In all actuality, a lot of the new “enduro” specific product is no different than what many have been using for simply mountain biking. That isn’t to say that truly Enduro specific products don’t really exist as the race genre does have some unique requirements. Specifically, the need to be comfortable in your gear while pedaling the transfer stages, but still protected on the near World Cup DH caliber descents on some of the races like the Enduro World Series.
For some, that need meant carrying two helmets for race day – a full face for the timed descents, and a normal lid for the climbing or more XC oriented segments. When Bell approached the idea of designing a helmet for Enduro racing, they noticed the obvious fact that carrying one helmet is better than two. Starting with their popular Bell Super, a functional and removable chin bar was added to create a true 2 in 1 helmet…
Obviously, the concept of a helmet with a removable chin bar is nothing new. Perhaps most famously (or infamously), Giro had their own version over 10 years ago with the Switchblade. The issue this style of helmet has always faced though, is the ability to create a chin bar that is rigid enough to deflect a frontal impact yet is still removable.
Difficult yes, but impossible? Not after seeing the Bell Super 2R which even has competing helmet manufacturers complimenting the design. In addition to being protective, the helmet also looks to be well ventilated with 23 helmet vents, 4 brow vents for the Overbrow ventilation, and 6 additional vents in the chin bar. Unlike most full face helmets, inside you’ll find the TAG fit system just like you’ll find on the Super. The dial fit system with 3 position vertical adjustment is key to proper fit when not using the chin bar. Inside you’ll also find Bell’s X-Static padding.
While the Super 2 shell is the updated version of the Super that you know and love, the real stand out here is the addition of the chin bar. Make no mistake, the Super 2R does not carry the same certifications as their downhill helmets, but is designed to keep your face in one piece during the typical All mountain/Enduro crash. Designed to work with most goggles, the helmet features a GoggleGuide adjustable visor with breakaway screws.
The Super 2R chin bar gets its strength from 3 main design attributes: a full wrap around design, 3 locking mechanical latches, and reinforcing inserts which “plug” into the lower vents. The two side latches use a beefy steel hook which clamps down onto small recesses in the front of the helmet. The rear latch uses a scissor mechanism to pull the two sides of the chin bar assembly together, while the inserts keep everything in place. The clasps are relatively easy to operate, but it takes enough force to open each one that it should be nearly impossible for them to open in a crash.
The inside of the chin bar is nicely padded with thick, adjustable cheek pads and a vented front portion.
In addition to protecting the rider with its in-mold polycarbonate shell, additional coverage is provided in the even of a crash through ice. extended rider protection. Each helmet ships with a hidden ice. sticker with a unique code that first responders can text to get the rider’s vitals.
No Enduro helmet is complete without a camera mount, so the Super 2R includes a breakaway mount that is also removable. The breakaway function allows the camera to pop off in a crash to prevent it from snagging on obstacles and injuring the rider. The simple Velcro strap and reinforced peg and hole in the helmet is very easy to take on and off, yet provides a very firm mount to keep the footage crisp. The mount will fit GoPros right out of the box and should work with most other cameras with the right adapter.
At 736 all in (including camera mount), the Super 2R is still lighter than most DH helmets which should make for a more comfortable long term ride. Clearly, carrying just the Super 2R instead of two different helmets will be much lighter, which should make this a popular helmet for anyone looking for versatile protection with some Enduro flair.
Available in both MIPS and non-MIPS versions, the non-MIPS shown here sells for $200, in 5 different colors.