HJC i10 Review: an excellent budget full face with Snell approval.


HJC i10 full face motorcycle helmet review.

The i10 is the replacement for HJC’s top selling all-rounder helmet, the CL-17.

That helmet was loved by many as being a decent quality, Snell approved helmet at a decent low price point.

HJC i10 rank orange motorcycle crash helmet rear view
Rear view of the orange/black HJC i10 in Rank graphics

Which meant many folks were gutted when HJC finally pulled the plug on it.

Well, the good news is that the HJC i10 has been dropped into the same sweet spot. It’s a low-cost polycarbonate all-rounder helmet that is one of the first helmets (and cheapest helmets) to be Snell 2020D approved.

So you can see right from the off that if you’re after a helmet that offers proven levels of protection, that should work an a range of motorcycles – and that doesn’t cost much – then the HJC i10 is going to be a contender.

So, here’s our most comprehensive look at the HJC i10 to help you work out if it’s worthy of being your next helmet.

Looking to buy an HJC i10?

Please click below to visit the HJC i10 helmets pages at our recommended stores – all checked for great online ratings. And if you buy from any store, we get a small sum from the sale at no extra cost to you – a massive THANKS! (it’s how we finance the site).

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The HJC i10 is a worthy successor to the much-loved CL17.

According to owners, it’s got great ventilation, is comfortable, has an quality shield setup – and they love that it offers excellent bang for your buck.

HJC i10 motorcycle crash helmet fear graphics top view
This one’s the i10 Fear in red/black

It’s not the quietest helmet around and it’s lacking for some features like a sun visor, EQRS and a Pinlock being included in the box (though the shield is ready to take a Pinlock if you need one).

But it’s a great all-rounder helmet with decent build quality. And being one of the cheapest helmets with Snell approval, it means you can get a great all rounder helmet – one that’ll work on everything from a Step-thru to a Softail – that’ll offer premium levels of protection without maxing out your credit card.

A highly recommended helmet for US riders (sorry rest of the world, it’s a US only helmet!).


 (more about helmet safety)

Polycarbonate shell in 2 shell sizes, multi-density EPS liner… so far, so OK.

But the big news is that the testing team at Snell have been putting a bunch of i10’s through their paces in their test labs and it’s been approved. And that means that if you buy on i10, it should give you excellent protection if you are unfortunate enough to take a spill.

hjc i10 motorcycle helmet taze black design side view
i10 Taze graphic

Oh, all except for size XXXL because HJC either decided to not have that tested or it failed the test – not sure which one, but it’s not Snell approved.

Either way, they’re all DOT standard helmets and if you buy an XS-XXL helmet, you can buy one and ride on in the knowledge that it’s as protective as any helmet you can find. And that’s particularly great from a helmet that can be picked up for under $150.

Of course, if maxing out on its protective capabilities is your thing, you’ll be on the look out for some other stuff too. Things like an optically-correct, Pinlock visor to keep things clear, and a double-d ring fastener to keep it securely tied to your noggin.

The good news is that the i10 has all these as standard, though the slightly less good news is that it doesn’t come with a Pinlock antifog insert in the box. So if you suffer from fogging, you’ll have to pay out another $20 or so for the Pinlock itself.

hjc i10 semi flat anthracite motorcycle helmet side view
Anthracite grey i10

It’s also lacking EQRS and a drop down sun visor – which could both help in terms of safety.

According to the HJC website, there’s also a feature called ‘cervical collar’. There’s no real detail on exactly what they mean by that and whether they just mean the neck roll acts as a cervical collar – so we’ll leave that here.

But overall, in terms of protection, the i10 is a full face helmet with that excellent Snell stamp on it and that just about says it all: the HJC i10 should be excellent and gets our five star rating.

Helmet Noise

(more about helmet noise)

HJC does say the i10 has been designed in a wind tunnel to create a helmet with excellent aero properties and keep noise to a minimum.

HJC i10 rank crash helmet side view
Hi Viz Rank graphic HJC i10

But it’s also got a ton of vents in there and that usually equals lots of ways for noise to get into a helmet. Plus, it’s sold without a chin curtain – again a chin curtain can be really useful for reducing the amount of noise as well as cutting lots of airflow into the helmet from below.

Quite a few owners reckon it’s a fairly quiet helmet, especially at lower speeds. While others say it’s a bit loud.

All in all then, we’ll plump for the i10 being about average for noise. For reference, that should also equate to it being really quiet if you’re used to an open face helmet and quiet compared to most flip-front lids as they tend to be noisy compared to full face helmets.


(more about helmet ventilation)

The old HJC CL-17 had decent head vents but the chin vents were a bit poor.

