Spotted: New Bontrager Velocis helmet

Lighter, cooler, and worn by RadioShack-Leopard at the Tour

NICE, France (VN) — Bontrager says its new Velocis helmet, which debuted on the heads of the RadioShack-Leopard team at the start of the Tour de France, is its lightest, coolest, and most comfortable ever.

The helmet replaces the Oracle at the top of Bontrager’s range, and utilizes a similar fit system, but an entirely new shell and strap design.

Bontrager says it has focused on the helmet’s internal channeling in an effort to improve heat management. A polycarbonate inner shell and composite skeleton provide “an incredibly stable structure” for the helmet, allowing Bontrager engineers to use larger, carefully placed venting to both improving cooling and decrease weight without compromising safety.

Bontrager included a thick brow band, dubbed FormFit, and left a gap between the band and the helmet’s foam structure to provide space for the front of the padding to conform to a rider’s forehead.

The strap material is similar to the ribbon used on Giro’s light helmets, and helps bring the Velocis down to 229 grams for a side medium.

Not present here at the Tour, at least not that we’ve seen, is the optional NeoVisor, a removable visor intended to replace the cycling cap, protecting the eyes from the elements. It locks in behind the brow band with no effect on the helmet’s fit, according to Bontrager.

Availability is set for September 2013 in Europe, and in the U.S. by the end of the year. Retail price has not yet been set.