While the rise of enduro racing has inspired a new generation of discipline-specific bikes and components, it has also led to a new category of apparel. Combining DH worthy descents and speeds with climbs and sprints that could be equally at home in an XC race, Enduro brings with it unique requirements for your equipment.
Helmets are one area where riders are still having to make a tough decision based on the event, the course, and even the weather. With certain races requiring full face helmets for timed stages, and others allowing anything, racers are forced to choose between carrying two helmets for the same race, wearing a convertible full face/half shell, or using the most protective, but ultimately hottest solution, a dedicated full face.
The inspiration for the IXS Xult came from that grey area between a full face and a half shell. With the help of Cedric Gracia, IXS set out to create a helmet that offered the protection of a true full face, yet was ventilated enough to keep it comfortable all day long…
Engineered to meet European EN1078 and American C.P.S.C standards, the Xult meets the standards of many other downhill specific mountain bike helmets. Weighing in around 1100g, the helmet isn’t the lightest full face around but that is likely due to huge vents from the Vortex aeration system and Xrail absorption unit with X Matter inserts at key impact zones. The larger the vents the more the remaining structure has to be reinforced to retain its impact resistance which is why you don’t see huge vents on most DH helmets. This Vortex ventilation system is where the Xult gets its cross over designation as IXS and Cedric claim the resulting helmet is ventilated enough to wear for an entire Enduro race – going up, and down.
The Xult is built with a Fiber Reinforce Polymer shell and an EPS liner with the X Matter Inserts for absorbing both impact and rotational forces. Inside you’ll find a Coolmax padding system with an EPR emergency release pad design to allow for easy removal of the helmet after a crash.
Available in July with S/M, M/L, and L/XL sizing, the IXS Xult will sell for €349 (~$388).