Helmets have become not only more protective every year, but they are now becoming increasingly aerodynamic — without looking like a TT helmet. The Louis Garneau Course helmet looks unassuming, but underneath it all, this lid delivers comfort, protection and aerodynamics.

Louis Garneau Course Helmet Features:

  • In-Mold construction with Super MSB for added protection at the base of the helmet
  • Aero inner nerve optimizes aerodynamics and aids in moisture evacuation
  • Integrated strap system with inner nerves
  • Spiderlock® Pro II dial for proper fit
  • Pro-lock divider to adjust strap position
  • Extensive wind tunnel testing for proven aerodynamics
  • X-Static® XT2TM padding is quick-drying and antimicrobial
  • 31 total vents
  • MSRP: $239.99

Louis Garneau Course Helmet Review

Good looks and aero performance

While other “aero” helmets feature distinctive teardrop designs, the Louis Garneau Course helmet sports an unassuming look. But, don’t let those everyday looks fool you — this helmet has chops and aerodynamics.

As the top-shelf road helmet in their lineup, the Course has been proven in the most demanding races and conditions in the world. This well-built road racing helmet meets all current safety standards for impact protection, but is not yet available with MIPS technology (but likely will in the future). The entire helmet is built around what Garneau calls the “Aero Inner Nerve”, which serves as the foundation for its aerodynamics and creates a fully unified fit system.

The quality of the molds and overall build is indicative of its $239 price. Fit is easily adjusted and all touch points are comfortable next-to-skin. No tight spots for my regular-shaped oval head as I used the size Medium right out of the box for my 58cm head.

Louis Garneau Course Helmet Review

The fit is dialed in via a ubiquitous dial on the rear, which Garneau calls Spiderlock Pro II. This is easily-adjusted at any time and I found myself doing so quite regularly as my hair grows between shaving. On rough roads, the dial did rattle against the underside of the helmet, but that was nothing more than occasional annoyance.

Now for the extra cool part of this helmet — Garneau claims the Course helmet to be the most aerodynamic in their testing, which you can read here. To achieve this without going full-aero, they performed extensive wind tunnel testing using a dummy in riding position and optimized the air flow. As mentioned, the helmet is built around an “Aero Inner Nerve”, which has been dialed in for the most ideal airflow. This system allows air to pass both inside and outside of the helmet as efficiently as possible without the need for aggressive teardrop designs. The result is a great-looking helmet that doesn’t make you look like a tri-geek on group rides.

While I don’t have a wind tunnel at my disposal, I can compare this helmet to the Garneau Diamond II and the Giro Aeon from a pure road noise perspective. In my mind, the quieter the wind noise, the less drag. I’ll say that the Course is definitely quiet at speed while still remaining cool during Sahara-like conditions. That combination of ventilation and aero is not something you’ll find with other aero-specific helmets. Most will turn your head into a sauna, but not the Course — hallelujah!

The Good

  • Excellent fit and comfort
  • Quiet at speed — you can tell it is aero
  • Low profile design
  • Tons of vents for hot weather
  • Thin, flexible straps wear comfortably
  • Sunglasses stay put on top when put upside down

The Bad

  • No MIPS
  • Rear dial rattles underside of helmet on rough roads

Bottom Line: Garneau Course Helmet

Most aerodynamic helmets look goofy, but the Garneau Course looks like a regular helmet, but performs with the best aero helmets on the market. Excellent fit and quality construction round out this top-shelf lid.

Buy Now: Get at CompetitiveCyclist.com

In Summary

9.2 Low-key Aero Lid

When it comes to aerodynamic helmets, most look the part -- not the Louis Garneau Course helmet. Yes, it's aero benefits are hidden under an unassuming shell, but that's what makes it such a great helmet. It looks awesome, has awesome ventilation and adds a fair bit of aerodynamic benefits. MIPS would make this great helmet even better.

  • Aerodynamics 9
  • Comfort 10
  • Protection 9
  • Breathability 9
  • Style 9
  • Value 9

About Author

A Seattle native, Jason developed a love for the outdoors and a thing for mountains. That infatuation continues as he founded this site in 1999 --sharing his love of road biking, mountain biking, trail running and skiing. That passion is channeled into every article or gear review he writes. Utah's Wasatch Mountains are his playground.

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