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We may disagree on a lot of things, but we can certainly agree on one point – we need to protect our little brain while we are riding a motorcycle. And for the past couple of months, helmets in India have been a hot topic. Which one is the best? An imported Euro-spec one? Or a made-in-India lid with an ISI at the back? Now, if you click here, you will get a gist of what are we rambling on about. The helmet in question is an ISI-spec helmet courtesy of the biggest helmet makers in India, Steelbird. Meet the Steelbird SBA-2 Double Visor.

Design-wise, Steelbird has done a pretty good job. The lines running on the sides, the big transparent visor and the steel mesh at the rear air vents give the SBA-2 a brawny look. The main visor is one huge; it covers almost 60 per cent of the face. So, what you get is a helmet with a split-personality; a full-face helmet when the visor is down and an (almost) half-face helmet when the visor is up. The only downfall of fitting a visor of this size is that the chin guard is leaner than most of the full-face helmet you’ll find in the market. The main visor does its job rather well in blocking wind noise. But at high speeds, there's a significant amount of noise coming in. While we were impressed with the main visor, the tinted one left us unconvinced. It does its primary job of blocking glare remarkably, but the size of the visor could’ve have been larger. 

The outer shell is made from high-impact ABS material and feels sturdy. The padding on the inside is as minimal as it can get and to make matters worse, there’s no padding on the chin bar. Also, there are exposed screw heads, so if you have a bushy beard you better find a trimmer. The buckle is held by nylon straps and has some soft padding for added convenience. The plastic buckle may not offer the same kind of protection that a double-D ring offers, but it holds on pretty neat. The SBA-2 retails at Rs 3,409 and is available in two sizes – 580mm and 600mm. There are a variety of colours available – Matt Black, Glossy Black, Matt Silver, Matt Maroon, Matt Desert Storm, Matt Battle green, Matt Yamaha Blue, Matt Sports Red and Matt Honda Grey. But, if you really care about the looks of the helmet then, there are other models available in the SBA-2 range which looks like they were designed for a Hollywood sci-fi movie.

All in all, the SBA-2 with its unique look and adequate safety characteristics will find no trouble to attract the first-timers. That said, if you are an avid traveller, then we recommend you buy a lid that offers superior comfort and protection.
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