Originally introduced in 2016, the Giro Montaro all-mountain helmet has continued to evolve over the years. Photo Editor Peter Moynes gets his head around the latest iteration called the Montaro Mips II helmet.

Based in California, Giro has been making outdoor gear for the past 33 years and their latest offering in the helmet realm is the Montaro Mips II. Designed for the all-mountain rider, this helmet is an update on the classic that was first introduced in 2016 and for this honest review, we head outside, hit the singletrack (not literally), and put our noggins to the test.

Snapshot: Giro Montaro Mips II Mountain Bike Helmet

    1. Pros: Great fit, doesn’t move around from the vibration of rattling downhill. Very comfortable.
    2. Cons: I cannot come up with a con for this helmet. It fits great, is lightweight, and very breathable. I had read somewhere that in cold conditions perhaps there is too much venting, but I have not found myself yet in this position.
    3. Price: $180 Cdn
    4. Who Should Buy: Anyone who’s riding an all-mountain bike and cares about their brain!
    5. Who’ Shouldn’t Buy: If you ride a couple of times a year, and prefer the rails to trails, you likely don’t need the Mips technology, or the amount of thought and design that has gone into this helmet.
    6. Helpful Hack: The helmet offers full camera-mount integration with breakaway feature, which is important if you’re riding with a GoPro on your helmet.
    7. Author’s overall rating: 9.5/10

The Test

I have been testing the Montaro Mips II for the months of August and September alongside a pair of Giro Deeds shoes. For the last three years, I have been using the earlier version of this helmet, the Montaro I, and I’ve gotta say, I really like this new incarnation. Thankfully I did not have a head crash during my testing of the Montaro II, but I spent at least 40 days on trail with it.

The Verdict

A helmet can be a challenging thing to effectively review, because, for the most part, it sits on the top of your head, but hopefully isn’t on your mind as you navigate technical singletrack. But I’ll start with one of my favourite things about this helmet, which is that I had absolutely no issues with it at all. I ride an average of five to six days a week and I’m hard on my gear. The helmet is strapped onto my backpack when not on my head, and gets thrown in and out of trucks without caution. The shell of the helmet is bomber, and I still don’t have any scuffs or dents in it. I will ride access trails and logging roads sans helmet, but for singletrack climbs, the helmet goes on.

Lke it’s predecessor, the Montaro Mips II, has strategic slots in the front for sunglasses with you start to fog out on the uptrack. I definitely put this to the test in August. Man, did I sweat a lot. I cannot really speak to the technicality of the anti-microbial padding, but my helmet doesn’t stink, and I haven’t felt the need to remove and clean the padding yet.

The other feature I liked is the strap gutter for goggles that keeps them in place on a rocky descent.

Sure you might be able to purchase a less expensive helmet from another manufacturer, but I am sure I will have this helmet for at least three seasons, which in my opinion makes this a great overall piece of equipment for comfort, safety, style, and the price.

Giro Montaro Mips II Helmet  – The Deets

  • Weight: 370 grams
  • Material: Full-wrap in-mold polycarbonate shell with EPS liner roll cage reinforcement
  • Sizes: Small, Medium, Large
  • Colours: Matte Black, Matte Chalk, Portaro Grey
  • Price: $180 Cdn
  • For more info: giro.com

Author’s Note: Reviews on Mountain Culture Group are honest expressions of our opinions. If we dislike a product and feel it would score a rating of less than 5/10, we simply won’t review it.