The Neotec represents the latest/greatest modular helmet technology from Shoei. It’s riddled with features such as a drop-down sun visor, a crystal-clear, fog-free pinlock shield, a dual-layer EPS liner to protect your melon, and Shoei’s superior liner setup, to keep said melon comfortable. In short, the Neotec offers first-class performance plus a fit-and-finish we’ve come to expect from Shoei.
An oversized button at the chin operates the spring-loaded mechanism that clasps and releases stainless steel locking pins to operate the flip-up action. Big, easy-to-operate vents (borrowed from this helmet’s full-face close-cousin, the Shoei GT-Air) make this helmet a great option for long trips through warm weather – letting a substantial amount of air in even with the chin-bar locked securely in place.
You can find modular helmets with most of the features of the NeoTec for a third of the price. Are they too good to be true? They are. The Bell Revolver, for example, is $199 and it’s on our black list. (Sorry, Bell.) It’s clunky, flexy and loud, and when we had a customer come back with a helmet that “opened” all the way—that is, the entire jaw piece opened up so far it came disconnected from the helmet, in routine operation—we fired it.
Instead, we’ve settled on a couple options from Shoei and Schuberth to fill the modular category. A primary advantage for the Shoei here is the precision of the fit. The Neotec is offered in seven different colors with three shell sizes: the smallest for sizes XS, S, and M; a middle size for L; and the largest shell size for XL and XXL. And within each of those shells we can up-size or down-size the cheek pads and/or center pad independently. These pad sets normally cost about $50/set but working with Shoei we’re able to offer custom pad options from the start, at no extra cost.
Is this helmet safer than others in its class? Yes – it’s got a dual-layer EPS liner and superior hardware to keep the helmet closed in a crash.
But Captain Safety says: it’s still a modular. And in the perfect, worst-case-scenario “woodpecker” crash (by which one propels one's face beak-first into an immovable object, such as the ground, or the A-frame of a Cadillac Escalade), we're left with the sobering fact that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link, and all modular helmets are inherently not as safe as a full-face option.
That said, among other modulars the Neotec is a best-in-class winner. Just see the BMW MOA review (acknowledged as the most persnickety touring product reviewers of all time) at this link.
Pricing note: Like all Shoei products this one is 10% off the standard MSRP. Same price as anywhere. Plain Black and White are considered the base colors, and all other options (even matte black) incur a slight upcharge for the more expensive paint and time/process it takes to apply it.
Fit: Intermediate Oval – see size chart
Safety Rating: DOT only (it’s a modular)
Made in Japan