It’s hard to believe that almost one year has passed since we published our “Battle of the Ultimate Helmets” article, a wBW comparison review of the Shark RSR vs. SCHUBERTH S1. The comparison format proved to be very popular with our visitors, so we decided to do it again with two of this year’s most glamorous — and most expensive — motorcycle helmets: the AGV Ti-Tech Rossi VR46 replica and the Suomy Extreme.
The AGV Ti-Tech is an exclusive offering by the maker of Valentino Rossi’s favorite lid and it’s available in two different Rossi graphics, the VR46 “Winter Test” shown here and the “Rossi 500 MotoGP World Champion”. The AGV Rossi patterned helmets carry a list price of $649.95.
Suomy is known primarily as a manufacturer of high-end motorcycle racing helmets, used by many familiar motorcycle racers. The Suomy Spec-1R Extreme, shown here in Michael Fabrizio (World Superbike and MotoGP) livery, is Suomy’s flagship offering for 2005 and lists for $649.99.
A few bucks can be saved by ordering the AGV with less spectacular graphics, or by ordering the Extreme in the “basic” Spec-1R version in a solid color, but one of the primary marketing points of these helmets is their incredible graphics, so why bother with anything less?
Prospective owners will have to decide for themselves whether the money spent is worthwhile, and hopefully the information in this webBikeWorld review will help you decide. Although webBikeWorld regulars know that we’re especially fond of products that have a strong cost/value relationship (i.e., low cost and high value), we also realize that these decisions often come from the heart and not the wallet, and there’s nothing wrong with that.
Read the webBikeWorld helmet reviews, and you’ll learn that 21st Century technology has given us some fantastic helmets at very reasonable prices. It’s almost impossible to purchase a poor quality full-face helmet.
Since just about every full-face helmet has an identical feature set, there really isn’t much left to differentiate one helmet from another when you think about it. Have motorcycle helmets become commodity items? Not yet, because the wide range of retail prices means that there are still some features that consumers value and are willing to pay for.
But consider this: is a $600 helmet 300% better than a 200-buck job? Only you can make that decision, but our experience has shown that the cost/value curve definitely starts to flatten out above $300.00 or so. Compare these helmets to others with the webBikeWorld helmet reviews and let me know what you think.
The bottom line is this: whatever the reason, when you want a high-roller helmet — be it for status, for the cool graphics or to show solidarity with your favorite racer — you won’t regret is as long as you’re pragmatic about the choice and you correctly manage your expectations.
Enough said – I won’t spill the beans about the winner just yet. In fact, is there a winner? Check out the wBWreview of the AGV Ti-Tech and the review of the Suomy Extreme and see for yourself. If you own either (or both) of these helmets, drop us a line at and share your experiences (to thwart scammers, this is not a hyperlink, you’ll have to retype the address in your email system).
NEW! Noise Levels in MP3 Format
The mission of webBikeWorld is to provide you with information that will help you make an informed purchasing decision. We’re always looking for new ways to convey that information, limited, of course, to the technology of the Internet.
Since helmet noise has been a very subjective topic, we have been experimenting with a variety of sound equipment to determine if it’s possible to accurately record the sound levels of the helmets we review.
The goal is to objectively characterize the sound quality and volume, which could provide you with another data point to help you with your purchasing decision. We’re not sound engineers by any means, so we have a long way to go to get this perfected. I’m not sure if our goal will be possible to attain, but it sure has been fun trying!
The subject of helmet noise deserves an entire page, so we’ve recently developed the Motorcycle Helmet Noisepage, which has information on helmet noise and is where we will post MP3 sound files of helmet noise recordings from each of the helmets we evaluate.
By the way, each review in this comparison also includes a brief slide show with large photos illustrating some of the details of each helmet.
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