The LEM Volata helmet offers a comfortable shape, plenty of adjustment and a decent weight for the money. It's well worth a look if you want to go semi-aero on a budget, although ventilation could be an issue as temperatures rise.
- Pros: Adjustment for circumference and height, attention to detail
- Cons: Ventilation will be an issue when it gets hot outside
I was pleasantly surprised when I first wore the Volata, especially as the fit is so good. There is adjustment for the circumference of your head by the usual dial, and the system runs right the way round to your temples. Some cheaper helmets only adjust at the back, so it's good that the LEM allows you to dial in an equal tension pretty much all the way around the helmet. The cradle can also be adjusted in height by five settings as well.
The padding is quite a thick density but it makes for plenty of comfort. You also get a pad added to the rear of the cradle, again not something you always see on top end helmets and it all adds to the value.
The webbing for the straps is well stitched and soft against the skin, but although LEM says that it is reflective I have reservations about how effective it actually is. Directing a light at it highlights the subtle black reflective stickers on the back of the helmet, but the webbing bounced back very little light.
At 272g for this medium size it is about right for a helmet of this price. A Kask Mojito X is double the money but only shaves off 60g, although saying that, holding both side by side it's amazing how much you can notice that 60g.
The Volata is a semi-aero design, which often affects ventilation. It's been okay at this time of year, but as the temperatures have been increasing it has become a little bit on the warm side. I can imagine when we hit spring and summer it might be a little bit overwhelmed, even though it does have quite a few vents at the front and rear, 17 in total.
Some helmets, like the Met Manta Aero, actually feel like they are sucking the air in through the minimal number of vents.
Price-wise, it compares well with a lot of similar helmets. The Cannondale Intake is a similar weight for the same price; Dave found it to have decent ventilation, but the LEM does have height adjustment for the cradle.
The Volata has better ventilation than the Giro Isode MIPS helmet, which is about the same weight, and will cost you another tenner too.
Overall, the LEM Volata does a very good job of delivering a decent semi-aero helmet for £60, but there are some compromises.
For the money there is a lot to like, especially the amount of adjustability for fit, but ventilation could be an issue
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road.cc test report
Make and model: LEM Volata helmet
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
LEM says, "From the peloton to the bike path, the dynamic, sleek, and comfortable Volata road bike helmet pushes you to excel with confidence''and a smile. Known as the 'final sprint' throughout Italian cycling, the Volata enhances your riding experience, helping you find your zone, whether you're cranking for fitness, commuting, or on your next club ride or century tour. With its aerodynamic design, adjustable micro-fit system, and 17 cooling vents, the homestretch is always in sight."
The LEM Volata offers a decent stab at an aero helmet on a budget.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
LEM Tech Integrated™ EPS in-mold technology
17 cooling vents for maximum comfort control
LEM FS2™ Padded Occipital Lobe 5 position height adjustment fit system for custom-fit feel
Lightweight, aerodynamic design
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
For a £60 helmet it is well specced.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Excellent fit and adjustment.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Ventilation isn't the best when the going gets warm.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
When you look at the weight and details it's right on the money for what you should be getting.
Did you enjoy using the product? On the whole, yes.
Would you consider buying the product? No
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
There is a lot to like overall, and the LEM delivers strongly across the board for the money. Ventilation could be an issue in warmer climes though.
About the tester
I usually ride: This month's test bike My best bike is: B'Twin Ultra CF draped in the latest bling test components
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed
Stu knocked out his first road.cc review back in 2009 and since then he's chucked the best part of seventy test bikes around the West Country, a couple of them quite literally! With three alloy and two steel bikes in his fleet he's definitely a metal man (that'll be the engineering background) but is slowly warming to that modern carbon fibre stuff along with fat tyres & disc brakes.
It's not all nostalgia though, after spending the last few years in product design Stu keeps banging on about how 3D printing is going to be the next big thing and he's a sucker for a beautiful paint job too.