Troy Lee Designs Introduces the New A1 All Mountain Helmet


Troy Lee Designs has a long history in the world of two wheels. They have a huge (and successful) Supercross team and have been one of the most popular brands for the freeride and DH set. Their apparel and protection products have always had great style. I had the opportunity to talk to Stikman (aka Craig Glaspell, main man of the TLD Bicycle Division) at Interbike and he said (much to my suprise) that their most popular bicycle market is really the All Mountain/Enduro type rider. They have several new products coming for 2013 and the all new A1 All Mountain Helmet has arrived. There has been lots of buzz in the Mtbr forums about what kind of features this new lid would have, now we know.

It has some of the most cutting edge venting technology and will work with either goggles or sunglasses. It will come in two colors, including a Limited Edition Gold Metal Flake that is super flashy. It also has a more subtle black motif. It will be available early next month and MSRP is $165 ($185 for the Limited Edition).

Read on for the official info.

30 years of riding. 3 years of design. 1 helmet of choice.

Troy Lee Designs is proud to officially introduce the newest addition to our growing line of bicycle specific helmets, the A1.

With the freeride, downhill and BMX helmet market cornered, Troy Lee Designs decided it was time to venture into new territory. Three years of research and design later, the team has developed a top of the line helmet for the XC/Enduro, Trail, and All Mountain rider.

Like all other TLD helmets, the A1 has undergone rigorous safety tests to ensure that it provides superior protection, exceeding CPSC standards and CE EN certifications, while still weighing an average of 320 grams and allowing for maximum ventilation.

Other features of the A1 helmet include an easily adjustable visor, strap dividers and adjusters, a unique adjustable TLD retention system, and anodized aluminum hardware.

Built with moto inspired components and world famous graphics, the A1 upholds the Troy Lee Designs iconic vision that has been a prevalent staple of the bicycle industry for years.

A limited first-run quantity of the helmet in Limited Edition Gold Metal Flake Cyclops ($185 MSRP) and Black Cyclops ($165 MSRP) Colorways will be available for purchase at and at finer dealers worldwide beginning on February 4, 2013. The helmet will be available in XS-2XL.

Photo Thumbnails (click to enlarge)

A select group of media and Troy Lee Designs global distributors were recently given the opportunity to test the helmet on downhill and cross country rides with TLD athletes Cam Zink, Brandon Semenuk, Logan Peat, Aaron Gwin, Eliot Jackson, and Leigh Donovan. The outpour of praise about the new helmet could not have been better.

“I have more mountain bike trail riding in my roots than I do freeriding, so I have been wanting a TLD trail helmet forever! Really happy with how this A1 turned out, will be putting a lot of miles in with it.”
– Cam Zink FMB Tour Hero

“Coming from an XC background I understand the importance of a vented helmet and since I’ve moved into Freeride, I only trust a helmet with lots of coverage. The A1 gives me that light, breathable design without being concerned about safety.”
– Brandon Semenuk 2X FMB World Champion

“I first heard about the A1 project a year ago and have been eagerly awaiting it since. And the team at TLD did not disappoint. It fits like a glove, protects my dome better than any other trail lid, and looks as good as the rest of the Troy Lee helmet line. If I had to sum it up in one word? Dialed.”
– Lars Sternberg, Transition Bikes/Enduro Racer

“I have come full circle with Troy Lee Designs. I had one of those sweet Edge helmets in the early 90’s, with a TLD sticker kit! I have been wanting a helmet to ride in that was more protective than all the other helmets on the market, which are just glorified road helmets with a visor. I think we nailed it with the A1. We catered to the heart of the market, which is that mid to big travel trail rider, enduro rider, or even cross country rider, with a helmet that is extremely safe, elegant, stylish, light and built to last.”
– Stikman, Troy Lee Designs Bicycle Athlete Manager

See photos from the ride days in our A1 Ride Day Gallery.

About Troy Lee Designs:
For 30 years, Troy Lee has been customizing helmets “For The World’s Fastest Racers.” TLD’s relentless commitment to creating products that exceed the cutting edge of style, design and quality, has earned them the reputation as an innovator in many different fields of racing. Troy Lee Designs has since expanded into a full force operation, offering a complete line of helmets, apparel and premium protection for off-road motorcycling and bicycling, as well as seasonal lines of sportswear and accessories. Based in Corona, California, Troy Lee Designs has a global network of distributors.

