Saddleback is delighted to announce a new partnership with leading helmet brand HJC, which will launch with its all-new model line-up, leading advances in safety, aerodynamics and ventilation.
Based in South Korea, HJC has been manufacturing helmets to exacting standards since 1971, always pushing the boundaries of innovation, technology and safety. Perhaps more widely known for its highly-praised motorcycle helmets, which make up 20% of the European motorcycle helmet market, HJC has enjoyed the enviable title as the world’s number one helmet manufacturer for the last 18 years.
Now fully committed to producing the highest-calibre road cycling helmets under its own banner, HJC’s partnership with World Tour stalwarts Lotto Soudal shows both the brand’s ambition and the performance of its products. Thomas de Gendt’s HJC Ibex helmet enjoyed plenty of airtime in the 2019 Tour’s breakaways while the brand’s Adwatt time-trial and triathlon helmet helped Victor Campenaerts set a new UCI Hour Record of 55.089km in April 2019.
HJC sports division director, Mr.Choi, says: “HJC has a long history of making quality motorcycle helmets which involved helmet technology, experience in sales, production capability and promotional expertise. However, as HJC is relatively new in the world of bicycle helmets, we needed an experienced partner with expertise in sales and marketing.
“After our initial meeting at Saddleback’s office, there were multiple meetings that took place in England and in Korea that ultimately confirmed our commitment to each other. We are very pleased to announce that a deal has been reached due to our trust and anticipated commitment to each other.
“In the future, HJC shall be known as an innovative and trustworthy brand, one that is approachable and loved in the British market. We will work together with Saddleback to make this happen.
“Once again, we would like to thank everyone at Saddleback in its decision to share the same direction as HJC and we are excited to begin our new venture with Saddleback in the 2020 season.”
HJC is one of very few helmet companies equipped with its own wind tunnel, where the brand’s team of dedicated cyclists can test their latest designs. With the ability to test on-site, HJC’s engineers are not only advancing helmet aerodynamics, but maximising air intake and exhaust to outperform the competition in the cooling stakes when racing heats up.
Other innovations include patented Coolpath tech, which replaces inner padding for increased airflow, comfort and lightness, and Selfit, an automatic, self-adjusting fitting system that adapts as you ride. When it comes to safety, in-mould helmet construction bonds the polycarbonate shell to the EPS layer, which is itself reinforced with an internal frame that holds the helmet in one piece and is more resistant to impact.
The brand’s outstanding facilities and in-house manufacturing mean total control of both quality and supply, allowing HJC to bring its latest designs to market with prologue-winning speed.
“We’re thrilled to bring HJC into the Saddleback family,” says Saddleback brand director, Richard Mardle. “Not only does the brand’s innovative design ethos, outstanding quality and exceptional performance fit right in with our portfolio but along with Castelli and Sidi, we can now offer riders a complete World-Tour standard outfit under one roof.”
HJC will be showing its latest helmets – the Ibex 2.0, Furion 2.0, Atara and Adwatt – at Eurobike in just a few days’ time, while members of the trade and cycling media can get a hands-on look at HJC at this year’s Saddleback House Show on 10-11 September.
Pre-orders will be available for HJC products from 10 September with stock expected to arrive at Saddleback in late October.