Impressive aero and cooling performance makes the Trenta a good all-rounder
We first got our hands on the MET Trenta at Eurobike this year, having originally spied it on the noggins of Dimension Data riders during the Tour de France. Fresh on the back of reviewing the Manta aero lid, we were interested to find out if the Trenta could improve on that model by shoe-horning improved levels of ventilation into a potent aero package. The result? You better believe it can – though it will cost you.
Our test model is the 3k carbon-caged version, which weighs in at a claimed 215g in a medium and will cost an eye-watering £265 when it ships in December. However, you can also have a plastic version for £220 at a 15g weight penalty – hardly the end of the world if you’re in the market for a pro-level lid.
The Trenta meets its brief to give the optimal combination of ventilation and aero performance by firstly including a total of 19 vents in a strategic pattern, including eight forward-facing strips and a small ram scoop atop the body.
This allows plenty of space for air to enter, but that’s only half the story. Ten further cutouts on rear and upward-facing sections of the helmet, including two large exhaust ports around the base of the shell, create a pull-through convection so warm air can escape, actively pulling air into the inlets on the front.
Those vents, including the two large rear exhaust outlets, are cut into an aerodynamically-optimised shell, which visually mimics much of the Manta’s profiling.
In fact, the large gaping holes in the rear are completely shrouded behind a tapering curve which shapes the air over the head and directs it down the length of your back. Certainly, it’s been optimised for a rider that can withstand an aggressive position on the bike, complete with flat(ish) back.
In practise, while it’s impossible to give quantifiable figures in testing (although MET claims a seven per cent reduction in drag versus a “traditional” helmet), there’s no doubt that this is an effectively-ventilated helmet. Air is drawn through the carcass of the lid very easily even when you’re rolling at relatively pedestrian speeds.
One characteristic to be aware of, however, is the tight fit around the circumference of the head. That’s down to the fitting system – a dial adjustor – which extends and (importantly) tightens around the entirety of the head. Not all fitting systems do this, but MET has clearly chosen to focus on a tight fit in this area, while not focussing as much on an over-the-head fit.
A few reasons for this spring to mind – firstly to keep the upper space clear of material and allow air to more easily flow through, secondly to create a secure ecosystem in which airflow is controlled through the vents, and thirdly to create a secure fit around the most rounded part of the head.
It’s a very secure-feeling solution, although if I’m being brutally honest I personally prefer a little less pressure around the circumference of the head while riding. As I’ve discovered with other MET helmets in the past, a secure fit usually means a relatively tight fit, and while that isn’t to my personal taste, it may be to others and does give an undeniably secure fix on the head.
On the head, the Trenta cuts a svelte profile that comes up relatively narrow (another family trait), increasing the sense of enclosure, and that can in turn only help towards overall aero efficiency, while the outside of the shell sports visual tweaks to help keep air attached over the top of the helmet.
Thanks to the low profile, outward visual range is good, although the frontal area does protrude slightly so you can just about see it in your field of vision when riding. As ever, you quickly dial this out, but stick a pair of sunglasses on and suddenly things can get a little cramped, occasionally gently bumping the sunglasses down onto your nose. Still, it feels more open than the Manta I tested earlier this year.
There’s plenty of padding inside along the ridges of the EPS foam and frontal area of the fitment system, so while I found the fit slightly tight on my head, it was never uncomfortable. The straps are also soft – handy as they anchor to the top of the lid and help to cocoon the backside of the head when the helmet is on – and the clips are standard fare and easy to adjust, fitting just off-centre under the left jaw.
One thing that is missing is a MIPS system, which is a shame given the £220-£265 asking price depending on whether you go for the carbon or plastic-caged version. However, with the helmet being so lightweight and with such good ventilation for an aero lid, you have to say that your money has gone into other points in its favour.
The MET Trenta is a distinctive-looking lid (especially in the carbon version we have on test with that weave), and certainly meets the brief of creating a very lightweight, pro-level lid that combines impressive ventilation and perceived aero performance.
You need to be aware that the fit is classic MET – that is to say, relatively narrow – while the fitment system cocoons your head more than most competitors. That’s a sensation that I wouldn’t personally choose, but then that observation is completely subjective and may actually be to the taste of others. If you’ve got the budget, the Trenta is easily worth considering as your next race-ready lid.
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