Smith Overtake aero road and XC bicycle helmet review and actual weights

I had forgotten that the Smith Overtake was an aero road helmet. It’s looks don’t immediately give it away as such, but as I reviewed our story about its launch last summer, it all came back to me. Considering it looks somewhat normal and has gaping vents, it’s performance in the wind tunnel becomes all the more impressive.

Even so, If I’m completely honest, I wasn’t all that excited to test this helmet. Aesthetically, it’s OK, but the colors didn’t really match much of anything I ever wear. But, the real reason is it looked like it’d be hot. After all, how in the world could air really flow through a bunch of tiny straws pointed perpendicular to the way wind moved over my head?

Turns out it can, and it does…

Smith Overtake aero road and XC bicycle helmet review and actual weights

Smith pioneered the use of Koroyd in their helmets as the primary impact protection material. There’s still some EPS, but most of the helmet’s shell is made up of the tiny plastic tubes. Upon impact, they deform to absorb the force before it all reaches your brain. Zach’s tested it out on their Forefront mountain bike helmets and lived to tell the tale. Fortunately, I haven’t ended up testing that part of the helmet (yet, anyway).

Smith Overtake aero road and XC bicycle helmet review and actual weights

There are a few small front vents that are wide open, situated just above the brow, and one massive exhaust port at the back. Otherwise, all openings are covered with Koroyd, and most of those openings are larger than what’s found on traditional helmets. And much, much larger than anything found on “aero” road bike helmets.

Smith Overtake aero road and XC bicycle helmet review and actual weights

Smith Overtake aero road and XC bicycle helmet review and actual weights

Padding is minimal but well placed. The Overtake is honestly one of the most comfortable and best fitting helmets I’ve tried.

Smith Overtake aero road and XC bicycle helmet review and actual weights

To test my preconceived notions of poor ventilation, I took it to the open road and the mountain bike trails on a few very hot summer days. Yes, it’s a bit warmer than traditional helmets with wide open holes, but not that much warmer. But, to convince myself, I rode along and held my hand over the front vents. Immediately my head got hot. Then I removed my hand, and immediately it cooled right back down. On again, off again. And each time I’d feel the cool, refreshing breeze sweep through as soon as my hand left the helmet. OK, it does breathe well. Surprisingly well, and almost certainly better than any other aero helmet on the market. If there’s a helmet with no compromises, perhaps this is it.

Smith Overtake aero road and XC bicycle helmet review and actual weights

Being a sunglasses company first, Smith had the foresight to make it easily hold their Pivlock shades. The arms snap into place and hold steady.

Smith Overtake aero road and XC bicycle helmet review and actual weights

My size medium came in at 271g, on par with claimed weights. This is for the non-MIPS version, which retails for $250. A MIPS version going to be a bit heavier and is available in five of the 12 color options for $290. All are available in Small, Medium and Large sizes. (I normally wear a medium in Kali, Giro, Specialized, Bontrager, Bell, etc., and this one fit similarly)

Smith Overtake aero road and XC bicycle helmet review and actual weights

The Smith Overtake pleasantly surprised me. It’s very comfortable, fits snugly without any pressure points, and the ventilation does indeed work despite appearances. As for the aero properties, I’ll trust their measurements and stats because at my speeds, it’s maybe saving me half a second. Maybe. My only regret is waiting a few months to start wearing it. That, and I would have preferred just about any other color combo they offer.

SmithOptics.com

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JBikes
JBikes
6 years ago

chimney effect

Collin S
Collin S
6 years ago

I also have this helmet, and I will agree with most everything that was written about it. The thing sits perfectly on my head with zero repositioning, I never have to really crank down on the adjuster on the rear to keep it in the proper location.

The only caveat is the sunglass holder does not work. Yes, if you’re just setting there, its not an issue, but you can’t throw your glasses in while riding and expect them to stay put. I was running a road clinic, my glasses got fogged up, put them in the channels like you did there, and as I’m riding next to one of the students, I’m looking at him giving him instruction when a gust a wind came and made them fall off my helmet. I have the same pivloks as you. Everyone else on my team agrees. Rudy Projects helmets have bug screens on their helmets which make doing the traditional stuff ’em in your vents not possible either, so what they do is put a small loop that allows a nice secure hold. These simply rely on you putting them in properly and the sunglasses tension keeps them on. It is something that Smith needs to improve. Once that is resolved, its a prefect helmet.

Jared
Jared
6 years ago

I tired this helmet and am between sizes. The medium fits on my head fine but is not secure no matter how hard I tighten the adjuster. The large stays planted but is just huge.

badbikemechanicx
badbikemechanicx
6 years ago

According to the mountain bike community this is a very thermal hot helmet which is why nobody bought em

bub
bub
6 years ago

Go safe, so then large

Steve
Steve
6 years ago

I bought the MIPS version of the Overtake and am disappointed to find the MIPS liner completely blocks the very brow vents you talk about. Moving my hand in front and away makes no difference because there is no air moving into the vets at all. It makes the helmet ridiculously hot. I will either return it for the less safe version or cut the MIPS.

Cowtown Cyclist
Cowtown Cyclist
6 years ago

It’s funny, my own experience is that this helmet is way hotter than any of my traditional helmets on a hot day when I’m moving. That is also the opinion of every other person I know who has used it and all the other reviews I have read. It makes a great winter helmet when the temperatures are below 0 C though. Is Smith that big an advertiser on this site?

Philip
Philip
6 years ago

Well Product looks great!! Nice change from a Giro, but their customer service wins an award for being the worst.
They are politely arrogant and extremely unhelpful, that’s when you want to place an order — who know what will happen if you have some sort of problem