HJC i10 semi flat black crash helmet top view
Twin crown vents visible on this semi flat black i10

And it seems like HJC’s been listening because they’ve stuck an array of four chin vents operated by a single slider into the chin bar. That’s an impressive bunch of vents and certainly looks to be the biggest array of chin vents we’ve seen outside of a motocross arena!

That single slider is also very easy to find and use – even in gloves.

They’ve also carried on with that small brow vent just above the face shield – with a tiny slider that’s really tricky to find when you’re on the move and especially tricky if you’re wearing gloves.

But up top, there’s a pair of crown vents that are easy to find and there’s decent sized sliders on there which, according to owners are easy to operate.

A couple of useful links…

Coolest looking helmets
Snell helmet reviews

The top two vent holes on the chin take air up onto the back of the shield and the bottom two direct air around the mouth.

All the top vents take air through the helmet shell and into fairly shallow venting channels moulded into the EPS liner before venting out the back of the helmet through a couple of exhausts hidden behind that rear spoiler.

hjc i10 motorcycle helmet fear graphics side view
Another Fear graphic i10

OK, that’s enough of the features – the main question is does it all work?

And the great news is – yes it does.

The word is that it’s improved over the CL-17 – and even that was good for ventilation. According to i10 owners, the i10 flows a ton of air – enough to keep you reasonably cool when on the move even in summer.

And that improved chin bar vent really works – although if you live somewhere that gets cold or rainy – or even is humid – you may well need to invest in that extra Pinlock insert to keep the shield mist free because the vents alone probably won’t be enough.

But all in all, if you’re after a great venting helmet, then the i10 delivers.


(more about shields)

As mentioned, the face shield’s actually an optically-correct shield. It’s made of polycarbonate like all shields, which means it’ll give great UV protection; and HJC quote this as 95%.

The shield works on a ratchet with six detents that are stiff enough to hold the shield open until you really start to motor. And it has a shield lock and opening tab front-bottom, auto-locking whenever you close the shield.

hjc i10 motorcycle helmet taze design side view
Taze i10 in green

According to owners, that tab’s pretty easy to find and operate – and it’s good to have the tab in the middle because it means you can more easily open the shield with either hand.

Pushing up on the opening tab unlocks the shield and puts it into the cracked-open city position that’ll give you a bit more ventilation while keeping your eyes and face protected.

The shield does have Pinlock tabs but, as mentioned, the i10 doesn’t come with a Pinlock in the box so you’ll have to budget for that if you live somewhere where fogging’s a problem.

The shield on the i10 uses what HJC calls its RapidFire shield replacement system. That’s a quick-change shield where you simply open up the shield, pull a trigger on either side and the shield pulls off. It’s very simple and very quick to get the hang of and allows for easy swapping to a smoke shield or for cleaning after a ride, so it’s well worth having.

HJC i10 semi flat blue helmet side view
Semi flat blue i10

Overall then, most owners like the way the i10’s shield system works. A couple say they don’t like the shield lock while others say it’s surprisingly easy to use.

And while HJC don’t make any noises about it, a couple of riders said the field of view was surprisingly wide – which is always a good thing to hear.

For some riders it’ll be a shame that it doesn’t come with a Pinlock as standard in the box tho.

But overall, HJC seems to have done most things right with the shield on the i10 (and let’s not forget, this is a budget helmet!)

Comfort and Sizing

(more about comfort and sizing)

The HJC i10 is available in sizes XS-XXXL – so it doesn’t include the outsized 4-5XL of the old helmet which will be a shame for some riders.

It’s designed to fit medium-oval headshapes though which is a good thing as that’s most of us in the West.

Inside the i10 you’ll find HJC’s usual SuperCool removable/washable liner which is moisture wicking and is a nice soft liner that’s widely liked for being very comfortable.

HJC i10 semi flat black crash helmet rear view
Semi flat black i10 showing rear spoiler and aero design

As we often find with HJC helmets, a few owners complain that the cheek pads are tight when they first wear the helmet. That’s not uncommon but isn’t usually a long-term problem as they wear in nicely and quite quickly.

If you find yours don’t, then all is not lost because HJC does sell cheek pads in different sizes for you to get the fit just right.

Something else you might encounter if you decide to buy an HC i10, is that the sizing, while mostly true, can be a tad on the small size for some folks. So if you measure your head and decide you’re inbetween sizes, then we’d advise to go for the larger size as it’ll likely fit best.

Inside the helmet, there’s a pair of glasses grooves so if you ride in eyeglasses, you should be fine.

And the overall impression from owners is that it’s somewhere between comfortable to very comfortable to ride in. Which I guess is the most important thing as an uncomfy helmet makes for an unhappy and distracted rider, right?

