Smith Forefront all-mountain helmet launched

Koroyd protection technology brought over from snowsport helmets

Smith Optics has launched its first riding helmet, the US$220 (UK pricing TBA) Forefront all-mountain model. The most notable feature is a synthetic honeycomb polymer called Koroyd, which allows for airflow and – according to Smith – absorbs up to 30 percent more energy than a traditional EPS helmet design in a crash.

Smith started making snow helmets seven years ago, and recently began using the German Koroyd material for ski and snowboard lids. The company claims that it and POC are the only brands in wintersport using the technology.

Koroyd is a German material Smith has worked with in its snowsport helmets

Smith does use EPS foam in addition to the Koroyd in the Forefront, which weighs a claimed 285g. The helmet also features Smith’s new adjustable fit system, dubbed VaporFit, plus an inte­grated camera and light mounting area, and a goggle retention strap.

Three sizes and 10 color options will be available.

The smith optics forefront is designed for trail and all-mountain use, providing extra coverage around the sides and back of your head while still maintaining a trim profile:

Designed for AM use, the Forefront provides coverage on the sides and back of the head

“In our effort to reduce volume and weight while increasing ventilation and impact protection for ski and snowboard hel­mets, we came across Koroyd,” said Eric Carlson, Smith's VP of product and design. “After a full year of testing we were able to gather massive amounts of impact data and design flexibility that made an innovative Smith bike helmet project possible.”

The new Smith Forefront helmets will be available at North American retailers in spring 2014. Information about UK and worldwide releases will be published on BikeRadar as soon as we receive it.

Smith expects to follow the Forefront with road and other helmets in a year.

Despite the seemingly endless array of sharp edges, the interior of the forefront is surprisingly comfortable, even on a shaved head:

The interior of the helmet is comfortable, even on a shaved head

Ben Delaney

US Editor-in-Chief
Ben has been writing about bikes since 2000, covering everything from the Tour de France to Asian manufacturing to kids' bikes. The former editor-in-chief of VeloNews, he began racing in college while getting a journalism degree at the University of New Mexico. Based in the cycling-crazed city of Boulder, Colorado, with his wife and two kids, Ben enjoys riding most every day.
  • Discipline: Road (paved or otherwise), cyclocross and sometimes mountain. His tri-curious phase seems to have passed, thankfully
  • Preferred Terrain: Quiet mountain roads leading to places unknown
  • Current Bikes: Scott Foil Team, Trek Boone 5, Specialized S-Works Tarmac SL4, Marinoni fixed gear, Santa Cruz Roadster TT bike
  • Dream Bike: A BMC Teammachine SLR01 with disc brakes and clearance for 30mm tires (doesn't yet exist)
  • Beer of Choice: Saison Dupont
  • Location: Boulder, CO, USA
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