By Simon Cudby

By Simon Cudby

At first sight, the Vemar Kona adventure helmet just looks plain cool. With a good, subtle graphic treatment in a matte black and white finish, the Kona looks very contemporary compared to some of its older rivals.

Looks are one thing, but your helmet has to be up to par on the safety side, and Vemar’s R-3P reinforced thermo-polymer construction is both ECE 22.05 and USA DOT approved. Venting is good on this unit, with an adjustable Vemar Klima system chin vent for aid in keeping the visor fog free, and two front vents under the peak of the helmet. Speaking of the peak, although it is non-adjustable, it is set at a good ”non-kook” level in stock form.

At speed on the road, the wind noise was quite loud without ear-plugs inserted, but no louder than most helmets we have tried in the past. I rate quite highly the aerodynamics of the Kona, and the only time I was getting wind buffeting was behind an 18-wheeler on the freeway. Of course, the bike you are riding and your windshield position both have a big effect on aero too.

Comfort-wise, the helmet felt good on my noggin on a three hour ride in varying temperatures. The liner also has a technical fiber that has a long-life treatment against generally stinky helmet bacteria. I’ll still wash mine every few rides though by removing the liner and cheek pads, just not to risk it.

I liked the design of the microlock chinstrap buckle, and I found it easy to use once I got the hang of it. The Pinlock ready clear visor is scratch resistant, but I wished it had a dark visor… but wait, this thing has a flip down inner sun visor! This is the kind of feature you might find on a European helmet costing four times as much, so it’s a huge feature on this Kona. No more trying to look cool with your tinted visor during the day, only to have to stash some clear goggles in your pack in case you run out of daylight.

All in all, I recommend this feature-packed lid. For the money, you can’t beat it.

Available in XS through XXL, and in three colors: Matte White, Flo Orange, and Flo Yellow. Each Kona includes a 5 year warranty and a high quality helmet bag. MSRP: $149.00 www.motonation.com

Chris Glaspell

The success of any online publication depends on the quality of execution, and
in this respect UpShift Online’s success is virtually assured.  It was founded by veteran motorcycle industry professionals: English-born photographer Simon Cudby, the premier photographer in the world of motocross, and Chris Glaspell, creative director with firms serving clients that include Suzuki, Yamaha, Kawasaki, Cycle World and Yoshimura. This, plus Upshift’s veteran editorial staff and unrivaled journalism, will gives readers unparalleled views of adventure motorcycling.