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Nolan N53 Off-Road Helmet | Product Evaluations

I’D BEEN ENTHUSIASTICALLY awaiting the arrival of the Nolan off-road lids so when Grant Sammut from Ron Angel flicked me one, I headed out for a ride straight away.

THE BILL $299.95
BLOWER (03) 9464 3366

The first thing you’ll notice is the weight. Nolan prides itself on producing quality lids at a fraction of the weight of others. This particular model is a bee’s dick over one keg, coming in at 1.2kg.

I’d never ridden with a helmet this light so it took some getting used to. I’ve been Bell and Fox protected for the best part of three years, and those helmets, while excellent, are heavier than the N53. I felt naked.

So far I’ve used EKS, Fox and Scott goggles with the helmet and have had no issues with the goggle port being too small. The helmet padding is comfortable but a downside of a lightweight lid is that there is slightly less padding so it’s a less comfortable fit.

The helmet still feels like a cloud on my head, but the forehead foam isn’t as thick as other brands and is not quite as soft, while the padding doesn’t mould to the contours of my head like lids with thicker padding.

The fabric did a decent job at keeping the sweat out of my eyes, which was surprising considering there are no adjustable vents. There are two above the eyes that are always open but they aren’t massive or up high on the helmet where most manufacturers put them.

The lid straps to your head with the simple D-ring system, and the loose end of the strap clips to a buckle. I’d like to see more manufacturers adopt magnets for this flapping strap like the one Bell uses.

The outer shape of the Nolan looks aggressive with big grooves to keep the goggle strap where it needs to be, while the colour scheme is very Euro-esk. The weight is the selling point (your neck and shoulders will thank you) but the final factor to clench the deal is the price. And if you’re happy to run flat black it’s even cheaper at $249.95.
Editor Mitch Lees

See the full feature in ADB issue #450