Shoei X-Twelve heavier than X-Eleven

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Shoei’s new flagship helmet weighs 1,450g (size medium) to the X-Eleven’s – the helmet it replaces – 1330g (medium). That leaves us a bit baffled as to its appeal over the much cheaper Shoei RF-1100, which again weighs only 1,330g and shares the X-Twelve’s new CW-1 visor and whiz-bang QRSA visor mechanism. The Shoei X-Twelve or the Shoei X-Spirit II, as it’s known in Europe, also shares the RF-1100′s multi-fiber AIM+ shell construction, which is Snell M2010-approved; the RF-1100′s five shell sizes and, as far as we can tell, every other feature except the Emergency Quick Release System. But, the X-Twelve starts at $650 to the RF-1100′s $400.
Weight is such a big deal for motorcycle helmets because it combines
with aerodynamics and fit to determine whether or not a helmet is
comfortable over long periods and during athletic riding. Fancy helmets
like the X-Twelve have traditionally distinguished themselves from
cheaper options by being made from more exotic materials and therefore
weighing less.

In fact, the only potential significant advantage over the RF-1100 may
be improved ventilation — the X-Twelve has five inlet and ten exhaust
vents – but the RF is also ventilated to an extraordinary degree with
three inlets and six exhausts. Unfortunately, we’ve never been able to
get Shoei to return our calls or emails, so we can’t clear up these
issues for you.

The EQRS system is simply a couple of plastic tabs that disengage the
cheek pads when pulled. This enables emergency responders to more
easily remove the helmet post crash, potentially avoiding further
damage to the spine or neck.

Like the range-topping Arai RX-7 Corsair V — the X-Twelve’s closest
competition — the X-Twelve now uses a removable and washable CoolMax

Check our Shoei RF-1100 story for a video demonstrating the function of the CW-1 visor and QRSA mechanism.

If you think the X-Twelve sounds a little disappointing, you’re not
alone. That the weight has increased by over 100g from the X-Eleven
without any explanation points to either careless design or careless
marketing; if that increase is justified or necessitated by some new
feature or increased safety, why not tell us about it? If we were in
the market for a Shoei helmet we’d just buy the cheaper, equally
high-spec, lighter, better looking RF-1100.


Thanks for the tip, Asaph.

  • carlos

    it looks like they were copying some of the design from OGK. I’ve heard that’s a fine helmet. and light.

  • Marshall

    It’s like Shoei wants us to buy the RF-1100 and not the X-12. There are only 3 graphics options for the X-12 and something like 12+ for the RF-1100

  • Mitch

    Marshall, the race replica paint schemes are not yet out for both helmets, the X tends to have almost a dozen, the RF just a few.

  • urban rider

    I tried the helmet a couple of weeks back. Fitted amazingly well. I did my best to break the vents too, but no joy.

    The Shoei image to me says ‘safety’ which is great and all but they just aren’t very cool.

    Even the Shoei rep said that!

  • Rocket Punch

    Rf-1100 will be my next helmet.

  • Matt

    SNELL M2010 = Heavy helmet is my guess…

    • Wes Siler

      But the RF-1100 meets Snell M2010 too…

  • Fred

    I’ve had my head in a lot of helmets, and I always come back to Shoei. I love the way their helmets feel, they’re comfortable, well ventilated, aren’t terrible lookers and you can ride for days with them. I currently have an RF-1100, and if I can’t get my hands on one with carbon fiber, the next one will be an RF.

  • Qbi-C

    well, at the moment I own RF-1000 for day use and X-11 for track days or one-day-faster-trip and have to say, that the RF-1000 has just one negative thing – not fully removable interior. The X-11 is good on the racetrack because of better wents and possibility to wash the sweat interior completely (not only the removable cheekpads as in RF1000)

    what am I trying to indicate is, that my next personal choice (even for the trackdays) will be the RF-1100.. X-12 is too expensive without any important reason (only marketing, I would say) and the EQRS system?? honestly, my opinion is, that only well educated professional will know, how to “use” it when helping you after crash.. for example on the racetracks there is no real chance, that those track employees will know, how to remove it correctly in case you’re after crash paralised on the ground waiting for help..

  • clayton aka one jay

    my first helmet was a tzr and it saved my head, so my second was an rf1000. my biggest complaint with that helmet after the first year was the pads got loose (and not just in the cheeks) and wobbled too much. i started working at cycle gear in mesa, az and got to experience many new helmets, but the one i replaced mine with ended up being the bell star, for its exceptional airflow. post bell star i did finally get the helmet i’ve always wanted though, an x eleven elias tc1, and though i do love it, it still does not ventilate quite as well as the x11.

    so i am excited to see how these two new models will fare. we havent got any of them yet at our shop, so i havent seen them in person yet, but it seems the rf1100 will be a great hit, while the x12 will become even more exclusive. i will report back when i get my hands on one.

  • Steve

    I think both of the new helmets are heavier than the respective helmets they replace. (X-12 vs X-11 and RF1100 vs RF1000). One reason, I’m guessing, is because of the M2010 standard. Also, the X-series and RF-series are not interchangeable for every head. RFs are rounder and the X-series are more oval. Unfortunately, most people don’t take head shape into consideration and just size up when a helmet feels cramped in the front/back or the sides. Wearing a helmet that’s too large compromises safety and long-term comfort. Check out

  • joiademoço

    i had an shoei rf1000 and i have already sold him because of the reduced ventilation. I use glasses and thei were always with a cloud witch was quite dangerous. I thin shoei resolved this issue in the new rf-1100