The Kask Protone was spotted on the heads of Team Sky at the Tour de France – and now BikeRadar has got hold of the UK’s only prototype model.
Pitched as a more aerodynamic vented helmet, Kask says the Protone has among the fastest heat dissipations and lowest drag co-efficients of any ventilated helmet. This means it’ll be going up against a new slew of aero-ish helmets such as the Giro Synthe, Bell Star Pro and Smith Overtake. The Proton will command a premium £195 / €235 / US$299.95 price tag when it goes on sale in January.
Rather than the more obvious shielded top of Kask’s own Infinity or the Giro Air Attack, the Protone was designed with CFD and validated in wind tunnel tests to cheat the drag thanks to a narrow profile and clever aerodynamic shaping – as seen with the smoothly rounded rear section.
Kask says the helmet was benchmarked against the finest aero road lids on the market and came out on top, but it isn’t offering any stats to back that up as yet.
The Protone has eight vents on the front – the centre five being split in two by a central plastic shelf – and six on the back, where there’s also a reflective strip. It’s also the first helmet to feature the new Kask logo.
The retention system isn’t new (it’s the same as the Infinity) but it’s easy to use and has plenty of adjustment, while the forehead pads are particularly plush. Kask says the padding, which is removable and washable, features larger ventilation holes to reduce head-to-pad contact by 70 per cent compared with the competition.
Kask has used its ‘Multi In-Moulding’ fabrication process for the Protone, in which a polycarbonate cover for the top, base ring and back of the helmet’s shell is joined to the inner polystyrene cap to improve the shell’s shock absorption. A strengthened frame also reduces the risk of the shell breaking in an accident according to Kask.
At 250g for our medium version (exactly the weight on the helmet’s sticker), the Protone’s not going to weigh you down. The medium fits 48-58cm with the large catering for 59-62cm heads.
This prototype will have a few cosmetic clean-ups on the shell for mass production, when it’ll be available in a total of 12 shades (see gallery).
Stay tuned to BikeRadar for a review in the coming weeks.