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Shoei GT-Air 2 helmet review


The premier GT-Air of the name quickly gained respect in the market for full-face road helmets. Supposed to raise the level another notch, is its descendant the Shoei GT-Air 2 worth the budget you will have to pay to acquire it? My opinion after several thousand kilometers of use!

The Japanese brand, historically specialized in more sporty helmets, surprised people by launching in 2012 the first version of the GT-Air, a truly road-oriented full-face helmet with – a first for a Japanese full-face, a retractable sun visor. Marketed in 2019, its direct successor, the GT-Air 2, was to bring its share of improvements, particularly in terms of ventilation and soundproofing, as well as a predisposition to receive a communication kit.

Shoei gt-air 2

Sleek lines for the Shoei GT-Air 2

The beautiful work

For a road helmet, the Shoei GT-Air 2 has a really sporty look. Its profiled design and its sharp edges make it particularly stylish. I don't know many people who don't like him. But it is above all the manufacturing quality that will amaze you. Particularly if you're coming from a less high-end headset. The assemblies are perfect: not an unwelcome play fart, the contacts are perfect, nothing sticks out. A very nice helmet. That alone helps to digest the price of the beast!

Shoei gt-air 2 screen

The field of vision is very wide, the Pinlock lens ensures

Quick focus on weight. Available in three sizes, the shell of said Shoei is a composite of several layers of fiber of different natures (organic, glass) laid by hand for an optimal level of protection against impacts. However, the weight is average for road-sports helmets, with its 1460 grams on my kitchen scale with Pinlock lens, muffler and bib. In short, it's good, but we could have expected a bit better. That said, when you have it on your head, with good mass balancing helping, you don't feel it. And I drove several days in a row with the GT-Air 2 screwed on my head without noting anything in this regard. In short, I validate.

shoei GT-Air 2 interior foams

Complete interior foam, with bib and muffler

Better than at home

Second characteristic expected on a GT helmet: interior comfort. In this regard, I would say that this is the most comfortable headset I have ever tried. I'll spare you the comparison with the Charentaises, but I don't lack the desire to place it here. Perhaps the Shoei GT-Air 2 is particularly suited to the round/oval shape of my humble skull. The foam (replaceable) provide just the right amount of firm support, without pressure points. Everything is properly ventilated and the textile is pleasant to the touch, even when it is hot. Wearing glasses is provided by Shoei . In my case, the foam at the back of the head presses a little on the temples and the glasses move up a bit, so that they don't fit on the nose. Not annoying, and certainly suitable for my body type.

Ventilation Shoei gt-air 2

The upper ventilation offers two positions

The comfort of the foam is supported by a ventilation system which I also found very effective. On the GT-Air 2, it is based on two imposing air intakes on the front, with two exhaust vents at the rear. Nothing revolutionary in fact. But the thing is that unlike many other helmets where the air flow delivered is “symbolic”, here, when you open it, it blows cool, a lot of cool. It feels very good on the scalp. On this subject, it's impossible to make a mistake when handling the vents: the opening flaps are easy to handle, and the notches are clear.

screen lock system

The screen lock system is overzealous

Screen: habit and vigor

The same cannot be said of the Shoei GT-Air 2 screen... While it is very good in terms of optical quality, width of the field of vision and fog management, its handling requires learning and quite a bit of force. The notching of the joints turns out to be super firm... Months of handling have not changed anything noticeably. And above all, the safety catch makes completely closing the screen quite complicated, and even more so opening it.

Shoei GT-Air sunscreen

The sunscreen, longer than that of the premier Shoei GT-Air of the name

We sometimes think we have closed it, but it is in the airflow position (very useful in the city in humid conditions). You have to squeeze the entire screen with your hand to complete the job. And conversely, you have to push hard on the tab on the screen to unclip it and allow it to open. Unnamed galley with winter gloves. Reassuring in the event of a mess, but the name of a cylinder head gasket, in use, we spit it out, profanity! On the other hand, in addition to the reduced risk of accidental opening, it certainly affects the waterproofness of the screen. The peripheral seal is well compressed and the outings in the rain proved to me that the water did not pass through.

