Bell Moto-9 Carbon Helmet (discontinued)

Vital Rating: (Outstanding)
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Bell Moto-9 Carbon Helmet

Rating: Vital Review

This is a great looking lid. From the Hurricane graphic, to the partial clear coat over carbon fiber, Bell has done an excellent job.

Bell has been in moto for a long time…long enough that they were one of the first major helmet brands in the sport, and also one of the first to have a full faced helmet. Can you believe people used to race with open-faced helmets? You old guys were nuts! Anyway, the company has continued to innovate since the introduction of their original motocross lid and Bell most recently introduced the Moto 9 Carbon.

When Bell cam out with the Moto 9, they made some big changes to the overall size and fit compared to the Moto 8, and with the Moto 9 Carbon they went one step further by dropping the weight as well. The size Large we tested weighed in at 3.56lbs.

Aside from the minimal weight and the killer Hurricane graphics scheme, one of the first things immediately noticeable is the shell size. The Moto 9 has a smaller and shorter outer shell than many other high-end helmets (of the same sizing). By shorter I mean that, when worn, the bottom edge of the Moto 9 Carbon does not come down as far past the base of your skull compared to some other helmets. This is not necessarily a good or bad thing, only a different approach to helmet design.

The Moto 9 Carbon has ventilation in spades, both on the front and back of the helmet.

Where the Moto 8 had a very boxy feel to the EPS foam liner, the Moto 9 does not. Instead the Moto 9’s liner fit my head very well with no pressure points to speak of whatsoever. The cheek pads fit slightly more snug than I would prefer, but not to the point of discomfort and once on the track they are completely unnoticeable.

Speaking of the cheek pads, they have one of the coolest new features I’ve seen in a helmet. The typical plastic button-type snaps have been replaced by three magnets (called Magnefusion) on each pad that are more than strong enough to hold the pads in place. However, the big advance/advantage is that the cheek pads can be removed quickly and easily by EMT’s in the event of a serious crash, with virtually no strain on the riders head.

The ventilation channels built into the EPS foam and the integrated Eject Removal System recession increase breathability and safety. The wicking liner with X-Static sewn in help keep your head dry.

Complementing the safety aspects of the Magnefusion cheek pads is a recessed segment at the top of the EPS foam that allows the rider to install Shock Doctor Eject System without any discomfort. One of the venting channels in the foam can double as perfect place for the Eject System inflation tube to sit.

On the track the helmet performs as one should expect a high-end lid to. I often say, “when you don’t notice a item you are trying out, that is usually a good thing” and this was the case with the Moto 9 Carbon. From the get go, I felt right at home in the Moto 9 Carbon. Every goggle I have used with the helmet so far, from standard style to larger outrigger systems, has fit without issue. As a sweataholic, I always pay close attention to how drenched I am when I come off the track. With the Bell, sweat control has so far been a non-issue.

The Flying Bridge Visor uses an easy-adjust system that only requires two screws, which do not require any tools. The venting at front of the helmet shell and integrated into the liner is top notch.

While riding on some of SoCal’s recent warmer and muggy days, I put in some decent length motos and came away impressed by the Moto 9. No sweat dripping down into my eyes, and no overheated head. Thanks to the moisture wicking and silver threaded (yes, SILVER) X-Static antimicrobial and antibacterial material liner, multiple intake and exhaust ports, and venting channels molded into the EPS foam itself, there is an exceptional amount of airflow in the Moto 9.

With all of these awesome features, is there even room for a cherry on top? You bet. Bell put their Magnefusion Technology on the end of the chin strap as well. Again, no plastic snap to deal with. The magnet is strong enough that all you need to do is get the tab within the vicinity of the complementing magnet and it slaps into place. No more fumbling around, trying to find the right spot.

It might be small but it makes a huge difference. The Magnefusion magnets on the cheek pads and strap not add convenience but improve safety as well.

Overall, the Bell Moto 9 Carbon is an excellent lid. It’s breathable, light, has some great new concepts, and the Hurricane graphics are bad ass. What’s not to like? Add in the fully removable and washable liner and innovative visor system (which only uses two securing screws rather than the traditional three), and you have a helmet that is helping to make motocross safer sport.

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Product Bell Moto-9 Carbon Helmet
Price $549.95
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