AGV Helmets FAQ
Q: How do you pronounce AGV?
A: Most importantly, the three letters must come in the right order. Namely, AGV and not AVG.
Q: What is the history of AGV?
A: Click here for the AGV Racing History page.
Q: What does AGV stand for?
A: Amisano Gino Valenza. Gino Amisano was the founder of AGV in 1947 and established the company in Valenza.
Q: What is the difference between AGV and AGV Sport?
A: In the late 1970s, AGV USA (a private US-based company) became the official importer for AGV Helmets in the US. While they sold exclusively AGV Helmets, they were not affiliated with AGV in any other way. In 1985, AGV decided to take control over the US market themselves and AGV USA gave up their rights as the sole-importer of AGV Helmets. Since then, AGV USA has been renamed AGV SPORT so as not to directly compete with AGV’s branding in the US. AGV SPORT sells their own line of apparel, with the exception of helmets.
Q: What safety ratings do AGV helmets hold?
A: In the US, all street-legal helmets are required to pass the DOT safety standard, so AGV helmets meet this certification throughout their US line. In addition, most AGV helmets carry the ECE 22.05 safety rating, which is a European standard. You can find more details about this certification here. The ECE rating is held on the entire current AGV helmet offering, with the exception of the Diesel and K3 helmets.
Q: Why aren’t AGV helmets SNELL certified? Are they not as good?
A: There are many different certification standards, including SNELL, SHARP, DOT, ECE, AUS, and others. While all strive to offer the best benchmark for protecting their wearer, they achieve this result in slightly different ways. SNELL tends to concentrate more on the anti-puncture properties of a helmet and ultimate protection in a single crash, whereas SHARP focuses more on energy dispersion and the continued protection of a helmet shell through multiple impacts. The two also test impacts at different angles, SNELL focusing on perpendicular impacts, while SHARP on oblique. Though both are excellent brands of safety, they are also mutually exclusive. In order to successfully pass one angle of tests, a helmet will often fail one or two of a different standard’s tests and vice-versa. AGV aligns more with the SHARP approach to safety and their helmets carry this certification in the UK. Since SHARP is not a US standard, their helmets are produced with DOT and ECE ratings for our market.
Q: What is the average life-span of an AGV helmet?
A: The helmet industry is fairly consistent with this question. Generally speaking, a helmet should be replaced either 5 years after date of purchase or 7 years after date of manufacturing, whichever comes first. Over time, changes in humidity and temperature can weaken the interior EPS liner and comfort liner within the helmet. Both of these layers play an important part in the dispersion of energy in the event of an impact. Replacing the helmet before these begin to break down is important for adequately protecting your noggin.
Q: Where are AGV Helmets Made?
A: There are only a few factories in the world with the technology to produce high-quality, safe helmets. The factory location is not always consistent as AGV and other companies constantly bid for contracts at the best plants for the job. Regardless of the country of origin, all quality control, design, and inspection takes place in Valenza, Italy where AGV is located.
Q: How do AGV Helmets fit?
A: While all helmets are based off of the natural shape of the human head (which lies somewhere between round and oval), AGV specifically tends to offer a more egg-shaped design. This means that the back of the helmet is noticeably wider than the front while the overall shape leans towards round oval. Within the line-up, AGV has several variations of their shape, however, most fall between intermediate oval and round oval.
Q: I have a pressure point in my helmet, can I do anything to change the fit?
A: Many AGV helmets have replaceable cheekpads and liners that will allow for adjustment of the interior shape and fit of the helmet. Those helmets that have optional accessories available for purchase include the GP-Tech, K4 EVO, T-2, AX-8, and Grid. Beyond switching out these items, any alteration to the inside of the helmet will likely result in loss of warranty and risks compromising the integrity of the helmet.
Q: How many times can I crash in my helmet before it needs to be replaced?
A: Even the smallest impact can have a dramatic effect on the integrity of a helmet shell. Most structural damage to a helmet is not visible to the naked eye, but instead is contained inside the EPS liner in the form or hairline cracks or stress fractures. Once this interior EPS liner breaks down, it is no longer able to disperse the energy from a collision effectively. If you crash in your helmet, you should replace it. End of story.
Q: Oh, mylanta! I, like, so totally ADORE Valentino Rossi! Can I buy his helmetz?
A: For many years now, AGV has produced replica versions of Rossi’s MotoGP helmets. Every year a few new graphics are released based on Rossi’s latest racing designs. Since their production process follows the same standards as the MotoGP regulations require, AGV holds true that the helmets you buy at retail are exactly the same as what their world-class racers wear.
Q: Which is better, AGV Helmets or Shark Helmets?
A: Read our detail breakdown on the pros, cons, and differences between AGV and Shark Helmets.
Q: How should I care for my AGV Helmet?
A: While you will find a plethora of sprays, polishes, and appliques for your helmet, the best practice for keeping it clean will likely be good old-fashioned soap and water. This applies for both the shell and the faceshield. Especially for the faceshield, it is recommended to use a micro-fibre cloth to eliminate the risk of creating minute scratches or streaks as you clean. In addition, it is best to remove the shield from the helmet when cleaning to ensure that you are able to clean every part of the shield.
The interior of many AGV helmets can be removed, which makes them easy to hand wash with soap and warm water. Allow any damp parts of the helmet to air-dry after cleaning so as not to trap moisture into the lining and create an opportunity for mold or mildew to set in
Occasionally, in dirty or dusty riding conditions, you may find that the faceshield mechanism may retain some particles. If cleaning is required, AGV recommends that you use mild soap and a toothbrush and follow-up with a small amount of grease after the base-plates have been cleaned.
The only other portion of your AGV helmet that may need maintenance is the air vents. From time to time a bug may become lodged in the airway and need to be cleared. Any type of compressed air, applied sparingly, should clear the larger debris. Reverting to soap and a toothbrush will take care of any remaining residue.