Shark Spartan GT Pro Carbon helmet review

Shark Spartan GT Pro Carbon

We’ve been testing Shark’s mid-range helmet for several thousand miles - here’s what we thought

Pros  Comfortable, looks great, sun visor is handy
Visor lock can be fiddly, ventilation could be better

Key features

- Flip-down sun visor

- Four-point visor locking system

- Double rear spoiler

You can pick up a Shark Spartan RS motorbike helmet for as little as £299.99 (RRP), so what are you getting for spending more than two and a half times that on the Spartan GT Pro Carbon we’re testing here? The clue’s in the name, on two fronts. The ‘Pro’ bit means it’s packed with all sorts of extra features (we’ll get to those soon), and the ‘Carbon’ part refers to the helmet’s construction.

It’s a composite helmet featuring layers of fibreglass and carbon fibre over expanded polystyrene (EPS), inside of which you’ll find fully removal pads with “antimicrobial properties” - handy if (like me) you have a sweaty bonce. Those pads also have an emergency release system for fast removal should you suffer an accident wearing the helmet. 

Thankfully, we haven’t had to perform the ‘ultimate test’ with the Spartan GT Pro Carbon, but what we can say is that the interior padding is extremely comfortable, not while the helmets being worn, but also when putting on and removing. Strapping up is done via conventional D-ring with the usual popper to secure the ‘loose’ end and stop it flapping around. 

On the move, wind noise is kept to a relative minimum, and while ventilation from the two chin bar slots (which can be closed, along with the exit holes at the rear) isn’t bad, there are plenty of lids out there that keep things much breezier. On a warmer day, you’ll be pleased about those antimicrobial properties, and that the lining can be easily removed for a wash…

A Pinlock 120 Max Vision is included in the box, but we instead fitted a Visin heated visor insert, which the visor’s design features plenty of room for, unlike the Arai RX-7 GP and Concept XE I’m currently testing. The Spartan GT Pro ended up being something of a testbed for us, as it also had a Cardo Packtalk Edge fitted for the duration. On that front, there’s a nice, flat side surface for mounting the system itself, and Shark has left plenty of room inside the helmet to fit speakers. 

Although many riders will just fit a tinted visor by default, many will appreciate the flexibility of keeping the Spartan GT Pro Carbon’s standard clear visor to use on cloudier days, and dropping down the handy internal sun visor when the sun has his hat on. 

The tint isn’t particularly dark, so it can be a little lacking when the sun is particularly low and bright, but it’s a great feature, and the lever to drop it down is easy to operate with a gloved hand on the move. Should you want to fit a tinted visor, it’ll cost around £60, and be easy enough to fit thanks to the helmet’s tool-less release system. 

I normally prefer simpler helmet liveries, but I’ve grown fond of the black/white/orange colour scheme of our test sample, which goes with the generally sporty shape of the lid. On that front, there’s loads of choice, although what you choose does have some bearing on the price. Something like an all-black Spartan GT Pro Carbon will set you back £479 (RRP), while a fancier colourway is more like £509.99. 

Should you buy a Shark Spartan GT Pro Carbon?

That price pits the helmet against some very nice lids including the Arai Quantic, but it’s worth noting that there are some great deals around on the Shark at the time of writing, with many colourways on sale for not much over £350. It’s a decent buy at full price, but if you can get a deal like that, the GT Pro Carbon is brilliant value.