated plain black or white options priced at $786.99. Opting for full graphics at $904.99 reflects both a personal touch and a willingness to embrace the premium offerings of this advanced headgear. Interestingly, this new iteration sees a modest $40 price hike from its predecessor, the Neotec II, a testament to the continuous evolution of Shoei’s design and technology.

Striving for Superior Safety Standards

In my world of helmets, safety is paramount, and the Neotec 3 doesn’t disappoint. Certified to the rigorous ECE 22.06 standard, it surpasses its ECE 22.05-certified counterparts like, say, the AGV Sportmodular, by undergoing additional impact tests, including high and low-speed scenarios, and introducing an oblique test to enhance protection against twisting forces upon impact.

Seamless Dual Homologation and Intuitive Design

But what truly impresses me most is the dual homologation, allowing the Neotec 3 to be worn confidently in the open or closed position while riding. Shoei’s clever design eliminates the need for manual locks, a thoughtful touch that aligns with the brand’s commitment to rider convenience.

The Neotec 3 employs a medium-size shell for XS, S, and M, a single large shell for L, and an extra-large shell for XL and XXL, ensuring a customized fit. As I slip it on, the helmet feels like a tailored extension, offering a snug fit without unnecessary bulk.

Functional Flip-Front Design for Practicality

The allure of a flip-front helmet lies in its versatility. Whether communicating with fellow riders, making a quick fuel stop, or enjoying the breeze with an open-face feel, the Neotec 3 seamlessly integrates these functions. A personal touch that resonates with me is the ability to unlock my phone with the chin bar up—just one of those small but impactful conveniences that make a difference on the road.

But a gentle reminder comes with the freedom of open-face riding at higher speeds—significant drag. For those who relish the wind in their face, LS2 Advant or Shark Evo ‘flip-over’ lids might be worth considering.

A Negligible Trade-Off

Despite weighing 1,732g (3.82 lbs.) in medium, slightly heavier than the Schuberth C5 at 1,695g (3.74 lbs.) and the AGV Tourmodular at 1,703g (3.75 lbs.), the Neotec 3 dispels any concerns about neck strain when riding. The real test lies in its aerodynamics, and on the road, the helmet feels nimble and well-balanced.

The difference in weight is, in practical terms, negligible, affirming Shoei’s commitment to rider comfort.

Aerodynamic Refinements for Enhanced Riding Comfort

While the Neotec 3 may not possess the invisibility of Arai RX-7V Evo, it navigates the wind with grace better than the Neotec II. Only when fully in the wind at high speeds do I sense a minor, non-intrusive drag—a subtle reminder of the helmet’s presence, far from bothersome in the grand scheme of the ride.

5. Scorpion EXO-AT960: Most Versatile

Scorpion EXO-AT960: Buy on RevZilla | Amazon
● Shell Material: Advanced LG Polycarbonate
● Motion Energy Distribution System (M.E.D.S.): Multi-layer EPS
● Shield: Optically Clear Removable EverClear
● Visor: Retractable interchangeable Speedview drop down sun visor
● Interior: Antimicrobial KwikWick II
✔ Transforms seamlessly from an adventure-style helmet to a standard street bike orientation.
✔ Quick and easy transition with a locking flip-front for added convenience.
✔ Accommodates eyeglasses
✔ Goggles, fog-treated eyeshield, and ADV peak are easily removable
✘ Slightly heavier at 4.09 lbs. for my medium size
✘ Screw-type fasteners, while facilitating easy transitions, may loosen over time

In the vast world of helmet preferences, we all gravitate toward different aspects—some seek technical marvels, others desire flashy graphics, while some prioritize safety or airflow. For me, the ideal helmet is one that seamlessly blends a collection of useful features, and the Scorpion EXO-AT960 takes center stage in answering this quest.

Modular Capability Unveiled

Debuting as the successor to the AT950 in 2023, the Scorpion EXO-AT960 (known as the ADX-2 in Europe, replacing the ADX-1, equivalent to the 950), enters the scene with modular capability in a full-face adventure-style helmet. With a quick transformation, it effortlessly shifts to a standard street bike orientation, a feature that aligns perfectly with my desire for versatility in a single helmet.

Upgrading to Meet Standards

But I wouldn’t consider it unless it met rigorous safety standards, and so, the AT960 steps into the shoes of the AT950, carrying forward its notable features. The upgrade, driven by changing helmet safety regulations in Europe and the integration of Scorpion-EXO’s built-in communicator system, reflects a commitment to keeping up with evolving standards.

The AT960, aligning with the new ECE 22.06 standard, ensures compliance with the latest EU regulations, ushering in a new era for helmet safety.

