Budget priced Bell Stratus helmet gets updated

Integrated MIPS liner trickles down from high-end Zephyr model

Helmets Sea Otter Classic

2017 Sea Otter Classic

Bell Stratus

Bell’s Stratus model sits below its top model, the Zephyr. Selling with MIPS for $150, a bit less without, it comes in colors similar to its more expensive brethren. New for 2017 is a slimmer, integrated MIPS liner that reduces the overall size of the helmet.

Bell Helmets is updating its second tier helmet, the Stratus. An integrated MIPS liner trickles down from the top model Zephyr, shaving 3mm from the thickness of the helmet and slimming its overall look. As part of that upgrade, it also gets a better sweat management system. A part of the brow pad extends under the front lip of the helmet to draw moisture away from the rider’s forehead.

Bell Stratus and Zephyr

On the right is the current Stratus. On the left is the current Zephyr. Notice the brow pad that extends to the underside of the helmet’s lip on the Zephyr. This helps keep sweat out of your eyes as you ride. The Stratus will see this update this summer.

You’ll see the new version this summer. It’ll sell for an approachable $150 with MIPS. It will also be available without MIPS for $130, or with MIPS and reflective graphics for $160. Weight is a claimed 295 grams with MIPS, 20 grams less without it.

Bell Helmet Colors

Bell showed off several of the helmet colors it produced for the recent Olympic Games in Rio. Left to right are Italy, the Netherlands, and Belgium. But sorry, these will not be for sale.

Also in the Bell booth were several visual teasers in the form of colors you can’t have. Some visual design concepts were shown, both with ethereal celestial inspirations. For fans of road racing, Bell also displayed several of the helmets it made in country colors for last summer’s Rio Olympics.

This article is part of RoadBikeReview’s coverage of the 2017 Sea Otter Classic in Monterey, California. For more from Sea Otter CLICK HERE.

About the author: Nick Legan

Nick Legan is happiest with some grease under his nails and a long dirt climb ahead. As a former WorldTour team mechanic, Legan plied his trade at all the Grand Tours, Spring Classics, World Championships and even the 2008 Beijing Olympics. In recent years, gravel and ultra-distance racing has a firm grip on Legan’s attention, but his love of mountain biking and long road rides hasn’t diminished. Originally a Hoosier, Legan settled in Boulder, Colorado, 14 years ago after finishing his time at Indiana University studying French and journalism. He served as the technical editor at VeloNews for two years and now contributes to Adventure Cyclist, Mtbr and RoadBikeReview. To follow along on Legan’s cycling adventures, find him on Instagram at @nlegan and be sure to check out his new book Gravel Cycling: The Complete Guide to Gravel Racing and Adventure Bikepacking.

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