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Scorpion EXO-AT950 Review

Scorpion EXO-AT950 Review
A Dual-Sport Flip-Up Bargain
by Rick K. and "Burn" for webBikeWorld.com

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Summary

The Scorpion EXO-AT950 is a brand-new dual-sport flip-up for 2016.

It's based on the excellent Scorpion EXO-GT920 flip-up we reviewed recently.

The dual-sport version of a flip-up helmet is a new thing and whether you need one or not is debatable.

But if you do, there's no better deal than the Scorpion AT950.

You'll get everything you get with the big boys, but at 1/3 the price.

So what's a dual-sport flip-up?

Well, it wouldn't be a dual-sport flip-up without a peak and the rotating front, of course.

With the AT950, you'll also get an internal sun shade, a removable interior, a chin curtain and outstanding forward visibility.

And for your meager $269.50, you also get 3 helmet shells to span the size range (beat that, Schuberth!) and a 5-year warranty.

Want more? How about blanking plates that allow you to wear the AT950 without the peak?

The GT920 genes come through with the AT950. The shell feels very sturdy, with almost zero of the flip-up flexibility and looseness found on other sub-$300 flip-ups.

And the peak actually works better (quieter and less vibration) than the $829.00 (yes, you read that right) Schuberth E1 (review).

The only slight hang-up is the fit, which, is smaller than expected. So you may have to move up one size larger than normal.

Otherwise, there's no doubt that the new Scorpion EXO-AT950 is the dual-sport flip-up to have.

Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet
Introduction

Apparently, dual-sport flip-up helmets are becoming a thing.

The trend started back in 1013, with the Caberg Tourmax (review), released in that year.

Now Schuberth fans can dig deep and buy the Schuberth E1 (review), but it costs $829.00 and only uses 2 shell sizes to span the head size range.

And we have a Touratech Aventuro Mod (Preview) in the review queue; it's an E1, made by Schuberth for Touratech.

(Psssst: here's a little secret: it's better than the Schuberth version...)

But nobody even comes close to beating the new Scorpion EXO-AT950 for price vs. performance.

Now you may wonder why you'd need a dual-sport flip-up, because there plenty of good flip-ups and a few good dual-sport helmets and several really good off-road helmets out there.

So who needs one? Just about everyone who owns an "adventure touring" bike, to be honest.

Only problem: a dual-sport flip-up -- or even a dual-sport helmet -- is not really made for off-road riding; it's for armchair off-roaders.

Admit it -- probably, oh, about 98% of dual-sport adventure-touring motorcycle owners wouldn't even think of getting their tires dirty.

If you're one of them, don't worry. It's nothing to be ashamed about.

Just like many Jeep owners, there are dozens of reasons why you want to look like you're ready for anything but really hope you don't have to prove it.

That's OK! Revel in it! "Cultural appropriation" of off-road riders if fine with us. Heck -- when you think about it, metric cruiser riders have been doing it for years!

In fact, just about every Harley sold in the last 40 years basically appropriates the "bad boy" Harley image of the '40's and '50's.

Cafe racers? Same thing.

So don't worry. You don't need a motocross helmet, goggles and a Camelbak to ride your GS. A Scorpion EXO-AT950 will do fine and you'll be just as comfortable as the guy on the Gold Wing.

Scorpion EXO-AT920 Paint, Graphics and Overall Quality

The Scorpion AT950 is basically the Scorpion GT920 (review) with a peak.

There's plenty of precedent for that -- just look at the Schuberth E1, which is a C3 Pro with a peak.

The AT950 and GT920 share the same shell, interior and top and rear vents.

About the only thing different on the AT950 is the rotating flip-up visor, which has a sort-of off-road helmet "beak" and peak.

When a helmet springs from a good gene pool, you're usually in good shape and that's the case here. The GT920 is a darn good flip-up for just $209.95 and the AT950 is no exception.

So you're going to see a lot of the same comments here that you read in the GT920 review. For example, Scorpion helmets have typically excellent quality overall and the AT950 is no exception.

