A survey of 4,600 motorcycle buyers in the U.S. finds that Arai helmets rank highest in overall satisfaction among owners. It’s the 11th straight year that Arai has topped the satisfaction survey.
The J.D. Power 2009 Motorcycle Helmet Satisfaction Study, made public yesterday, found that Arai scored 830 points out of 1,000 and "performs particularly well in the ventilation and design styling factors," says a J.D. Power press release.
Shoe came in second, with 815 points, and was ranked very well for its face shield, although its points total was lower than in last year’s study. Icon was third with 806.
Fulmer and Harley-Davidson helmets went up in the rankings over last year by one spot, and Scorpion, Nolan, and Bell helmets also scored lower this year. HJC, which holds the largest market share, was poorly ranked in the survey.
"The study measures the overall satisfaction of motorcyclists with their new helmet in three key factors:" says the J.D. Power release, "ventilation, face shield, and design and styling; which consist of 11 attributes: quietness; ventilation/air flow; de-fogging; face shield ability to keep wind out; face shield ability to resist scratching; ease of replacing face shield; scratch resistance of shell; color/graphic design; weight; ease of fastening the strap; and fit and comfort."
The largest considerations in a helmet purchase were found to be fit-and-comfort, and style-and-colour, with buyers of half-shell "shorty" helmets more concerned with looks, while buyers of other types were more concerned with fit.
"Arai’s focus on fit and comfort" gave it the edge, said Tim Fox, research manager for powersports at J.D. Power.
The survey was conducted among 4,600 buyers of new 2008 models in September and October 2008. See the J.D. Power site for more info.