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Canyon Excel Race Helmet



Lightweight, stylish and extremely comfortable helmet let down slghtly by finer detailing

At every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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With styling, safety, weight and ventilation comparable with models twice the price, Canyon's Excel race helmet illustrates how far mid range lids have evolved, to the point where making distinctions between models is very difficult.

However, for all its good points the detailing and overall finish quality of our test sample was disappointing.

Canyon are a largely Internet based, straight to the consumer bike brand - you can find them in about 100 shops in the UK too, but they distribute direct which theoretically means savings get ploughed into better spec. Conformity to CE1078 and in mould construction are what you'd expect at this end of the market – the latter process simply means the foam liner is blown into the hard shell as it forms.

This has two major advantages. Firstly, it allows improved ventilation for less weight without compromising strength or protection, reducing production costs into the bargain. Twenty-four well-conceived vents and machine washable anti bacterial pads bode well for a hygienic and comfortable inner climate while the universal head-ring system affords a perfect fit in seconds. A marked lack of Scotchlite reflectives offended my sensibilities, but I'm pleased to report the head ring makes a very serviceable small to medium LED caddy.

Out on the road minor niggles quickly evaporated and I have been pleasantly surprised by the low weight and the constant cooling breeze whistling through my hair. Riders prone to ice-cream headaches could either wear a buff, or stretch cling film over the shell, providing some additional shower protection into the bargain. With an old school trade cap beneath, the Edge assumes the persona of a remarkably competent trail lid which is great news if you partake in a bit of 'cross or forest fun. Despite my misgivings, the shell finish hasn't deteriorated with the usual everyday carelessness, cleaning up like new given a once-over with a clean cloth.


Lightweight, stylish and extremely comfortable helmet let down slghtly by finer detailing

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Make and model: Canyon Excel Race Helmet

Size tested: 58 - 62 cm

Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

"Giving you the ultimate protection where you need it most whilst being cool and aerodynamic. This helmet is a serious contender to the other helmets in its class!". On balance, I'm inclined to agree.

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Road / Race style helmet with double In-Mould integrated bonded shell & SOFTLOK 2 fully adjustable headband and harness fitting system.

24-dynamic design air flow vents for ultimate comfort, padded chin buckle guard & Airmesh inner pads.

Race inspired graphics over black EPS base. Weight: 244 grams.


Small/Medium - 54-58cm

Large/X-Large - 58-62cm

Rate the product for quality of construction:

Finish was below par on our test model.

Rate the product for performance:
Rate the product for durability:
Rate the product for weight, if applicable:

Very unobtrusive at 225g

Rate the product for comfort, if applicable:

Great airflow,tactile straps and fittings with excellent ventilation to boot.

Rate the product for value:

Generally very good value for money but the finish of our test model was disappointing and competition is very fierce at this price-point.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Minor niggles forgotten, the excel is a very lightweight and stylish competition lid with excellent airflow and surprising levels of comfort.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

Low weight, sharp styling, great comfort/airflow.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

Quality of finish, specifically the outer-shell.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Possibly

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Possibly

Overall rating: 7/10

About the tester

Age: 37  Height: 1m 81  Weight: 70 kilos

I usually ride: Rough Stuff Tourer Based around 4130 Univega mtb Frameset  My best bike is: 1955 Holdsworth Road Path and several others including cross & traditional road

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Most days  I would class myself as: Experienced

I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,

Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)

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