User Generated Review
Smith Forefront Helmet
Words & Photos by Caleb Ely
Looking like something straight out of a Storm Trooper’s closet, the Smith Forefront packs space age tech into a futuristic MTB helmet. Loaded with a list of high end features, one of my favorites is the impressive ventilation thanks to unique venting and the hollow tubular impact absorption material. The Forefront is a fresh take on modern helmet design that balances safety, comfort and breathability.
While the vast majority of helmets rely on EPS foam for impact absorption, Smith engineered a new solution for the Forefront they call Aerocore. The design looks like a hat made of vertically stacked straws that both absorb impact and allow unparalleled amounts of airflow into and out of the helmet. The EPS and Koroyd “straws” absorb impact without the use of MIPS technology or EPS alone. With this design, the placement of vents can be maximized for the best airflow possible without sacrificing safety.
I really enjoy the secure and comfortable fit the Forefront offers. The VaporFit system has a dial adjustment and 5cm of adjustability and movement in all directions at the attachment points. Another neat feature found on more helmets these days is the accessory mounting system. The Forefront comes with two mounts, one for lights and one for a POV camera when you want to film yourself shredding. We do wish however, for the high price of this helmet, the Mount Kit was included instead of being sold separately.
When I first tried on the Forefront, I immediately noticed how light and comfortable it felt. There was ample coverage on the back of the head, offering extra protection. Compared to my previous iXS helmet, the Forefront stepped it up a whole new level with thoughtful and well-designed features. Almost any eyewear fits well with the helmet due to its integrated goggle and glasses systems, and ventilation is second to none.
The helmet fits true to size as my 57cm head is the perfect match for a size medium. When I first put the helmet on I noticed that it sat higher than my old helmet. The Forefront’s Vaporfit adjustment system came in handy, as it allowed me to customize the fit of the helmet precisely to the shape of my head.
I was surprised at just how many vents are built into the forefront. The helmet has 21 vents on paper, yet the unique Aerocore design made the helmet feel like it was much more breathable than other lids I’ve ridden. The Forefront gives any hot air an easy way to escape.
The Wolf’s Last Word
Smith really delivered a great product with this helmet. It’s more than just a unique look and design. We really like their unique look at safety and ways to protect fellow riders. With an impressive list of specs comes an equally impressive price. The Forefront helmet retails for $249– quite a bit more than most trail or enduro helmets you can buy at a bike shop! Despite the price tag, it’s hard to argue that Smith’s quest for safety, innovative tech and fit have all been elevated with the Forefront.
About the Tester
Name: Caleb Ely | Age: 15
I love to race bikes down rocky stuff and ski deep powder. I mostly ride DH and Enduro, but love to send it down fun and flowy jump trails, especially if I built them. If I could have two bikes for the rest of my life it would be a Trek Slash and a Santa Cruz V10. I have worked at a local bike shop in Bend, OR for two years using my knowledge of new products to enhance my testing.
Highly Adjustable Fit
High Tech Safety
Price POV/Light Mount Not Included
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