For many years now, POC has been one of the most popular brands when it comes to enduro helmets. Last year, POC introduced a real highlight, the new Kortal Race MIPS enduro half-shell helmet. 2022 has seen the release of a new, lightweight enduro full-face helmet, the POC Otocon Race MIPS. Reason enough for us to take a close look and test it.
Light and airy: the POC Otocon Race MIPS
In terms of function, the Otocon is basically halfway between the Kortal RACE MIPS half-shell helmet and the Coron Air MIPS full-face helmet. Downhill riding on enduro bikes has been getting faster and more demanding over the last few years, so the need for more protection has increased. For enduro use, downhill full-face helmets are too heavy and not sufficiently ventilated. This is where the new lightweight Enduro full-face helmets come in. Such as the POC Otocon Race MIPS. I tested the MIPS version in bright orange for € 329.95 RRP – the colour is a great eye-catcher on the trail! The helmet is also available without MIPS at a price of €269.95. Visually, the Race variant is very easy to recognise, as it is always bicoloured.
With its 750 grams (size M, Otocon Race MIPS) or 680 grams (size M, Otocon), the helmet is particularly lightweight. The ventilation system is ideal and was inspired by POC’s own road bike helmets. Plus, the cheek pads and the chin bar front can be removed for additional airflow. The helmet offers the highest safety standards (see certifications) and is also available in the RACE MIPS version with Recco reflector (ensures better visibility in the mountains) and NFC medical ID tag (can be fed with medical data that may be relevant for first responders). The new Race Lock adjustment system is fully integrated into the helmet and can be controlled at the back of the head with the help of an infinitely variable setting wheel. The helmet fits perfectly and never slips.
Trail mode: ON – the POC Otocon out in the great wild open
When I put it on, my first thought was that the helmet is a bit small (I wear size S with a head circumference of 53 cm). Even after several hours, the helmet doesn’t feel too tight or heavy. It just fits perfectly. There was no need to remove the cheek pads even on the climbs, the helmet is superbly ventilated and I didn’t sweat a lot. It also conveys a very safe feeling in the bike park, so you can indeed use it in many ways. The difference is simply in the weight. The helmet is so much lighter than a classic DH full-face helmet, you will quickly get used to it.
The adjustment system at the back of the head is very easy to use and the strap surrounds the head comfortably and securely without pressing or disturbing. The goggle strap is also by no means disturbing and you can always reach the adjustment wheel with just one grip. The only thing I would have liked to have on the helmet is a magnetic Fidlock closure system. The helmet is manufactured to such a high standard that a regular click fastener almost feels somehow out of place. I couldn’t test the included ‘rain visor’ because the weather was just too good. It simply clicks onto the existing visor and can then be used immediately as an extended rain cover. The helmet has a particularly large field of vision which is not only made for POC’s own perfectly fitting goggles, but also for the goggles of other manufacturers.
My final verdict on the POC full-face helmet
In my home region, there are so many steep trails and challenging routes in general that you almost prefer not to ride with a half-shell. After a serious fall earlier this year, the issue of safety has become very important to me again. The POC Otocon is not annoying at all on the climbs and can definitely be recommended as a safer alternative to a half-shell model. Personally, I would never consider taking two helmets on a tour, either the enduro full-face helmet will also work well on ascents, or it won’t work for me. POC has done everything right, a very good helmet. Anyone who attaches great importance to safety or rides on challenging trails, perhaps even as a beginner, should definitely consider an enduro full-face helmet. It’s worth it. Ride on!