Just In: Troy Lee Designs A1 Enduro Helmet


Long known for their full face helmets and style, Troy Lee Designs recently announced their big re-entry into the Enduro/All Mountain/Trail category with a new helmet called the A1. We have just received the helmet in the Mtbr offices for testing. This is a quick look at the style and features of what promises to be a popular choice for 2013.

Like other All Mountain style helmets, the A1 offers more protection than a traditional XC lid by offering more coverage in the back (like a BMX or skate style helmet). But the A1 goes beyond that with a helmet that is more a cross between an XC helmet and a full face helmet. The A1 will work with glasses or goggles and is targeted at the Enduro/Super-D type racer or rider.

It currently comes in two color options: Limited Edition Gold Metal Flake for $185 or the Black Cyclops scheme for $165. The helmet will be available in 3 sizes covering XS/S (54-56cm), M/L (57-59cm) and XL/XXL (60-62cm).

The first thing that grabs your attention (like most TLD products) is the style. Even though we have the more subtle color option of the two available, the A1 still has very flashy graphics. The little fin in the back is a Troy Lee design that harkens back to the “speed” fins he put on Supercross and Superbike helmets back in the day (in the moto world). In fact, if there is one word to describe the A1, it is “moto”. Even the visor and it’s adjustability and function are straight off of moto lids (albeit with smaller screws).

Troy Lee Designs A1 helmet features:

  • Extra think comfort lining with anti microbial nano-wick materials.
  • Full spectrum adjustable visor with +/- 1″/25mm range of motion
  • Anodized aluminum hardware
  • Versatile all terrain design
  • Multi position cam lock adjustable rear stabilizer with +/- 20mm movement
  • 6 pressurizing intake passages
  • 6 rear vacuum vortex outlets
  • Aerospace filament reinforced shell liner
  • TLD breathable helmet bag included
  • Accessory sticker kit included

The total of 16 vents on the A1 look like they will offer plenty of cooling for an enduro style helmet. Besides the cool vented bag and sticker kit, the helmet also comes with a user’s manual and emergency contact/info sticker.

Dialing in the proper placement and alignment of the A1 is not as easy as some other helmets, but once you get it set, the fit is secure. Speaking of fit, if you normally ride a large size helmet, you should be sure to try this helmet on in person. I normally wear a large helmet, but I found the M/L size to be a bit of a tight fit on the sides. Sadly, I will be passing this helmet off to another reviewer with a smaller noggin for our long term test (unless I can get my hands on an XL)!

While the price has been a major bone of contention with some Mtbr readers, it may help to remember that with any TLD product, you are paying a premium for the name, style and quality. The finish on this helmet is top notch from the adjustable visor down to the red ano screws.

Real world weight on the official Mtbr scale put our size M/L at exactly 340 grams.

For a list of other possible helmets in the same category, read the next page>>

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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  • Crzymd says:

    I haven’t seen anything really revolutionary about the A1 helmet. It doesn’t look any different to me than a POC, or Fox Flux. It looks very similar to the previous Shoei TLD RC-3 TL Comp helmet that was released several years ago. Seems to me, they took a regular style AM helmet, put some graphics on it, a TLD sticker on it, almost doubled the price and throw it on the market as something new! Not impressed.

  • digitale says:

    If you’ve ever owned a TLD full-face you’ll know the quality and fit is noticeably above and beyond most mtb-specific full-face helmets(I’ve owned or tried). If this holds true for the A1 in comparison to other AM helmets I think TLD will have another winner on their hands.

  • dthmnky says:

    i’ll wait to compare it to the bell super.

  • Fuzzy Dunlop says:

    The TLD A1 Enduro looks functionally identical to the Fox Flux I just bought for $60, to the point that I wonder if both helmets came from the same Chinese factory. My Flux doesn’t have an ornately printed plastic outer shell, or anodized aluminum screws. What exactly have TLD done to set the A1 apart from the Flux, apart from spending more on branding and using the world’s most expensive ($125!) screws?

  • Yrg says:

    Look at Kali. Better construction, better protection,less money. Troy lee makes quality but not top quality

  • lanzalou says:

    Without a shadow of a doubt, the most comfortable mtb helmet I have ever worn (in the 20 years I’ve been riding). Looks good, protects your bonce, and yeah, it’s expensive… but get your hand in your pocket, you can’t take your pennies with you!!

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