En route to somewhere.
Satisfied with the levels of premium protection it achieved with its Forefront and Overtake helmets, Smith returned to the drawing board to fill more gaps in its helmet line this year. On the road side, it pared down the impressive silhouette of the Overtake to craft the Route MIPS Helmet. Featuring a lighter shell and the added protection of Multi-Directional Impact Protection System (MIPS), the Route MIPS fills the void whether you’re a fixture on the bike paths during rush hour or a recreational cyclist looking for a safe, versatile helmet.
Compared to the Overtake, Smith adds less of its proprietary Koroyd material to the Route, lining the underside of some vents with the material. Resembling the cells of honeycomb, Koroyd is a signature feature of all of Smith’s Aerocore cycling helmets; according to the company, Koroyd compresses upon impact to absorb energy better than In-Mold construction alone. Smith still uses the tried-and-true EPS/polycarbonate In-Mold sandwich to craft part of the Route’s shell, but it adds Koroyd to further reinforce it. In this version, the Swedish technology known as MIPS sits on the inside of the helmet as well. The thin inner basket rotates slightly upon impact in order to minimize the brain-damaging effects of certain impacts while adding a barely perceivable amount of weight to the overall design.
Since you’ll hopefully not be testing the effectiveness of the Route MIPS’ safety features on a regular basis, the everyday ones like ventilation and fit are what will distinguish the helmet from others. Smith demonstrates that while it might be relatively new to the cycling world, it’s known about how to keep athletes comfortable and protected for a while now. The VaporFit dial system makes fit adjustments on-the-go quick and easy, while the 18 vents that constitute the AirEvac ventilation system work to filter air through the helmet for consistent breathability. The soft X-Static liner comes with a Cooling Performance treatment to help it pull moisture away from your skin as quickly as possible while you sweat.
- Lightweight road helmet ideal for commuting or weekend rides
- MIPS technology helps protect against angled impacts
- Adjustable fit system for on-the-go customization
- Network of 18 vents work to keep airflow consistent
- Soft X-Static liner treated to wick moisture quickly
- Item #SMI00F1
- Q & A
- Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share
This helmet is the bomb. Not only is it stylish, but it’s also super protective and well ventilated. I’ve crashed plenty of times in the past, so the MIPS protection gives me an added sense of security. I’ve worn it on every single ride since purchasing it, from quick commutes to work to long rides up a canyon, and it has been awesome to wear!
I like how these helmet sits on my head and its super light weight.
Comfortable but not that convenient
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
- Fit: True to size
I've always used Giro helmets prior to trying the Smith. This Helmet is very comfortable, looks great and gets lots of compliments on the shape and color. There is plenty of air flow through the vents. Construction appears equal if not more solid to GIro products. Mips is new to me and I can't really tell a difference between my helmets with and without it. The only down side to this helmet is you can't store your shades in the helmet which is quite the bummer when you are used to doing so.
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
I've been a smith fan for a very long time and this was my first bike helmet from them. The Route is a very light helmet and gives great ventilation. Hopefully I won't have to test out how well it protects, but the adjustability is easy and fit is spot on. I also have an average sized head. Quality is excellent!
Sizing didn't work for my head shape
- Familiarity: I returned this product before using it
Seems like a good helmet for those with round-shaped heads. For those with oval or oblong head shapes, you better keep looking. I only tried it on out of the box, but the amount of side-to-side movement was enough to keep me from wanting to wear it on a ride. The L was slightly too large, leaving too much space on the sides of my head and allowing for a lot of side-to-side movement. The M barely fit on my head front-to-back, and still had a bit of side-to-side movement. Not the helmet for me, and wish a store near me stocked this so I could've tried it on in-person before ordering...