There’s no quicker way to miss out on track time than to show up without the proper safety gear. No matter where you choose to race or track your car, any reputable track and organizer will require you to at least wear a Snell-certified helmet. The Snell Memorial Foundation sets the minimum requirements for a helmet’s quality of safety, and has since become the standard for helmet regulations. A new set of requirements and design changes routinely comes out every five years (for competition automotive sports), while helmets are typically allowed to be used for up to approximately ten years. The Snell SA2015 rating entered just last year, which means the time to buy a helmet is now if you’re due for a new one and want the longest useful life possible. Among the new wave of Snell SA2015 helmets is HJC’s offering, in the form of the AR-10 III, designed for track day enthusiasts and racers of nearly any discipline.

(L) Clear (M) Amber (R) Smoke

(L) Dark Blue (R) Dark Chrome

When shopping for a new helmet, you should make your decision based on a few specific factors. This includes weight, comfort, visibility, and of course safety. The HJC AR-10 III fully meets the requirements for Snell SA2015 approval, so how does it match up to the other criteria? First, it weighs just 3.6 pounds according to our scale. It’s not quite down to 3.2 pounds like some carbon fiber helmets, but for a fiberglass composite weave shell, 3.6 pounds is reasonably lightweight. This helps immensely when driving on track, allowing the wearer to turn their head quickly and with ease, all while reducing the neck fatigue associated with heavier helmets. In terms of comfort, the AR-10 III utilizes HJC’s own Fire Resistant Moisture-wicking Comfort Carbon interior design. This, paired with vents on the top and chin areas of the helmet, reduces the likelihood of sweat building inside. The ventilation design is complemented by HJC’s “ACS” Advanced Channeling Ventilation System, which is intended to flush heat and humidity out of the back of the helmet from the front. As with HJC’s other offerings for racers, the AR-10 III delivers a Snell SA2015 rating. This makes it safe and legal to use in nearly every track day or racing organization in the United States.

HJC has long held the reputation of implementing today’s safety standards in an affordable package, the AR-10 III is no different. While the company’s offerings of the past felt a little more barebones in order to remain modestly priced, the latest lineup has stepped it up in terms of features and design. Racers on a budget are no longer limited to helmets that simply meet the safety requirements and offer little extra. An attractive design and its list of features make the AR-10 III a strong candidate for both the newbie track enthusiasts as well as the seasoned club racer. The AR-10 III is available in white or semi-flat black for $329.99.

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