The ECE 22.05 standard is starting to go the way of the dodo, and in its place, the new 22.06 standard will rise. Though, what does that mean for riders with helmets that are 22.05 certified? Not much, actually.
Europe’s been championing its new ECE 22.06 safety standard for quite some time now, but there are still many helmet companies that still have products with the 22.05 homologation. ECE 22.06 brings a number of improvements over the aging 22.05 standard, which includes rotational tests, and various impact testing from different angles with stricter criteria. New 22.06 helmets will feature a thicker shell, especially for those helmets that are made out of polycarbonate plastic and not a fiberglass or carbon fiber composite. The expanded polystyrene layer between the shell and the inner liner of the helmets will have to get an upgrade as well, so it’s likely that manufacturers will have to either revise or go back to the drawing board for some of their models.
So what does this mean for helmets in the future? Starting July 2022, only ECE 22.06 helmets will be approved, meaning that every new helmet that wants to pass the ECE’s standards may only go through if the 22.06 criteria are met by the manufacturer.
Whether you ride in Europe or in the rest of the world, you don’t have to worry so much about your helmet being “substandard” in a few months’ time, in other words, illegal to ride in. The 22.05 standard is still one of the most widely-adopted helmet homologations in the world and if you’ve just purchased a new lid with the 22.05 standard, you can still ride in it given that it is in good condition and not past the four to six-year recommended product lifespan. For the Philippines, helmets still need to be approved by the ICC and come with a sticker in order to be sold and used in the Philippines, legally speaking.
Otherwise, helmets in the entry-level spectrum from major manufacturers may get a little more expensive and a little heavier, depending on the model. More premium lids could also get heavier, however, it is likely that the high-end helmets in the markets wil be able to meet the new standard without much change, if at all.
On top of that, the new ECE 22.06 standard could also affect accessories such as a Cardo or Sena and as well as chin, side, or top-mounted action cameras on helmets among a host of other helmet-attached accessories.
In summary, the new ECE 22.06 standard will affect manufacturers and it will be up to them to pick up the slack and churn out new helmets that are tested or redesigned to meet the 22.06 criteria if they are to be sold in Europe. For riders, the use of 22.05-homologated helmets is still legal in Europe and it will be up to your own country’s helmet laws to determine what’s legal and illegal to ride in. For the Philippines, as long as you have the ICC sticker you should be good to go, but we still recommend that you go with a helmet with at least an ECE 22.05 or 22.06 standard for added peace of mind.