An ADV helmet is one that combines the best attributes of an MX helmet and a traditional full-face helmet. In other words, amazing ventilation and sun/roost protection, along with high-speed aerodynamics, and general comfort and practicality. The Arai Tour-X4 does this amazingly well, at least for the most part.
Aside from the extended jaw, its rounded shell keeps with the company’s philosophy that a round shape glances off surfaces, thereby reducing the force of impact. As you’d expect, quality is top level, particularly the paint thickness and lustre. The removable/washable interior material feels luxurious against the skin. Arai’s Facial Contouring System for the cheekpads ensures a snug, super-comfy fit and the 5mm ‘peel-away’ pads allow you to further refine the fit if needed. Built using Arai’s proprietary Special Fibre Laminate material, this is a hefty thing at 1.64kg, but it is so well balanced that all-day comfort is guaranteed.
11 of the 14 vents can be closed.
With a total of 14 intake and exhaust vents (of which 11 are controllable), the Tour X-4 is a breezy dream. The three big jaw vents provide exceptional airflow, and they can be fully closed off, insulating the helmet quite well in the cold. There’s even a retractable chin spoiler for improved air deflection. Another impressive factor is that despite its extreme curvature, the visor displays no visual distortion, and with the included Pinlock anti-fog lens inserted, there’s no issue with fogging either
The Tour is extremely versatile in terms of what kind of helmet you’d like it to be. For aggressive off road riding you can remove the visor and use a pair of goggles. When out on the highway, you could use the plastic blanks fitted to remove the peak and turn it into a more traditional road helmet. While the plastic peak’s aerodynamics are a lot better than an MX helmet’s at highway speeds, the Tour does start to lift a little once you cross 100kph. I find that large windscreens on ADV bikes can mitigate this to a large extent, but the peak is certainly not intended for sustained high speeds on bikes without wind protection.
Retractable chin spoiler deflects air well.
Here’s where the problem arises: Arai visor removal has always been a fiddly affair, but the Tour’s system is downright tedious. You have to remove the two screws on the sides while being careful not to remove the thin plastic screw retainer. This can’t be done by hand, but a coin will work. Reinstallation demands careful alignment of the visor and peak, along with an even tightening of the four screws. Arai doesn’t sell one of those fancy transition-style visors either and a quicker, simpler solution is much needed for the next generation model.
Safety-wise, the Tour is ECE 22-05 rated, but it also complies with Arai’s own internal test regimen which is said to be stricter. Fully handmade, it goes through five different inspections before being deemed fit for sale and it comes as no surprise that this is a very expensive helmet. Rs 60,000 gets you solid colours, while most graphic schemes, like the Catch Red seen here, cost Rs 66,000. This is what you have to pay for a top-tier helmet and the price is between the top-spec RX7v and the midlevel Chaser X.
The Tour-X4 undoubtedly pairs up well with an ADV bike, but pure road riders may find Arais like the Chaser X or QV Pro to be the more appropriate choice
Where: www. performanceracing.in
Price: Rs 66,000