Made with Purpose

With a polycarbonate shell and EPS liner, the AT960 opts for a tried-and-true approach. The inclusion of three shell sizes (XS-M, L, XL-XXL) ensures a tailored fit, eliminating the weight burden often associated with mismatched shell sizes. Yet, it must be acknowledged that, at 4.09 lbs. for a medium helmet, the AT960 leans slightly on the heavier side.

But this weight penalty is the trade-off for a distinctive ADV-style peak, a convenient drop-down sun shield, and a secure locking flip-front.

Comparatively, the weight remains reasonable, especially considering the added features. In a market where the Schuberth E2, with similar features albeit weighing 3.97 lbs., commands a price tag ($799) over twice that of the AT960, the Scorpion helmet emerges as a cost-effective choice, starting at around $280.

From Adventure to Street

As I transition from the adventurous terrain to the bustling streets, the enhancements in the Scorpion EXO-AT960 doesn’t escape my notice. The KwikFit cheekpads upgrade, now accommodating eyeglasses seamlessly—a practical touch that addresses a common concern from the previous AT950.

The ability to wear goggles, remove the fog-treated eyeshield, and detach the ADV peak with screw-type fasteners adds a layer of adaptability. This means I can effortlessly transform the AT960 from an open dirt-style helmet to a streamlined street look.

A Streamlined Experience

The addition of a port on the left-hand side for the EXO-COM communication set introduces a streamlined communication solution. While some riders express concerns about its placement affecting standard comm sets, my experience, attaching a Cardo to the port’s cover, has been hassle-free.

Striking a Balance

The dual chin vents, one closable and one not, offer commendable airflow. But for optimal breathing capacity and a fog-free face shield, I flip the shield up. While the face shield can be closed over goggles, the transition might not be as smooth for long rides in “dirt” configuration, prompting consideration for shield removal.

Comfort That Speaks Volumes

Beyond the nuanced dynamics of ventilation, the Scorpion EXO-AT960 excels in the realm of comfort. My head size is about 7 1/4, and I have a round type head. I got a medium, and it’s perfect. My friend is about a 6 3/4 oval, and she got the small, which is a perfect fit after break-in.

Such personal insights add a layer of authenticity to the overall helmet experience.

Michael’s Summary and Conclusion

Modular helmets fit a particular niche category and a relatively small percentage of motorcyclists will fit this market.

These helmets are favorites among adventure touring and touring riders because of the ability to flip the front of the helmet up without removing the helmet and talk on the phone, drink, talk to another rider or even walk into a store and talk to the cashier, and of course smokers like them.

In the beginning, modular helmets were very happy, and some still are but there is a wide selection now, and the better ones can be very reasonable in weight now.

I prefer to wear a full face adventure touring style motorcycle helmet but that’s just my personal preference I don’t mind taking a helmet on and off to do other things.

Only you can decide if the practical features of a modular helmet are right for you.

AGVSPORT Knee and Body Armor

I've diligently categorized my motorcycle gear recommendations into all available categories, with the aim of providing you with a comprehensive analysis that showcases the absolute best options for all your needs. These items are the culmination of in-depth research, extensive testing, and personal use throughout my vast experience of 50+ years in the world of motorcycling. Besides being a passionate rider, I've held leadership positions and offered consultancy services to reputable companies in over 25 countries. To See Top Picks and the Best Prices & Places to Buy: Click Here!

FAQs — I Have the Answers!

Q: What Is The Quietest Modular Helmet?

With an impressive noise level of 85 dB(A) at 62 mph (99.78 km/h) on a Sportster with no fairing, the Schuberth C5 is the quietest modular helmet in the world today. A remarkable feat attributed to its innovative neck roll concept, ensuring a flawless seal at the bottom of the helmet shell, coupled with a well-sealed visor featuring insulated acoustic foam.

Q: What Is the Lightest Modular Helmet?

At a mere 1,295 grams (2.85 lbs.) for a size small, the AGV Sportmodular is the lightest modular helmet in the world today, thanks to its 100% carbon fiber shell construction.

Information for this article was partially sourced and researched from the following authoritative government, educational, and non-profit organizations:


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About the Author:

Michael Parrotte started his career in the motorcycle industry by importing AGV Helmets into the North American market. He was then appointed the Vice President of AGV Helmets America. In total, he worked with AGV Helmets for 25 years. He has also served as a consultant for KBC Helmets, Vemar Helmets, Suomy Helmets, Marushin Helmets, KYT Helmets, and Sparx Helmets.

In 1985, he founded AGV Sports Group, Inc. with AGV Helmets in Valenza, Italy. For over 38 years now, the company has quietly delivered some of the best protective gear for motorcyclists in the world.

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