Bell Moto 9 “ET3” Replica Helmet Product Review
I get asked a lot about helmets and which one is the best to purchase. I always answer with “that’s a tough question to ask”, because there are so many variables when it comes to finding the correct helmet for you. It’s not always so black and white when it comes to testing helmets. Putting the helmet on and seeing if it is comfortable to your head shape is step one, making sure you have the correct sizing is another important aspect of getting the correct helmet, your determined price-point and not to mention what technology (the helmet comes with) that makes you feel safe is another. There is just so much to think about when getting a new helmet. I have more of a round shaped noggin and some helmets just don’t fit my head shape that well, but when I got the chance to test the Bell Moto 9, I was excited as I haven't really got to put that much time inside of one. Until now!
The Eli Tomac replica Bell Moto 9 is an awesome looking helmet (especially if you’re a ET3 fan) and weighs in at 3.1 pounds. Bell uses a “TriMatrix” Composite Shell that is a blend of three materials: carbon fiber, Kevlar and fiberglass. I am crazy about visor adjustment and this visor is the easiest visor to adjust I have her used. There’s no screw under the middle of the visor as this design only uses mounting screws on each side, and those are metal “QuickFlip” fasteners that require no tools. Simply flip out the tab, loosen by hand, adjust the visor up or down and tighten again. Boom! However, I think the best feature about the Bell Moto 9 is the Magnefusion Emergency Release System (MERS). This is another way of saying that it uses magnets instead of snaps, and it’s like finding gold! It’s that good! The cheek pads are held in place by several magnets, just like they would be with traditional snaps. From a safety standpoint, these are capable of being removed while the helmet is still on the rider’s head in case of a serious head injury. Many injuries happen, or are made worse, after a crash when some goof ball tries to take the helmet off. Once the cheek pads are off, the helmet can be removed without putting any unnecessary force on the neck and spine. The MERS system is designed to work specifically in conjunction with the Eject Helmet Removal System. There is a foam insert in the top of the helmet which can be removed to make room for the Eject system that every rider must have in a professional AMA/FIM sanctioned event. The Bell Moto 9 is ECE, Snell M2015 and DOT approved.
Now for me I am not a huge fan of the “M” claw, but I do think it’s cool that Bell has a helmet that the normal weekend warrior can purchase to look like Eli. That being said it was tough for me to win any “Best Dressed” awards when I was at the track wearing it, but I was happy with the comfort of the Moto 9. There were no major pressure points that the Moto 9 caused to my head and the liner was plenty soft (although not the softest material I have tried) against my freshly shaved summer time hair do. I do like the cheek pads to push a little against my face for a snug feeling fit and the Bell Moto 9 did just that. I also thought the chin strap and cheek pad magnets held up well against the over abusive test that I gave them. I sat in the back of my truck between motos on several test days and just played with the magnets (snapping them on and off). The strength of the magnet remained strong and didn't get worse over time as held its integrity. Ventilation in these summer months is key for me and the venting on the Moto 9 is one of its strong points. The chinbar has a stainless mesh mouthpiece and vents along the side. Two intakes are tucked under the visor and the top of the eyeport is lined with openings. The rear of the helmet has nine exhaust ports: one directly on top, four on the upper rear, above the goggle strap, two at the base and another pair along the bottom edge. It’s tough to actually feel airflow in most helmets, but with the Bell it was easy to feel a breeze while riding. The weight is on the heavy side while riding and I could feel my neck get slightly more fatigued than with some of the other lighter helmets on the market. However, I will not complain about that too much if it has the protection to back up the weight. I feel like there is a fine line with having a helmet that is “too light” and that leaves me with a sensation of having less protection while I ride. I also like that the nose area of the helmet isn't that close to my large nose and it also doesn't have a mud guard that comes into my face too much. At $400.00 for a replica helmet I would say that is slightly better than other helmet manufacturers out there today. With the reputation that Bell has with safety, I have a good piece of mind knowing that I am wearing a quality helmet, that will give me as much protection necessary when or if I do take a header. I wonder if Josh Hill will hook me up with some type of Monster Energy contract if I wear this at some local races? If I am testing a 2018 Kawasaki you know that I am going to be wearing this helmet! You can go to bellhelmets.com to purchase and check them out for yourself.