The Abus Aventor is an extremely well-ventilated, light and comfortable helmet. Well suited to most genres of road riding, it's bristling with the features and safety spec we've come to expect from this price point. That said, my one minor gripe is that the polycarbonate shell doesn't run around the rim's circumference.
- Pros: Light, extremely airy helmet that I've barely noticed
- Cons: Exposed rim is disappointing at this price point
First and foremost, the Aventor is extremely unobtrusive, in every respect. A size 54cm helmet is pretty much default for me, but the Aventor looks a lot smaller, which has been a bonus out on the road: I've not been conscious of its perimeter, when glancing left to right or over my shoulder.
Formative testing coincided with 'The Beast from The East' weather front. Thankfully everything from 'Belgian' caps (with button tops, see below) through to cycling-specific balaclavas such as this one from Northwave were completely compatible. Some can catch or gather annoyingly, but that's not been the case here.
Just as well, too, given the vents really do ram a seamless current of cooling air inside – probably perfect for balmy summer days but synonymous with painful 'ice cream' headaches at minus five.
Those 28 vents work to the tried and tested inlet/exhaust system: inlet at the front scoop cooling air through when you're cruising along, the exhaust ensuring unwelcome heat gets channelled out when you're crawling up a climb.
Even when the mercury's sliding, my generous thatch can leave me feeling uncomfortably warm when wearing anything thicker than a trade cap; Belgian cap donned, averaging 20-23mph for two hours, I've never returned with my hair matted against my face.
It's less common these days, but wind noise can be a trade-off with some very airy models, hampering conversation and general road awareness. I'm pleased to confirm this hasn't been the case. Hammering down sweeping 1-in-7s at 35mph, there's a very subtle 'hiss', but for the most part I've been able to hold convivial conversations on group rides.
It's an in-mould construction – where EPS liner and polycarbonate shell are formed together – conforming to CE1078 standards. It also incorporates an 'ActiCage', which Abus describes as 'Structural reinforcement integrated into the EPS to optimize stability', but unlike some at this price point it doesn't include Mips technology.
The road styling, though sharp and angular, is still subtle enough to complement more relaxed technical wear and less traditional tarmac-biased machines. Trade cap beneath and it's perfectly wearable off the asphalt, although think gravel/green lanes rather than high-speed singletrack shenanigans.
It also comes in matt black, celeste green, steel blue, polar white and fuchsia pink, if neon yellow doesn't appeal (though I'd say it's a more subtle hue than some, bright rather than garish).
Either way, our sample's glossy finish is beautifully executed and just requires an occasional damp-cloth wipe-over after a bit of mucky rough stuff or just hustling along snowy backroads for several hours.
Fit & adjustability
Inside, we have the usual odour-chomping, sweat-guzzling anti-bacterial pads. These can be whipped off and popped in the wash should things turn too funky – or just bring the lid with you when you're showering.
The 'Zoom Ace' thumbwheel adjuster is extremely precise and a doddle to dial in/adjust – even mid-ride when temperatures can fluctuate and a cap/balaclava prove necessary. Ponytail compatibility is another welcome feature, for me at least.
The chin and Y straps are similarly intuitive.
There's scope for hosting a blinkie round the back, provided its mounting straps are sufficiently long/flexible. I had no problems with the Cygolite Hot Road 50, Infini Sword or the Xeccon Mars 60 pictured below.
High-power helmet lamps also found decent tenure atop, although I've been inclined to park action cameras on the handlebar.
Talking of accessories, the Aventor's front vents also feature an 'eyewear dock': parking space for sunglasses, for when conditions turn overcast or you've just pulled in for a well-earned café stop.
As you can probably tell, I've really warmed to the Aventor's charms and reckon it's a great road helmet. For me, it almost tops the Bontrager Velocis in terms of fit, comfort and performance, but although the Abus is a tenner cheaper, the Bontrager incorporates Mips technology and I would prefer the polycarbonate shell to encompass the rim, even it meant hiking the price by a few quid.
Very good road-biased helmet, aside from the exposed EPS
road.cc test report
Make and model: Abus Aventor Neon Yellow
Size tested: Medium 54-59cm
Tell us what the product is for
Abus says, "The new ABUS Aventor is a unique helmet for demanding road cyclists. It combines innovative design with excellent functions - modern technologies like Forced Air Cooling guarantee maximum ventilation whilst ensuring the helmet remains lightweight. Its fine adjustment system is also suitable for ponytails. The model provides the very latest ABUS safety technology."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Abus lists these features:
* Double shell In-Mold for durable fusion of the outer shell and the shock absorbing helmet material (EPS)
* Ponytail compatibility: Helmet good for people with long hair
* Half-surrounding plastic ring connected to adjustment system
* Lower edge protection: Provides the helmet with additional protection from external influences
* ActiCage: Structural reinforcement integrated into the EPS to optimize stability
* Zoom Ace: Fine adjustment system with handy dial for personalized fit
* Its fine adjustment system is also suitable for ponytails.
* The model provides the very latest ABUS safety technology".
* Weight: 240g
* Adjustment System: Zoom Ace
* Head Ring: Half ring
* Sizes: S - 51-55cm M - 54-59cm L - 58-61cm
* Certification: CE EN 1078
* Features: Eyewear dock, Ponytail compatible, ActiCage
Very well made apart from the EPS exposed around the rim, which was disappointing at this end of the market.
So far nothing stands out, save for the exposed EPS, which could be a weak spot in the longer term.
Literally haven't noticed it. Fit and overall performance has been fantastic.
Extremely airy, fits beautifully and completely unobtrusive.
Good given the spec, but loses a point because of the exposed EPS.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Overall, the Aventor has become my go-to lid for general road biased riding. Its ventilation is precisely as it needs to be – sweeping plenty of cooling air in without being overpowering and yet, when going full-pelt on the descent, wind noise hasn't been an issue.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Pretty much the whole package.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Exposed rim smacks of penny pinching and is hard to justify, especially at this end of the market.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
Lovely road lid that performs incredibly well across the board. In that respect, the price isn't outlandish, although I am less impressed by the exposed rim.
About the tester
I usually ride: Rough stuff tourer based around 4130 Univega mountain bike frameset My best bike is: 1955 Holdsworth Road Path and several others including cross & traditional road
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo-cross, commuting, touring, fixed/singlespeed, mountain biking
Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)