Starting this weekend at Strade Bianche on Saturday and then as Paris-Nice gets under way from Sunday, team Movistar will ride the new Catlike Cloud 352 aero helmet that they helped develop. The adaptive aero lid gets two replaceable bolt-on shells that offer two levels of aerodynamics and ventilation, plus a distinctly Catlike look. Get a closer look at the helmet in both guises after the break, plus a video of it in action against the wind…
The Cloud 352 aims to set a new concept for an aero road helmet for everything from triathlons to time trials, to crits and long road races. The helmet uses a ‘Dual AEROSystem’ tech, letting the cyclist adapt it to suit the ride through the use of interchangeable shells that cover the bulk of the helmet’s top. The idea was to deliver the best possible aerodynamic performance, while being able to adjust for the desire balance between ventilation and slipperiness in the wind.
The helmet gets three large central front facing vents that ensure sufficient ventilation in either setup. The sides of the helmet, where most helmet drag is claimed to occur, stay completely smooth getting only a graphic treatment. Then a large screw-down ring secures modular shells over the top of the helmet to dial in more or less ventilation while maximizing aero efficiency. The simple system allows the quick change from the smooth VeloDrom shell to the more open Breathable Reticulated Shell.
Catlike engineers worked with the behavior of several different shell layouts, before coming to the grid of tiny holes as the most aerodynamic solution. The final ‘Breathable Reticulated Shell‘ ends up with 352 holes that let air in and heat out through the net-like structure’s perforations making for one of the most ventilated aero helmets. Anyone keeping track of Catlike’s penchant for putting more holes in a helmet, should be happy with this one that clearly takes the cake.
The smooth VeloDrom shell still allows excellent airflow beneath it, as the helmet has internal venting channels that connect the main helmet’s front and rear vents. Plus beneath the modular shell area, the helmet is quite open, so heat from the head can move up and be carried away by internal airflow moving through these channels. And then the VeloDrom shell itself also provides protection from the weather. It is this reason that Movistar has chosen to start riding with it in the Spring Classics.
The Cloud 352 uses a simple, light retention system to provide a dialed and height adjustable fit. Like the Olula that was just introduced this week as well, the new Cloud 352 will come in three sizes S, M & L to fit heads from 54-62cm. The Cloud 352 will come in five base colors at first, with three shell colors (both the perforated Breathable Reticulated shell and smooth aero VeloDrom shells will be included). Helmets will be in: all white, fluorescent yellow, black & white, white & black, and red; shells will be in white, fluorescent yellow, and red. Like the Olula, the aero lid will also be made in Catlike’s Spanish production facility, and will retail for 180€.
No word yet on availability. Catlike has promised availability by mid April for the new Cloud 352.