Catlike is a Spanish brand that makes some of the most recognizable helmets in the pro peloton. They have been making helmets since 1996 and their Whisper and Kompact’o road models are very popular. From their 2013 collection, they are now offering an Enduro style MTB helmet called the Leaf. It follows the Catlike tradition and style with the distinctive round vents.
The Leaf features more coverage in the rear like all enduro/all mountain helmets do. It features 23 air intakes (aka vents), comes in two sizes (MD/ 54-57cm, LG/ 58-60cm) and 4 colors (matte red, matte black, matte lime and matte black/yellow branches). The finish is very nice and the fit is very comfortable with a distinct “airy” feel. The straps come extra long, which is good for adjustability, but you will want to be sure to cut these down once you find the right fit for you (I have not yet trimmed the straps as shown in the pictures).
Like their high end road helmets, Catlike uses a process called InMold, where the outer and inner layers of the helmet are molded to become one piece. According to Catlike, this “increases impact resistance, and improves diffusion of crash energy.” The Leaf also has the same Dual Flow design that the Whisper has to connect the air flow through the helmet front to back. The front 3 vents also have a bug net behind them. Catlike also uses a patented technology called the Airtube System that uses air-filled hollow elastic tubes that create an inner mesh within the helmet. Adjustment is done via a ratchet dial in the back of the helmet basket which is also adjustable up and down.
Perhaps the coolest feature of the Leaf is the adjustable visor that slides forward and back to give you quick and easy adjustability. The movement is only about half an inch, but it is just the right amount and is in the right position to give you better visibility when you are on those head down climbs (or in a lower stance on the downhills).
The movable visor is shown in this short video clip:
Real world weight puts the Catlike Leaf at 320 grams for a size LG. But, possibly topping the adjustable visor feature, is the price. With a street price of $109, the Catlike Leaf is a true bargain!
Official Catlike Leaf description:
“Leaf is the helmet dedicated to the MTB enthusiast… Developed using Catlike technologies, it is one of the best helmets in the MTB market. The D2 visor is included. It can be moved in 2 different positions to maximize personal comfort.”
For more information check out the Catlike website: http://www.catlike.us/
Some additional information can be found at the main Catlike Spanish website: http://www.catlike.es/en/home/