The color choices with both are somewhat limited; it probably helps keep the costs down.

For the AT950, it's black, anthracite or the silver shown here, with a black/yellow, black/red or black/silver mild stripe "Neocon" graphic costing 20 bucks more.

No white? No red? Orange, yellow or blue? Oh well...stick with the solid silver; you'll save enough for a couple of tanks of gas.

The silver version has its own charm, because the color compliments the modern yet angular yet curvy lines of the AT950.

In fact, for all you webBikeWorlders who have written with complaints about modern helmets looking too yogurt cup-ish, the AT950 is yours. There's just the small Scorpion "S" under the peak that you'll never see (if you don't remove the peak).

The rest of the helmet is just solid silver -- obviously not Shoei or Arai or Schuberth quality but excellent nonetheless and with a surface finish and overall fit-and-finish that's beyond the helmet's meager list price.

Yes, there are a couple of mildly sharp plastic edges around the peak molding, but at this price, who cares?

The rest of the moving parts feel solid and the liner, I hate to say it, has a better overall construction fit than those very expensive DS FUs we've reviewed.

That liner is the "KwikWick II" type; anti-microbial, removable and washable. And pretty comfortable.

Also like the GT920, the Scorpion "EverClear" face shield isn't quite equal to the best in terms of optical quality. And with the more sharply curved aperture of the AT950, it's just a touch less so than the GT920.

But you have to focus pretty hard and move your head back in forth to notice. For normal riding, no problem.

The rotating flip-up visor on the AT950 locks solid and when it is, the helmet feels surprisingly more sturdy than we expected. The rotating flip-up visor also has a nice, strong detent when it's raised to the limit. Just don't ride with it there...

Overall, the AT950 is much like the GT920: both feel solid and both are without the typical "cheap" flip-up helmet creaking and groaning noises when the rotating flip-up visor is opened or closed.

Score: We rate the AT950 as "Excellent" for overall quality and feature set. See the Summary Table at the end of this page for a description of our rating system.

Scorpion EXO-AT950 Slide Show
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet Front View
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet Front Quarter View
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Top View
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet Side View
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet Rear Quarter View Visor Open
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet Face Shield
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet Rear View
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet Eye Port
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet Rear Exhaust Vent
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet Top Vent
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet Visor Removal
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Side Visor Removal Screw
  • Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet Sun Visor
Scorpion AT950 Internal Shape and Helmet Fit

The AT950 internal shape seems slightly different from the GT920, possibly due to the different "face" with the DS-style rotating flip-up visor.

We called the GT920 as just very slightly narrower than "Neutral" on top but with tight cheek pads making it "Narrow" along the bottom half.

The AT950 feels similar enough to call it a "Neutral" to "Slightly Narrow" in the webBikeWorld parlance.

But overall the AT950 -- at least in size large -- fits about 1/2 size small. Scorpion says that the L should fit a 59-60 cm head but it's closer to the low end of that range, so anyone over 59.6 cm or so may want to go for the XL.

I wish we would have ordered the XL, because this size L is tight on both of us and that is backed up by other owners I have talked to.

The GT920 and the AT950 use the same shell, which is made in 3 shell sizes to span the size range, alhtough the head size range on both is greater than usual for a flip-up, from a tiny XS to a massive 3XL.

Bottom line: The GT920 in size XL fits more like a large and the AT950 in size L fits like an "M + 1/2".

Scorpion EXO-R2000 Shape

More information on helmet fit can be found in the webBikeWorld Motorcycle Helmet FAQ page.

Also, see the chart that lists the helmet weights of webBikeWorld reviewed helmets and also by shape on the webBikeWorld Motorcycle Helmet Shapes page.

Score: We'll give the AT950 a "Very Good" rating for internal shape and fit that's tighter than expected.

