Scott Cadence Plus review$320.00

Fast and airy aero lid

BikeRadar score4.5/5

The Cadence Plus is Scott’s aero road helmet solution. Its polycarbonate shell completely covers the vulnerable EPS core, apart from inside the vents, and its smooth, elongated shape and mostly enclosed shell look purposeful.

The occipital cradle of Scott’s Halo Fit System has three heights and circumference adjustment is via a rotary dial. A clever separator keeps the straps far apart so they don’t clash with your ears, all helping to make the Cadence Plus one of the best fitting and most secure helmets I’ve tried recently. While the price for a top-flight lid with MIPS [Multi-directional Impact Protection System] additional protective technology is good.

To prevent brain freeze in cold weather, Scott supplies winter bungs, essentially cross sections of helmet

Five generous front vents align with wide internal channels, there’s another small vent above each temple and three angular exhaust ports at the rear. The MIPS cradle is extensively perforated to maximise cooling, which is important since it’s in direct contact with the head.

At almost any speed and head angle there’s a remarkable throughflow of air and although I haven’t ridden one on a hot mountain climb, it compares very favourably with similar helmets that I have.

To prevent brain freeze in cold weather, Scott supplies winter bungs, essentially cross sections of helmet. Full thickness EPS foam segments topped with polycarbonate shell fit snugly into the five main vents, creating a totally smooth profile, extra warmth and more speed. The temple vents, inner brow channels and rear ports still provide some airflow for comfort.

Scott says in a head-on wind tunnel test at 40kph with 20-degree head tilt, the Cadence Plus performs better aerodynamically than any of its current competitors, but manufacturers rarely agree on test protocols. Tested with open vents, it’s apparently a fraction of a second quicker over 40km, rising to five seconds with the bungs fitted.

In the real world, it looks slick and feels fast, with no wind noise and a satisfyingly compact shell. Our large size weighs 353g, or 380g including the bungs, which useful as they are, aren’t something you would carry just in case as they need almost a whole pocket and can only be fitted or removed with the helmet off. But so long as you decide in advance, they do extend the helmet’s versatility.

This article was originally published in Cycling Plus magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.

Robin Wilmott

Tech Writer, Tech Hub, UK,
Robin began road cycling in 1988, and with mountain bikes in their infancy, mixed experimental off-road adventures with club time trials and road races. Cyclocross soon became a winter staple, and has remained his favourite form of competition. Robin has always loved the technical aspect of building and maintaining bikes, and several years working in a good bike shop only amplified that. Ten years as a Forensic Photographer followed, honing his eye for detail in pictures and words. He has shot at the biggest pro events since the '90s, and now he's here, drawing on all those experiences to figure out what makes a bike or component tick.
  • Age: 45
  • Height: 178cm / 5'10"
  • Weight: 75kg / 165lb
  • Discipline: Road, cyclocross, time trials
  • Beer of Choice: Sierra Nevada Pale Ale

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