Launched on the Isle of Man during the TT build up last week, the new flagship Arai RX-7V offers some significant improvements over the current RX-7GP.
For starters the new PB-SNC² Super Fibre composite shell is 30% lighter than the old shell and has a rounder and smoother shape. It’s designed primarily to ‘glance off’ objects in the event of an accident, rather than snag on anything you may hit. The new improved vents are designed to simply break away as well, rather than causing further injuries by catching on objects as you slide and tumble. The new Variable Axis System (VAS) means the visor mounts have been made 24mm lower than they were; this also helped the designers in their quest for a smoother stronger shell. Like all Arai helmets, the RX-7V is built to protect above and beyond the current standards, Arai don’t design their helmets just to pass a drop test in specific areas though (some helmet manufacturers products are strengthened specifically at the points where the tests are carried out) Arai build their helmets to be as strong as possible all over and they test to the stringent American Snell standards.
The Arai visor removal mechanism was ready for an update; the old system was fiddly and took some getting used to. The new RX-7V visor pods can by released very easily using the two tabs, they pop off easily and the visor can be changed in less that a minute, even during the first few tries. It’ll get quicker with practice so I expect that time can be halved. Certainly a more user-friendly design than the last one. The visor locks in the closed position as well and has a new latch to open it, it can be opened with one finger. The helmet also comes equipped with a Pin Lock visor insert to prevent fogging.
The plush interior features an Eco Pure liner with slimmer frame, the cheek pads can be custom fitted by simply removing or adding layers of foam. There’s also a chin curtain to keep the wind out and help quieten things. The chin bar is 3mm further away from your face as well. The interior is removable and can be washed.
Straight out of the box the helmet felt comfortable, certainly different to my Arai Tour X-4, I had to remove one layer of foam to make that one fit properly and the lining itself doesn’t feel as comfortable as the RX-7V. I only had a quick 15-minute session around Jurby on the Isle of Man during the launch and the helmet felt as comfortable as it could from a new lid. Obviously 15 minutes isn’t really a good test for noise, visor seal, vents etc. but luckily I’ve got a 3,000 mile road trip across Europe coming up later this week so I will certainly be splattering various flies, insects and arachnids over the next two weeks and will bring you an update when I get back.
Prices start at £599.99 for plain colours, race replicas are also available, for more information visit www.whyarai.co.uk