AGV GT Veloce helmet, £349.99
Time tested: Eight months/2000 miles/one big crash
What’s good? I’m sat here writing this, with no apparent sign of a head injury, five days after throwing myself head-first at the Anglesey track surface at somewhere around 60mph and counting. I lost control of a Triumph Speed Triple R and was thrown over the top, landing on my back with enough force to compress the thick foam hump on my race suit and scuff the leather at the base of my neck. The AGV took the bulk of the impact, absorbing enough energy to leave me conscious, if somewhat dazed and confused at what had just happened. The damage shows the helmet has had a serious impact at the rear, with the composite-fibre shell heavily cracked and an exhaust vent breaking free of its mounting. Some might look at this helmet and think the damage is a sign of weakness, but those people need a reality check. A helmet is a disposable product that is designed to do its job once and then be retired, with a very big thank yoyu. This did its job very well, and the proof of the pudding is that I’m still able to eat my pudding. This model of AGV was recently awarded five stars in the UK Government’s Sharp impact tests and this is the second time I’ve heavily impacted a five-star helmet and escaped without a head injury. I think this justifies the Sharp scheme and shows why it’s worth investigating a helmet’s safety performance before buying it. As well as performing well in an impact, the GT Veloce provides great peripheral vision, the fit can be customised by adjusting the foam lining or adding extra pads that are provided at the time of purchase. The aerodynamics are designed for bikes with tall screens or no screen, and I’ve found it to be stable and quiet on both. Even the price is decent, at £349.99 for a composite-fibre helmet that’s so well equipped.
What’s not? It’s hard to criticize a brain-saving helmet, but the visor came off in the accident and it’s not beyond manufacturers like AGV to find a way of stopping that. The sizing can be hard to get right because there’s a big step in shell size between medium and large (2014 models come with a new intermediate ML size to address this). The Pinlock anti-mist visor insert is also tricky to perfect and I never managed a decent seal from mine (should have read the instructions!).
Quality rating: 5/5
Value rating: 5/5