The IXS Trigger AM helmet is specifically aimed at the All Mountain (as per the AM denotation) area of mountain biking. After using this helmet for all my cycling over the last six months, I’m happy to say its main use of protecting my head in crashes hasn’t been called into question, but let’s look at how it performs in all other aspects.
The first thing noticeable about the Trigger AM is its stylish looks.
It’s available in a wide range of two-tone colors, not so important safety-wise, but if your head is protected and you look cool wearing it, that’s a big plus!
Getting your hands on the Trigger AM, it does feel slightly heavier than some helmets. This one (the Small/Medium size) weighs in at just under 13 ounces, but on closer inspection, you can see why. The outer shell overlaps around the edges of the shock-absorbing EPS foam, adding some strength and durability, but also one of the reasons why this helmet looks good.
The edges look clean and neat on this helmet, with only the EPS foam visible through the vents. The foam won’t get damaged from any rough handling or putting the helmet on the ground.
The ErgoFit Ultra system allows three positions of adjustment at the back of the helmet, and the smooth, small step ratchet dial gives quick and precise fit for any head shape. The operation is so quick and easy. I found myself dialing in the ratchet a couple of clicks for fast downhill hill sections, and loosening out for climbing or more relaxed riding.
Once adjusted for fit and on the head, the small amount of extra weight is unnoticeable. The small amount of padding is just where it is needed, and the helmet feels very comfortable.
Coverage at the back of the head is excellent, along with a recessed ridge that will keep goggle straps in place. The surefire way to know how a helmet feels is wearing it for long rides when the weather is hot. The Triigger AM has been on my head for multi-day trips of up to eight hours a day.
Comfort is outstanding, but the vents, seeming large on the outside taper to a smaller size next to the head. I noticed more sweat than when wearing my usual trail helmet, but that seems to be a result of the Trigger providing more protection.
The visor is on the smaller size but provides just enough protection from the sun and rain. Its adjustable in three positions, the highest of which enables you to fit goggles underneath. The attachment points have remained tight, and the visor, along with the helmet, has stood up to some abuse and still looks and performs fine.
The Fidlock magnetic chin strap buckle seemed unnecessary to me, but after getting used to it, it’s a great addition. It locks securely and instantly, and can even be clasped with one hand. I found this very useful in cold and wet conditions when wearing layers, jacket, and neck and head warmers.
Just being able to get the ends of the buckle close and feeling them connect securely was much easier than trying to slot in a regular clasp.
As far as helmets go, the Trigger AM is fairly basic. While its quality and protection are without question, many helmets at a similar price point come with MIPS (Multi-directional Impact Protection System).
This is a layer inside the helmet which allows a small amount of motion between the helmet and the head in all directions in the event of a crash. We are not going to get into the MIPS or not argument here, but the Trigger AM fits really well and certainly feels solid and robust.
With helmet-mounted cameras very popular now, some helmets have a mount built into the shell. Again, the Trigger AM is without this, but I have used a strap on mount on numerous occasions with no issues whatsoever, and I’ve found the small vent at the top of the helmet useful for fitting my helmet-mounted light.
From trail centers, all-mountain riding, bikepacking, and even twenty-mile daily urban commuting, the IXS Trigger has been my go-to helmet for over six months.
Sure it could have more features, and the visor and vents are not perfect, but for fit and comfort, it’s outstanding.
IXS has been making motorcycle and bike safety gear for decades, so you know you’re protected, and with the looks and feel of the Trigger AM, you’re getting a great helmet.