SHOEI has announced its latest update to the testing facilities for their world-famous motorcycle safety gear – a state-of-the-art low-temperature rainfall wind tunnel facility at the Ibaraki site in Japan.
Where the previous wind tunnel is able to replicate high speed riding for aerodynamic tweaks, this new wind tunnel can create adverse weather conditions that riders will encounter out on the road, like -5ºC temperatures and rainfall. There’s also a large fan to simulate wind gusts up to 45mph!
Simulating these conditions allows testing of how cold air flows around the neck whilst riding, how the ventilation functions under varying weather (and therefore how the visor fogs up, how easily raindrops roll away etc) which results in a far more complete product.
Whilst the SHOEI X-Spirit III was tested in the wind tunnel at 120 mph (200 km/h) for its sports classification, those who opt for touring models with additional weather protection will have to keep a keen eye on future model releases, as the engineers and R&D team get their designs through the full weather tests.
The facility is reportedly due for a 2021 open, so we could see new ultra-weather-proof lids on the market as soon as 2022 if there’s some helmet designs due for a replacement and waiting in anticipation.
SHOEI will no doubt be strengthening their touring range offering with this factory update
Perhaps we may also see an update to existing models, such as the X-Spirit III being given a re-look? The NXR2 is the most recent release – and we’ve just today taken one in for a long term review, so keep your eyes out for more on that!