Shoei GT-Air 2 sunscreen length adjustment

Adjust the length of the sunscreen with this lever and its twin on the other side

As for the sunscreen, revised since V1 of the GT-Air, it does the job very well. Its degree of smoking seems well suited to me. And then once deployed (easily and gently, please!), it covers the entire field of vision. If your nose is oversized, don't worry, Shoei has provided two small levers at the temples which allow it to go down about 1.5 cm lower.

Place for Sena SRL2 intercom

Two of the three locations provided for the Sena SRL2 intercom. The headphones also have their housings.

Which intercom for the Shoei GT-Air 2?

The question is quickly answered: it will be Sena srl2 communication system (Based on the Sena 20S) and nothing else. Count in €295.00 – excluding promo. It's a headset (the good joke), but no choice, because everything is designed to accommodate this intercom. A slot is hollowed out at the back of the head for the battery, while the side covers to be removed free up space for clipping in the control module. And in fact, it is impossible to attach an intercom from another brand, because the space is taken up by these housings. Or else you'll have to stick it, and in a not very practical place... Look on the bright side: the intercom seems well made, and in terms of integration, you won't find better.

Small detail revealing the design quality of the helmet in passing: the thickness of the polystyrene inner shell providing cushioning is not affected by the locations listed above. Safety first at Shoei !

Shoei gt-air 2 spoiler

The design of the Shoei GT-Air 2, studied in the wind tunnel

The GT-Air II in dynamics

We engage the micrometric stainless steel buckle, which is secure and intuitive to use, and on the way. We are once again dealing with a very good performance from Shoei . The work in the wind tunnel paid off and the Shoei GT-Air 2 does not offer significant resistance likely to tire the neck in the long run. You realize it when you turn your head for the checks (no radar, eh, blind spot). The drag then increases and it pulls even more. As it should be with road equipment, you forget it, whatever the speed. Sign of efficiency!

Based on my experience, the much-vaunted soundproofing does not seem so revolutionary to me. I would rate it average, no more. Be careful, we are not talking about a shrill whistling noise, but a white noise-like blast, which still ends up tiring. On long journeys, you won't forget to use earplugs. Not a big deal, most backpackers are already subscribed to it.

Shoei Pinlock lens key

The key provided to tighten the Pinlock lens

And otherwise ?

The headset I tested is adorned with a beautiful plain matte black. Premier instinct: “I hope it won’t get too many fingerprints and will be easy to clean.” Don't worry about that, it's definitely the case, a wipe of damp microfiber and you'll get rid of everything that stains and crushes.

In terms of details, I liked the fact that the Shoei GT-Air 2 comes with a key for tighten the Pinlock, or that its fairly flat base makes it quite stable when placed on the tank. Unless the cord of the cover does not have a stopper, or that removing the screen requires a lot of effort.

EQRS Shoei

The emergency helmet extraction system, EQRS

The EQRS, the foam extraction system by emergency services, is working well. I tested it on my Apple just now - I look smart with my headset in front of my PC... The cheek pads actually come off by pulling the handles. The helmet is then removed easily, without pulling too hard on the neck. A system that might save your day one day.

Weight4
Soundproofing3.8
Interior comfort5
Field of view4.5
Quality/finish5
Ventilation4.5

My opinion: Very good mention!

The Shoei GT-Air 2 deserves the laurels that the motorcycle press has given it. No doubt, this beautiful, very well finished object will give you value for your money! It is an excellent road helmet which will suit riders in an upright position or slightly leaning forward on their machine, wanting to rack up the miles in senatorial comfort. The foams offer excellent support, ventilation ensures, watertightness is there, the screen, although hard to handle, ensures perfect comfort, like the sunscreen. Dynamically, it also keeps its word and is very stable, although not as quiet as hoped (hence this rating), which can be tiring on long journeys. That said, easy to remedy with earplugs!
4.5

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Loic

Editor and tester for Motoblouz , I am an unconditional fan of roads with bends. For me, the motorcycle is a means of escape as well as a means of transport.

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