The new Troy Lee Designs Stage helmet breaks new ground for lightweight, full-face protection, offering the ultimate performance for enduro riders.
Born out of Troy’s brief for a helmet that would be crazy light and crazy ventilated, Stage is designed for enduro racers seeking airy forget-its-there performance while climbing combined with full-face protection on the downhills.
First up, weight – a big consideration for any enduro enthusiast and an area where the Stage is truly peerless. At just 690g in size M/L, the Stage is around 150g lighter than the competition – all the more impressive considering the level of ventilation and protection on offer.
When it comes to ventilation, the idea with the Stage was to create enough air around the face that you hardly notice the chinbar’s there and the TLD team has certainly achieved that. In our testing, the Stage is the first full-face we’ve ever worn that keeps goggles from fogging on climbs. That’s down to the 11 front intakes and 14 exhaust vents that channel air through the helmet – and as a bonus, the large front opening makes it super easy to drink too.
Helping the feeling of lightness and ventilation are the new jawpads. Positioned – unsurprisingly – to each side of the jaw, they give protection where it’s needed, rendering a full cheekpad unnecessary. Speaking of the pads, you get three sizes with each helmet, which combine with the two super soft liners and two neck rolls to give you a tailored fit. Each is also made with Xstatic pure silver tech for high-performance odour protection and quick-dry wicking for extra comfort.
Troy Lee Designs has always been as preoccupied with protection as style and the Stage is no exception on this front. Under the fibre-reinforced Polylite shell are two different types of foam – traditional EPS and an inner layer of EPP, which has more give. The two are combined to best manage both high and low-speed impact energy. On top of that, there’s also MIPS – Multi-directional Impact Protection System – which helps dissipate rotational forces on impact. All this is crammed into a sleek, surprisingly low-volume package – and low volume means lower leverage forces in the event of a crash.
The fixed Polyacrylite-injected chinbar features EXOskeleton reinforcement and is also lined with EPP for multi-impact performance, increasing the useful life of the helmet. Finally, there’s the security and practicality of the magnetic Fidlock buckle, which is easy to snap together and apart while wearing gloves yet holds firm while you’re riding.
While TLD is firmly positioning the Stage as an enduro helmet and doesn’t recommend its use for downhill racing – that’s what the D3 full face is for – safety testing on the Stage saw the helmet pass DH certification, showing its superiority when it comes to protection for the most challenging enduro courses.
The Stage’s undeniable good looks come courtesy of the aggressively shaped vents that nevertheless blend into a sleek style that’s topped with the traditional TLD visor, which has 40mm of adjustment and is secured with plastic breakaway hardware. The end result is a design that retains the DNA of the brand’s D-series full face helmets yet has a character all of its own.
As with all TLD helmets, the finish is second to none – the gorgeous gloss and magnificent matt designs accented with anodised aluminium fixing points.
Our first drop of helmets – in stock now – is available in either stealth matte black or race silver navy red, but there will be five colourways in total including red, grey and pink alternatives.