A Review of the Shoei Multitec motorbike helmets. For reviews of other flip up or modular crash helmets, check out our flip-up helmet reviews area. Or for 4 & 5 Star SHARP Helmet Reviews or All Crash helmets, please click the links!
Summary. The Shoei Multitec is a well-built, easy to use and well thought out flip up helmet that’s only let down by its average SHARP safety rating and the fact that users think it’s noisy.
- Now discontinued – replaced by the Shoei Neotec
- SHARP 3 Star safety rated (out of 5)
- Fibreglass Shell
- Intuitive Controls
- Weight 1.7Kg approx
- Typical price range: £350-£400
People like it because: typical great Shoei build quality, good ventilation, convenience of a flip up, simple controls, good for glasses-wearers.
People don’t like it because: it’s noisy, slightly heavier than full faced equivalent.
Flip up (or modular) helmets can be really convenient. It depends on what you need to do when your helmet’s on of course (I tend to just leap on the bike and head off) but some people have need to talk to people, kiss children, ask for directions, slot on glasses (without removing chunks of ear/hair) and so on. They like the freedom that flip up helmets offer. So, for them, Shoei designed the Multitec.
Shoei has built its reputation by producing solid, reliable helmets. They feel right, look right, make the right sounds when you open/close them or buckle them up. And the Multitec is no different – users love the build quality of the Multitec. The flip up front clicks satisfyingly when you lock the chin guard closed. The visor ratchet clunks satisfyingly and the visor stops just where you want it when you want it to. It does most of the things you want under your control, not controlled by the wind or position of your head, which is more than we can say for some helmets.
However, that’s not all the story. The Multitec is ECE 22.01 approved of course (like all motorcycle helmets for sale in the UK/EU) but it only scored 3 stars in the SHARP motorcycle crash helmet safety test. Which is about average. However when you’re paying decent money for a top brand, it’s a little disappointing – and more than disappointing when your helmet fails to protect your noggin when saying a close ‘hello’ to your local curbstone. Shoei proclaim that the helmet’s constructed with a multi-layered organic fibreglass and multi-density shock absorbant interior. Well maybe they ought to take a look at the way some of their competitors make their helmets, becasue both the Lazer Monaco and the Roof Boxer Classic score 4 out of 5 in the same test. Also, the chin guard popped open 17% of the time during the tests on the Multitec, which has got to be a bit of a worry!
But enough of this grumbling. You’ve decided you want a flip up helmet, you like Shoeis and you like the look of the Multitec. So what’s it like?
Comfort and Ventilation
Well, provided you get the correct fitment, owners do like their Shoei Multitecs. The interior is comfortable, there’s some handy channels for the arms of glasses, and the cheek pads are removable with different sizes available should you need to customise the fit a little. There’s also a couple of spaces for speakers if you need to use an intercom. The ventilation is by chin and forehead vents and both seem simple to operate easily and are effective – with a single exhaust vent to the rear at the bottom of the helmet. They’re generally up to the job of cooling in the summer and demisting in the winter (mostly, though one or two people reckon they’re a bit feeble for this). Both controls can be easily operated with gloves on too (hurrah!). The Shoei comes with a Pinlock anti-fog insert so even if the vents turn out to be a bit too gentle, this keeps the visor mist-free (double hurrah!).
Chin Guard and Noise
The flip up front is simple to operate too. A single BFO red button sits front and centre. Press it and the chinguard and visor swing up. Pull the guard down and it clicks home with a reassuring metal thunk. What else? Well, there’s a few other extras supplied – a whisper kit adds a skirt around the neck and chin should you want it – to reduce draft and noise (bless you!). Seems to work reasonably well. However, many owners do complain that, despite Shoei’s best efforts, the Multitec is a bit of a noisy beast. Now, I have to say that in my experience, the noise of a helmet is mostly judged by the helmets you’ve been using before. A person who’s been riding with a paper bag on his head will probably think a £10 helmet is the last word in safety and quietness. Having said that, there’s enough people moaning about them for us to be pretty certain they can be noisy. It probably also has something to do with the aerodynamics of the specific motorcycle as well as wind catching on the exterior shell – but it’s safe to say it is noisier than your average helmet.
The visor is typically good – like most Shoeis. Their visor mechanism means that it stays exactly where you put it. And should you want to replace the visor, it’s dead easy. Shoeis is one of the best visor fitment mechanisms. There’s also a little locking tab on the left hand side which will keep the visor locked shut if you want it to – or cracked open a little if you push it forward. Simple and effective.
Other Stuff. The Shoei Multitec has two helmet shell sizes and is available in XXS to XXL. It’s got a double D ring fastener, which are fine (though I personally prefer their seatbelt style fasteners because I’m lazy) and it’s available in mostly plan colours (see the colour schemes here on the Shoei Website)
Overall, the Multitec is a pretty decent performer, though nothing exceptional. It’s got intuitive and simple controls and has good build quality, although that doesn’t necessarily translate into a safe helmet, as shown by its average SHARP score. It has good ventilation, is comfortable and the flip up mechanism works well. If you want the functionality of a flip-up and can find one at our target price point (and are a bit hard of hearing so won’t notice the wind noise :-)) it’s probably worth a shot.
If you own a Shoei Multitec or any other helmet, we’d love to hear what you think – please add your thoughts to the comments box below.
Shoei Multitec Video
Interested in buying a Shoei Helmet?
If you found this review useful and you’re interested in buying a Shoei crash helmet (or see some prices) – please check out the prices by clicking the link to the page at FC-Moto below where, at the time of writing, the Multitec is still available. If you buy from there, we get a small sum from the sale – thanks a million! (it’s how we finance the site).
Definitely want a Shoei?
Here you'll find all our Shoei crash helmet reviews and previews including full face, flip-up and open face helmets.