Scorpion EXO-AT950 Top Vent
Single rocker top vent is easy to find and works well.
Scorpion EXO-AT950 Chin Vent
Large sliding two-position chin vent flows air through and across the top of the chin bar.
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Eye Port and Visibility

Other than a portion of the "beak" at the lower center portion of the rider's view, the AT950 provides outstanding visibility, with very broad sight lines to the left and right and at the lower 4 and 8 o'clock positions.

This is one of the advantages of wearing this type of helmet and the extended visibility from the eye port is a safety factor.

Face Shield

The face shield has two lift tabs, one on each side of center. The face shield moves through 4 detents but the first opening is too large for city defogging. The first position opens about 25 mm from the center of the bottom part of the gasket.

The Scorpion "EverClear" treatment means that the face shield is anti-fog and anti-scratch coated and the anti-fog coating does seem to work pretty well.

The face shield moves with the rotating flip-up visor so if the face shield is raised, when the visor is lifted to its uppermost position, the face shield will close.

Face Shield Safety

The face shield is labeled as meeting VESC-8 standards and this one measures 2.08 mm thick. It is not designed to hold a Pinlock insert.

Touratech Aventuro DS vs. Scorpion EXO-AT950
(L) Touratech Aventuro DS in size XL. (R) Scorpion EXO-AT950 in size L.
Wet Weather Riding?

With the face shield closed, the eye port seals along the top and sides with a gasket and it passes our water entry test.

The top vents, chin vent and brow vent also close tightly. The peak can be removed with two metal screws on either side that can be opened with a U.S. quarter.

Blanking plates are included with the helmet and the AT950 can be used as a full-face helmet when the blanking plates are installed.

Internal Sun Visor

The internal sun visor operates via an on/off slider located on the upper left, just behind the back of the face shield, just like the GT920.

It provides a solid feel and it can be stopped in an intermediate position.

The sun visor has good coverage, although it does have quite a bit of curvature along the bottom and the cutout for the nose that is in the bottom part of the line of sight. I'd prefer more of a straight cut along the bottom.

Scorpion AT950 Visibility

Score: We'll give the AT950 an "Outstanding" for outward visibility.

Scorpion EXO-AT950 Rear Exhaust Vent
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Ventilation and Exhaust

Chin Vent
The chin vent is a large vertical slider that's very easy to locate when wearing gloves. It brings air in through a horizontal slot, located in the back of the chin bar.

The vent has three positions: closed, half open to bring air through the top of the chin bar for defogging and fully open, which flows air both through the top of the chin bar and through the slot in the chin bar.

A sponge filter is included but we haven't figured out how to remove it for cleaning.

Top Vent
The top vent works well and it is a large single rocker, also easy to find and operate, identical to the top vent in the GT920.

The vent flows air in through two large holes through the EPS and the key here is the molding design, which has big channels to direct the air on to the rider's head.

The fabric padded helmet liner is open along the top with matching fore/aft channels that don't impede the air from moving along the top of the helmet.

For optimal performance, owners should check to make sure that the liner isn't blocking the vent holes, however.

Overall, this is a good design but for some reason isn't quite as effective as the excellent top vent of the GT920. There is some added noise when the top vent is open, due to the way the front lip of the rocker catches the air flow.

The rear exhaust vent is the "always open" type and that's fine. It seems to work well.

Scorpion AT950 Ventilation

Score: We'll give the AT950 ventilation system and operation of the parts a score of "Excellent".

Scorpion EXO-AT950 Helmet Liner
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EXO-AT950 Sound Levels

The AT950 is relatively quiet and quieter than most flip-ups, which tend to transmit more noise than full-face helmets due to the design.

The generous padding and the snug fit along the sides certainly help in this regard. The AT950 comes with an installed chin curtain, which helps to control noise from underneath.

The peak works exceptionally well for this type of helmet; the air flows right through and isn't affected by the turbulence from the short windscreen on the 2015 Kawasaki Versys 650 LT Project Bike (Blog).

Speaker and Intercom Installation

The thin bottom gasket allows most intercom helmet clamps to fit and the AT950 has built-in molded pockets in the EPS for speakers.

There's a molded shape along the side of the helmet that may interfere with some intercom mounting systems.

