By Matt Black
Sizes: S (54-56cm) M (56-58cm) L (58-61cm)
Weight: S (240g) M (260g) L (270g)
Size tested: M
More of a shout than a whisper, the Spanish manufacturer’s most recognisable helmet still draws its admirers due to the striking design that changed the look of road cycle safety.
Think Spain, heat, cycling, ventilation - the combinations keep on coming. You can’t argue about the Whisper’s premise of safety first followed by an unprecedented number of honey comb vents to cool riders down either. But it's done in a style that at first glance conjured up jars of Marmite in my head.
Love it or loathe it, aesthetically the 39 vents that make up the most striking feature of the Whisper are a work of art, there’s more holes than material, and it’s certainly a case of less is more (LIM). For a road helmet of this calibre, I think that the price tag is right on target, whether you like the design or not, there’s no arguing about the Whispers’ credentials and heritage.
Gracing pro-teams around the world, the profile of Catlike, and in particular the Whisper, are unmistakeable regardless of colour schemes and graphics. This raised profile will help world-wide sales of course, but the Whisper delivers on all fronts from a club rider’s point of view too – me!
In the warm weather (when was that?) the Whisper cools the cranium with ease, you don’t have to be riding at full-tilt to get hot. You could argue that the faster you go the forced air rushing through the vents will cool you down quicker. But no ones’ going to fall for that trick, are they?
Although the absence of a mesh at the front might collect unwelcome airborne visitors I‘ve been lucky enough to escape any such aliens, and now winter’s here, it’s time to wear a skull cap to help keep the chilly blasts at bay.
Fitting the Whisper is a cinch as you would expect: the cradle sits low enough around the lower part of the head and micro-adjusts to feel secure without being tight. I do feel the Whisper sits high on my head as opposed to a helmet like the equally popular Kask Mojito helmet, but of course, one man’s meat is another man’s poison …
At 260g for the medium size, the Whisper is never going to put any pressure on a rider’s neck and although the Coolmax padding isn’t the deepest, it does the job well at feeling the Whisper almost totally un noticeable on my head when riding.
In summary: for me, the Catlike Whisper is the road helmet of choice. I keep coming back to this lid like a Bee to the flower. The confidence it provides me when riding is second to none, it’s a fit-and-forget item, but one that is none the less a safety helmet that oozes style and craftsmanship.