About the author: Gregg Kato

Gregg Kato studied journalism and broadcasting in college while working many different jobs including deejaying, driving a forklift and building web sites (not all at the same time). Kato enjoys riding local Santa Cruz trails. Besides being an avid mountain biker, he is also a motorcycle fanatic. Two wheels, one Passion.

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  • Jeff says:

    Whoohoo- just what we need! Super overpriced and flashy helmets moving from the world of DH into XC!

  • Fuzzy Dunlop says:

    Pardon the pun, but I just can’t get my head around the idea that I’m paying $200 for a piece of ergonomically shaped styrofoam. Marketers seem to have convinced riders that a foam composite helmet that retails for $185 is inherently better than one that retails for $60. Aside from the (completely non-functional) sparkly plastic outer layer, what exactly are they doing to add $120 to the value of the helmet? I think I’ll stick with my 15-year-old, $70 Pro Tec multi-fall helmet.

    • Brian Mullin says:

      Fuzzy – First off, any helmet of any design has a shelf life (usually three to five years), and yours is way past it’s prime, so I might suggest a new one? Helmets have gotten silly expensive, but many of them do incorporate better venting, features, retention systems, and some (like POC) actually have advanced in-shell and composite constructions (like multi density EPS). Is a helmet worth $185? What price do you put on your noggin?

      • Dan says:

        You hit the nail on the head, a helmet is only good for a couple of years and I get a new one every three years. Also when I worked in a shop, I would always ask people what is your head worth to you and most would buy the cheapest helmet we had. You don’t have to buy the most expensive helmet but please don’t buy the cheapest.

    • ThreeTwo says:

      You folks doubting the A1, questioning its safety, and weather or not it is worth the price have NO IDEA WHAT YOU ARE SAYING. How can you honestly make a judgement by pictures on a computer. NONE of you have used/held/touched/felt/rode in it.

      Do you honestly think TLD would make a cheap/cheesy product. TLD products speak for themselves, period.

      When the helmet is released, go to your dealer, read the product manual, call TLD sales team, ask questions. Better yet buy one and shred in it….then you can talk.

  • madsedan says:

    I’ll pick it up on closeout for $80 in the fall from an online vendor but no way in hell I can swing that kind of cheddar for a helmet. It may look cool but I can’t see it when I’m wearing it lol

  • Fuzzy Dunlop says:

    Brian, that’s true, helmets do have a shelf life, notably foam composites. Mine is plastic, has no cracks in it, and has never suffered any hard falls. The only part of it that can really wear out is the foam liner, which can harden over time, but that’s easily replaceable. I’ve had the helmet inspected in several LBS’s, and none have ever suggested it need replacing. I can understand there being a need for a lighter helmet with more vents if you’re a TDF-calibre rider, but for the most part I think high-end foam composites are a cash cow for manufacturers. “How much is your head worth?” is the same bit of fear-based adversiting we hear a lot from gear makers. The suggestion is, if you don’t buy X expensive helmet, you’re risking your life. These companies have a captive audience, and they know it.

  • Jeff says:

    Brian- the ” What price do you put on your noggin?” is an oft-used sentiment used to discourage consumers from thinking about what they are buying.

    If the TLD meets the same spec as a $60 helmet, does the extra $120 buy you any more protection?

    I can see that the POC lids are worth more as they use an inherently better material, but really, the TLD looks like a product that is ‘premium’ simply due to price and fancy paintwork.

  • Bigfoot jr says:

    No mention about how this helmet is an improvement over what is currently available.

  • RalphSSter says:

    I currently own the POC lid and paid $200.00 for it because it is the safest helmet out there due to actual research with consultation with sports physiologists and neuroscientists. That being said, the thing is kinda ugly and pretty huge! What we need is for TLD and POC to collaborate on a helmet like that. Can you imagine a POC helmet with TLD graphics painted on it. That would be some noggin’ bling I would pay money for!

    • ti-triodes says:

      And if you wait long enough, even POC’s go on sale. I just picked up a Trabec Race for $105 shipped. I’ve seen the regular Trabec on sale lately for $80. The only difference is more Aramid fibers in the Race helmet. Otherwise, they’re exactly the same, even the weight.

  • Jonah says:

    Not to mention that cycling has the highest rate of head injury out of all sports. That’s right more than boxing, MMA, and Football, so if it’s going to provide better support for my brain (I’m an engineer, my brain is my livelihood) I’m all for it.

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