You’d think that Belgian headwear brand Lazer could rest on its laurels. Established in 1919 it’s now the number one helmet brand in Australia and the top third non-domestic helmet in the US. Nearing its first century, you could think that it could switch to cruise control and continue selling helmets to its current fan-base forever more.
Lazer isn’t new to the UK. Previously the helmets were distributed by Saddleback. Having signed a distribution deal with Madison a few weeks ago, 2013 is the beginning of Lazer’s British domination. Madison says “This is the biggest ever, most co-ordinated and all-embracing marketing campaign in the history of Madison”. Given that confidence, you’ll probably be living under a rock if the brand doesn’t enter your radar soon.
We sent Grace over to see Lazer at its Belgian HQ to see what was new and to get a bit of background to the brand. She sent in this report from an Antwerp bar:
Lazer says it wants to improve your head with its range of helmets and sunglasses for every genre of riding, skiing and watersports. Lazer is big on fit and it has two patented technologies for fitting, so reckons wobbly helmets will be no more. Its whammy card is the Rollsys system: a turnable knob is located atop the helmet, so fitting can be adjusted with one hand as you ride; convenient and time saving. Its second patent is called Autofit, the head basket is spring-loaded and fits snugly around your cheese-box. As your head (or in my case, hair) expands, the spring doesn’t lose tension, remaining strong for long-term use.
For gadget geeks, the Oasiz comes with a detachable GoPro mount, eliminating straps, Velcro and gaffer tape. Lazer has also invented a light-mount as an addition to the GoPro clip. The Magic Buckle feature on their helmets is a magnetically-fastening buckle, minimising trapping your throat or fingers in a fiddly clip. With this investment in gadgetry, don’t be surprised if the range of Lazer gizmos expanded in the future.
As well as helmets, Lazer has a range of sunglasses . The eyebrow-raising Magneto are frameless specs which magnetically attach to your helmet for fuss-free eye protection.
Their childrens helmets are all Autofit, simplifying the hassle of fitting growing heads. Madison have also introduced a ‘grow with’ program, offering a £10 rebate to customers replacing a child’s Lazer, Bell or Giro helmet with the next size up.
Lazer’s approach to womens’ products is satisfyingly unpatronising. Knowing that easy money can be made from pink products, brand commitment can’t. The Kiss helmet has been designed for ponytail wearers and four colourways that cater for women who dress outside the Barbie spectrum.
Even when safety is concerned, price is important. Their entry-level helmet retails at £19.99, while the Wasp time trial helmet fetches a wallet-carving £299.99- however there is a helmet for every budget in between. Their MTB range starts at £69.99.
Soon to launch, lazersport.co.uk will be a Shopatron website, with all transactions made through a local Lazer dealership. Expect to hear a lot more soon.