I recently purchased a full face helmet. I was choosing between an HJC and the LS2. I replace my helmet every 3-4 years even if it hasn’t experienced a drop or crash. I just give it away to some random messenger using a crappy, generic, probably non-certified helmet. Because of this. since I will just be eventually giving my old helmet away, I do not buy top of the line helmets which would be very costly. I have been loyal to the HJC brand but the local cost of new model HJCs have recently gone up. Older models that are on sale are still expensive though still made in Korea. I was interested in a 3 year old model AC series that was still being sold for USD110. When I saw the LS2 on sale at USD37, I just had to take a look.
For the exterior, this LS2 does not have a compact profile though it does not have a bulky one either, initial impression is that it has a sleek profile. Weight based on a sticker on the helmet is 1550+/-50 gms. It has a chin and top vent that can be closed and opened. The rear had exhaust vents with stainless mesh guards. a clear shield comes with it, procedure for removing it reminds me of that of HJCs. The shield has a small tab that would be a around 11 o clock (front being 12 and your left ear being 9). It is a tad difficult to use with your gloves on and if your gloves are dirty, guaranteed to smudge the shield. The black rubber trim at the lowest edge of the lens is snugly in place and very tight where both ends meet giving you the impression that this rubber ring is one piece. The paint finish wasn’t perfect out of the box with some areas having a grainy finish this was easily fixed by an abrasive wax followed by a polishing wax. The paint booth and process probably isn’t air tight.
For the interior, the padded liner is removable so it can be washed. The texture of the padded liner I find to be a bit rough, it really isn’t a problem for me since I use a balaclava. The impact absorbing polystyrene liner is grooved that will allow air to flow as compared to some helmets that has a smooth polystyrene liner. The vents start working at 40kph and at 80kph noise starts to be heard though acceptable. With the shield down, at speeds below 40kph, misting can be noticed. A breath guard is included which i removed as a felt it restricts my breathing (I’m an asthmatic). With the shield down noise conduction is also a tad louder than an HJC. Also when closing the shield from fully open with a quick snap, the sharp sounding pop can be a tad loud to the ear, solution is to take it easy when closing the shield. When worn, pressure is equal throuout your head with no annoying excessive pressure point somewhere. The cheek pads go all the way around up to the outer edge of my eye. I’ve seen some helmets where the cheek pads go all the way to the bottom of the eye.
The retention system has a ratchet type of buckle with a quick release pull tab. This would allow less manipulation of the retention system when removing the helmet in event of a crash. The buckle and quick release tab is colored bright orange for quick identification which gave me the impression this was the reason for its design. What I do miss is a D-ring so I can lock the helmet to my ride.
If you have been using an open helmet for years as in my case as I felt a full face was over kill for a Vespisti, the change to a full face will be like night and day. Your peripheral vision laterally and downward will be decreased. You will need more shift of your head to view your lower and lateral fields. This all a matter of getting used too. Putting on your prescription glasses is not easy but of course doable. The design of the helmet is also difficult for me to see farther down a corner as the lower edge of the chin bar hits my shoulder even before my chin is right on top of my shoulder. Of course this problem is probably due to my physique and not a design problem. I really don’t look this far down a corner with my riding style, this might matter to sport bike riders.
Please remember this is a subjective review, it is based on comparison to my present HJC open face helmet, and experiences that I can remember from use of an HJC and Shoei helmets eons ago. Noise, venting and comfort levels are subjective. Remember when buying a helmet to wear your riding gear-jacket, gloves, glasses and a balaclava. Work the prospective helmet you plan to buy while wearing your gear to check for comfort and ease of use. Check for the ease of putting it on and off, check for movement restrictions, ease of putting on, removing and comfort of your glasses. Close the shield check for misting. If there is a nearby electric fan, you can check the efficiency of the vents. Unfortunately for noise, you have to test the helmet while riding your bike. Check my previous article on choosing a helmet by Jay Leno and Arai.
Bottom line-this is a good value for money helmet. It is certified ECER22-05. For my Vespa commute, stop and go traffic with maximum speeds of 90-100kph, venting and noise is acceptable as well as comfort. As to its application for sport bikes, this might be a different matter.
Ride safe fellow Vespistis!