Gear Review – Quicksilver Icon Airflite Helmet
Brushed alloy is the new chrome. There are zero performance benefits from its use, but boy does it look good. You’ll find ample use of it on modern motorcycles like the BMW R Nine T, Kawasaki Z900RS, and the Honda CB1000R Neo Sports Cafe. And now, thanks to Icon 1000, you can wear that same finish on your head in the form of the Icon Airflite Quicksilver helmet.
Here’s how Icon’s coolest new lid stacks up out on the street…
Icon Airfilte Fit and Finish
When my Icon Airflite Quicksilver arrived I was instantly impressed with its quality and finish. This is to be expected though. I’ve owned plenty of Icon gear in the past and know that they pride themselves on this. My helmet came with an additional tinted visor so I swapped it out with the included clear version straight away for a much more aggressive look. The visor installation process requires no tools and takes less than a minute to complete.
The main external visor of the Airflite is unlike any I’ve seen before. The unique design extends down to cover the entire chin of the helmet and has a look not dissimilar to Hannibal Lecter’s mask. The visor has been specially designed to prevent distortion and offers a wide, unobstructed field of view. Along with having the option to swap the main visor, you can also make other customizations to the Icon Airflite helmet. Along with being able to choose from a wide range of main visor colors, you can also install a matching rear spoiler to really tie things together. Additionally Icon has designed a peak for the Airflite which replaces the main visor giving the helmet more of an MX aesthetic.
The Airflite helmet also comes with an integrated tinted ICON Dropshield. The pilot style visor drops down from inside the helmet between the main visor and your forehead to offer relief from harsh light. The Dropshield is operated by using a simple thumb tab that quickly deploys or detracts the shield with little effort.
One thing about the Airflite’s main visor that isn’t ideal is how it sits when raised. Due to the extended chin, it sits right out like the brim of a baseball cap. At speed, this will cause a fair bit of wind resistance at speed, but it hasn’t been a big issue for me. The amount of time I ride with my visor up versus down is negligible.
Icon Airfilte Form and Function
Airflow on the Airflite Quicksilver helmet is maximized through an oversized intake on the chin bar which channels air between the liner and the EPS foam, then out the vents on the back. Inside the chin is a switch that can be used to channel air to the shield, to your face or close it altogether. Additional vents on the brow add even more airflow into the mix making this an excellent helmet choice for warm conditions. A washable HydraDry liner also helps to keep things dry.
Along with airflow into the helmet, Icon has paid special attention to how it flows over it. The helmet’s aerodynamic design helps to reduce fatigue and wind buffeting at higher speeds. Turning my head to check lanes at freeway speeds caused very little in the way of wind resistance. The Airflite also does a great job of dealing with wind noise. Pushing the visor all the way down will engage a simple locking tab on the chin. Along with keeping the visor in place, it secures it firmly against a rubber seal that runs around the entire viewport. This creates a nice airtight seal and results in no wind whistles and reduced overall noise inside the helmet.
Obviously the Icon Airflite helmet features more of a sports silhouette than the retro helmets I tend to gravitate towards. Despite this, it’s bulkier than I expected. It’s not the lightest helmet I own either, tipping the scales at 3 pounds 12 ounces (1.7kg) but this hasn’t been an issue for me. As for the fit Icon produce the Airflite in 3 different polycarbonate shell sizes and they sell interchangeable internal padding so you can really fine-tune the fit. Safety-wise, the Airflite has you – and your head – covered with DOT, ECE, and PSC certifications.
Handlaid Quicksliver Finish
The silver paint applied to the shell of each Icon Airflite Quicksilver helmet has been carefully sanded away by hand, giving each one a bespoke finish (as in no two helmets are the same). It’s an antiqued effect that manages to feel very modern at the same time. The Icon Airflite is a wild-looking helmet and the Quicksilver paint finish adds a whole nother level of cool. It’s packed with smart features that make it a stand out in my helmet collection and at only $290USD (+$50 for the smoked visor) you’ve got yourself an excellent item of headgear.
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