Looks & Graphics

There aren’t too many graphics available for the HJC i10 at the time of writing. You can get a grey (anthracite) blue, black or white in semi flat as well as a gloss black/white.

There’s also the Taze, Fear and Rank graphics in a range of colourways.

Take a look up and down the page to find examples of each – or please click through to the i10 helmets pages at our recommended stores to find more design options and find any i10 helmet deals.

Best places to buy an HJC i10?

Please click below to visit the HJC i10 helmets pages at our recommended stores – all checked for great online ratings. And if you buy from any store, we get a small sum from the sale at no extra cost to you – a massive THANKS! (it’s how we finance the site).

Shop for helmets at Amazon

HJC i10 Video

Here’s a useful 11m look around the i10 from Chaparral.

Other stuff – fasteners, audio, weight, build quality, chin curtain, warranty

All i10’s come with a good ole double-d ring fastener. Read more on double-d rings here. It’s also got a snapper on the strap to stop the end flapping around.

HJC has made the i10 ready to accept their own SmartHJC 10B or 20B bluetooth headsets. That means there are also some reasonable sized speaker pockets in there (where the SmartHJC speakers will apparently snap in place) as well as a nice microphone and wiring recess moulded into the plastic shell liner. That’s a great feature and should stop you having to stuff the wiring behind the liner to keep it in place.

HJC i10 in white side view
Solid white i10

It should also mean the i10 will accept most other 3rd party bluetooth communicators too – and we’ve heard that one owner with a Cardo Scala Rider kit managed to fit it without any problems.

It’s not the lightest helmet ever but it’s OK. Weighing in around 3.7lbs (1.67Kg) it’s a few ounces heavier than the average polycarbonate full face helmet, though a couple of owners said it feels light weight – and none we found complained it’s too heavy, so you should be fine.

Build quality of the helmet is actually pretty good according to most owners – though that always seems to come with the suffix ‘at this price’. So don’t expect Arai levels of build quality and you should be OK.

The i10 comes with a breath guard but not with a chin curtain, which is a shame.

Finally, the i10 should come with a decent three year warranty.

Crash Helmet Buying Guides

For (hopefully!) other useful information to help you when buying your next helmet, check our various guides - or have a look at our top helmet lists where we've got the top 10 rated helmets overall and best budget/safest/full face/flip-up/sportsbike/track helmets.

Good Alternatives to the HJC i10?

scorpion exo r 410 motorcycle crash helmet techno graphics grey
Scorpion EXO-R420

Looking for a great performing helmet or one that’s been Snell approved for safety? Here’s some great helmets you might want to check out:

Available for around the same money as the i10 is the Snell approved Scorpion Exo-R410. It’s got EQRS too, is reasonably quiet and has an anti-fog coated shield, unlike the HJC.

Shoei RF-SR

For more money you can buy the premium quality Shoei RF-SR. That’s another snell certified all rounder helmet – and this one was also SHARP 5 star safety rated in Europe too. It comes with a Pinlock insert, has EQRS and is a well liked and proven helmet.

Shark Ridill

For something a bit different, how about the French Shark Ridill. That is a  SHARP 4 star safety rated full face with built-in sun visor, for around the same price as the i10.

AGV Numo Evo ST

Or if you’ve a bit more money and would consider a modular helmet, there’s the AGV Numo Evo ST – a 4 star safety rated helmet with sun visor and a racing inspired design that’s great value.

Looking to buy an HJC i10?

Please click below to visit the HJC i10 helmets pages at our recommended stores – all checked for great online ratings. And if you buy from any store, we get a small sum from the sale at no extra cost to you – a massive THANKS! (it’s how we finance the site).

Shop for helmets at Amazon

Other full face helmets

There are loads of great alternative full face crash helmets. You can check out our Top 10 full-face crash helmets list to see our best rated helmets. And we also recommend you take a look at all our full face crash helmet previews and reviews as well as our safest motorcycle helmets pages where you'll only find helmets that are Snell certified or SHARP four or five star rated - so you'll know you're wearing the best protection out there.

Star Ratings

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hjc-i10-full-face-motorcycle-helmet-reviewHJC's i10 might be a low price, polycarbonate helmet - but it really delivers. OK it might not be the most fully-featured full face helmet in the world, lacking a few of the latest bells and whistles. But owners love it because it's got great ventilation, an excellent shield system and it's comfortable. Oh, and the fact it's amazing value and comes with that all important Snell approval stamp making it one of the cheapest Snell rated helmets on the market! All in all, a great all rounder helmet and excellent value and well worth the money.


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