Simpson Mod Bandit

The popular tough-guy helmet gets a modular update.

Simpson's Bandit helmets are tough. They have been known for years as old-school, no-nonsense motorcycle helmets with a distinct and aggressive style. A couple of years ago the Ghost Bandit came out, which introduced a handful of modern comforts to the otherwise pretty basic line, and now the Mod Bandit is here to expand that even further.

Easily opened and closed with one hand, the Mod Bandit is the first modular motorcycle helmet from Simpson. It is DOT and ECE certified, though not Snell tested. There are multiple intake vents located in the front of the helmet and two on the top, all of which are adjustable. The helmet also locks in the chin-up position, so riders don’t have to worry about it snapping down due to wind while on the road—though it is recommended to keep the chin bar down during riding.

The Simpson Mod Bandit in Matte Black.
The Simpson Mod Bandit in Matte Black.Kevin Roche

The shield of the helmet is easily removed without any tools using the hand screws on the sides. Integrated interior sun shields are available in a range of colors, so riders may put in a clear internal shield with a tinted external, retaining some protection when riding at night with the main visor up but still oriented primarily for daytime use.

The interior is soft and comfortable, but runs almost a full size bigger than the Ghost Bandit. If you’re in between sizing, definitely reach for the smaller size. Cheek pads come ready for your Bluetooth communicator as well, with pockets for speakers positioned right where your ears would be. The antibacterial internal liner is also removable and washable to make sure it stays fresh and clean.

Coming in under 4 pounds, the Mod Bandit weighs less than the Shoei Neotec II but a little more than the Schuberth C3 Pro. At $480, the price point it is only slightly more than the Ghost Bandit, less than the Shoei, but right up there with the C3. In our testing, however, the Simpson is a little louder than the direct competition on the road. The venting works and it’s nice that you can limit airflow when you want to as well. Being able to lock the chin bar up is great for riding around town or once you’re close to your destination and talking with friends from bike to bike.

Simpson Mod Bandit with internal sun shield.
The Mod Bandit’s internal sun shield is easily actuated with a small switch on the left side of the helmet.Kevin Roche

If you love that Simpson style, you can celebrate because this is its most functional helmet yet. It offers many of the same features as other in-class helmets while adding that unique Simpson edge.