Scorpion EXO-R2000 Noise Levels

Score: We'll give the AT950 a "Very Good" for average noise levels.

wBW Video: Scorpion AT950 Helmet
Helmet Weight

This AT950 in size large weighs 1815 grams (4 lbs., 0.0 oz.). This is relatively heavy compared to other helmets we have reviewed and actually, we were surprised to find that it weighed as much, because it just doesn't feel heavy or top heavy when riding.

This compares to 1754 grams for the GT920 on which the AT950 is based. Like the GT920, the AT950 has a snug fit and good aerodynamics, which help to mask the weight.

For comparison, the Schuberth E1 (review) dual-sport flip-up in size L weighs 1803 grams and the Caberg Tourmax (review) dual-sport flip-up, also in size L, weighs 1775 grams.

All of these weights are available on the wBW Motorcycle Helmet Weights page, along with a chart that lists the helmets by weight and shape on the wBW Motorcycle Helmet Shapes page.

Score: The AT950 gets a "Very Good" for its weight and excellent balance.

Miscellaneous

Scorpion has a five year warranty on the AT950. The AT950 meets the DOT standard in the U.S.A.

webBikeWorld Overall Opinionator: Scorpion AT950
Picks... ...and Pans
  • Very competitive price.
  • High quality construction.
  • Three shell sizes.
  • Solid feeling flip-up.
  • Sleek, modern styling.
  • Thick and comfy padding.
  • Good ventilation.
  • Comfortable.
  • Relatively heavy.
  • Liner can block internal top vents.
  • Tight fit.
  • Non-removable chin bar filter?
Conclusion

At its $269.95 list price, the Scorpion AT950 is a bargain. It's based on the excellent Scorpion EXO-GT920 flip-up, which is also a bargain and a very good basis to build the AT950.

Both the GT920 and AT950 are made in 3 shell sizes, which puts the other dual-sport flip-up helmet manufacturers to shame.

And it's a solid-feeling shell, with almost no flexing or the creaking/squeaking noises found in other low- to mid-range priced flip-ups.

The removable padding is comfortable and the only issue is the tight fit of the AT950; if you're on the cusp, you may have to move one size up.

Like the GT920, it would be nice if Scorpion would offer the AT950 in red, orange, yellow, blue and maybe a few other colors and graphics.

Bottom line: if you're looking for a dual-sport flip-up helmet, this is the one to get.

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SCORPION GT920 Flip-Up
SCORPION AT950 Dual-Sport Flip-Up

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wBW Product Review: Scorpion AT950 Helmet
Manufacturer: Scorpion Sports List Price: $269.95-$289.95
Colors: Solids and graphics Made In: China
Sizes: XS to 3XL Review Date: June 2016
Shell Sizes: 3  
Rating Scale is subjective: Unacceptable, Poor, Neutral, Very Good, Excellent, Outstanding.

Note: Item provided by a retailer, distributor or manufacturer with these Terms and Conditions.

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Note: For informational use only. All material and photographs are Copyright © webWorld International, LLC since 2000. All rights reserved. See the webBikeWorld® Site Info page. Product specifications, features and details may change or differ from our descriptions. Always check before purchasing. Read the Terms and Conditions!

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From "C.H." (July 2016): "I had been in the market for an adv helmet for awhile now and was about to pull the trigger on the Arai when the Scorpion came out.

Long story short, ordered and received helmet before a 5 day trip up to Washington's Olympic Peninsula then back down 101 to Oregon.

The helmet performed flawlessly as we encountered all weather conditions except snow.

I have to agree with almost all points of your review except one, sizing. After checking out the sizing chart I went with XL, which is the same size as my Bell Star helmet. I feel a size up would have been too large but maybe I just have a funky head shape that is accommodating to the Scorpion helmet shape?

Bottom line, this helmet is performs better than I expected in regards to fit, function and quietness factor especially at this price point.

This helmet offers so much at this price range it might just take a bite out of higher-priced adv helmets bottom line."

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