ARAI RAM-X 3/4 HELMET WHAT IT IS:
For more than three decades, Arai has been a pioneer in helmet design and fit for more comfort and safety. The new Arai Ram-X 3/4 helmet is a complete upgrade from the original SZ open-face sport helmet, which was born in 1988, and it’s much more advanced than the Arai Classic M. Where the Classic M has three snaps for a visor or shield and four open-closed top vents, the new Ram-X has a five-vent system like the Corsair-X road-racing helmet and the VAS-Z Pro Shade System. It raises the bar on open-faced touring helmets for UTVs and street riding.
The Arai Ram-X 3/4 helmet has a completely redesigned shell and shield system. The shell is an intermediate oval for a better fit, and it’s streamlined along the Snell test area at the temples. The VAS-Z shield system stands for Variable Axis System, and it has a new cover that’s smaller and lower than the one on the Corsair-X. This allows the shell to be 24mm wider for more comfort while still allowing the stronger shell to have glance-off ability upon impacts (in our case, with cage tubes).
The inner liner is a high-tech, one-piece, multi-density EPS unit that allows a thinner and softer liner for a smaller overall helmet. The Ram-X also has the option of thicker or thinner check pads and interior liners for a custom fit, and the cheek pads have a removable foam piece at the top of the ear cup for wearing glasses. Pads are removable from the cheek pads for better cleaning, and ear pockets have molded recesses for speakers.
The Pro Shade system is also high-tech with a large clear shield with three-position detents in the pivots. A smaller tinted shield also has three-position detents for quick adjustments. The clear shield has offset pins for attaching the VAS-Z pinlock-120 fog-resistant lens, and it has two adjustable vents to assist the ventilation system. Three front vents have air scoops and three-position adjusters. The scoops blend into a rear stabilizer wing and have two adjustable exhaust ports. There are also two bottom exhaust ports.
Fiberglass construction with newly developed Z-compound resins delivers a strong shell with light weight. More than 20 precisely cut Super Fiber glass pieces are accurately placed by shell experts, and shells also have a non-woven AR mat for lightness. Zylon mats are placed in the crown for anti-penetration and tensile strength. Interior materials include plush-brushed nylon, dry-cool for moisture and heat-wicking, and anti-microbial for a fresh smell.
The Ram-X comes in XS, S, M, L, XL and XXL in Modern Gray, Gun Metallic Frost, Fluorescent Yellow, Diamond White, Black Frost, Aluminum Silver and Diamond Black paint. We got a Diamond White in XXL for testing, and it weighs 3.6 pounds, a half-pound heavier than an XXL Classic M.
WHO’S IT FOR?
Anyone who wants the utmost protection, fit, comfort and performance from their helmet.
The Pro shield locks in the down position, so you have to hook your left thumb under it to open. In the closed position without the Pinlock-120 lens, it will fog from breath pretty easily when stopped. At speed, it has to be really cold to fog from breath. Installing the Pinlock-120 lens requires taking off the Pro shields; each side has two release buttons for quick removal. Arai suggests straightening the clear shield to install the Pinlock-120 on the inside. It takes patience and a steady hand to reinstall the Pro shield system on the Ram-X, but it’s not done very often.
Fit, comfort and venting are all awesome. We tested the Ram-X against the Classic M, and the new Arai blows the old one away in comfort and venting capability. The air scoops and larger vent holes do a much better job of drawing cool air into and expelling hot air from the helmet. The two-shield system is also very impressive and easy to adjust for light and weather conditions, but dust fowls the VAS hinges easily, deducting a rating star. The lack of a chin bar lets more air in with the main shield raised halfway or all the way.
While the MSRP is pretty high at $679.95, the Ram-X is $300 cheaper than the Corsair-X, and it is about twice as much as the Classic M. It’s also twice as comfortable and advanced, and ventilation is many times more efficient. Optics through the main shield are excellent with zero distortion, and the tinted shield also has great optics. While the Pro shield and Pinlock-120 shield are hard to install (the shield must be fully open), the functions on the helmet are excellent. Care must be taken when cleaning after dusty rides, as dust gets on both sides of both lenses. The instruction booklet also has the procedure for removing the ear cups and chin-strap covers for cleaning with shampoo or soap. Having pockets for radio speakers also increases function for UTV use. We’re very impressed with the Arai Ram-X.
See UTV Action’s UTV Helmet Guide here: https://utvactionmag.com/buyers-guide-lowdown-upside-utv-helmets/