AGV certainly raised eyebrows when it introduced its jaw-dropping Valentino Rossi-inspired Corsa and Pista motorcycle helmets a few years ago. Problem was, its full tuck form didn’t quite follow function. Now it does. Introducing the redesigned Corsa R ($799.95) and Pista R ($1399.90). For this review, we’re focusing on the Corsa version.
What’s the Same
Like before the Italian-made shell and EPS (expanded polystyrene) liner comes in four sizes and continues to be constructed from a proprietary mixture of carbon, aramid, and fiberglass (The Pista on the other hand is fabricated from 3K carbon fiber). Sizes XS/S share a shell/EPS as does ML (medium-large)/L. MS (medium-small) and XL have their own specific construction. The helmets are DOT and ECE 22-05 (European helmet standard) certified however Snell certification is absent.
The external design of the R-spec helmet is identical to its predecessor, and AGV claims it was designed to “maximize aerodynamic performance”. The back of the lid, with its nifty looking spoiler is designed to be compatible with race humps in the tuck position, which we can attest to.
The old Corsa vented well, so it’s no surprise that the ventilation system carries over. Five air intakes are used: two in the chin, and three at the forehead, all of which can be closed via plastic switches. Since the chin vent is hidden inside, only the top air ducts can be actuated while riding. AGV says the intake vents were placed strategically where air pressure is generally at its highest. Two fixed exhaust ports behind the head pull dirty, hot air away.
The visor continues to attach to the helmet with a simple pull tab/pin setup that ensures quick and easy faceshield swaps.
Our biggest gripe about the outgoing AGV Corsa was the way it fit. Thankfully designers ditched the thinly padded interior for a plusher version. It’s still a two-piece design attached using plastic pins however the crown liner has a larger surface area.
Fabricated from different materials the crown is reversible depending on preference, or the climate you’re riding in (warm or cooler weather). During our sunny winter time trackday in SoCal, we used the “warmer” side and it kept our noggin cozy and excess perspiration at bay.
The bottom neck roll portion is equally thicker and includes cutouts for the rider’s ears (the old version did not). It also gets a pair of red fabric pull tabs designed for safer helmet removal in an emergency.
Like the top liner, it’s held using plastic pins and a bottom rim lock. Both pieces are machine washable and have a anti-bacterial coating to deter odor in between cleanings. We do have a couple gripes though. First, the material on the closure straps is stitched and cannot be removed for cleaning. Second AGV doesn’t offer different liner thickness so you can’t customize fit like you can on some of the competitors offering within this price range.
Where the original Corsa’s liner positioned your head in an odd way, the R version feels more evenly balanced. So much so that there’s considerable more room in the chin area and your mouth isn’t shoved into the chin bar like we experienced with the helmet of old. The chin venting structure was also widened and distributes air more effectively. It also sports a reshaped removable rubber breath guard.
A thicker faceshield now incorporates a Pinlock 120 insert standard complementing the setup. This along with the improved chin vent eliminates the annoying helmet fogging problem that we occasionally experienced with its predecessor. It does come with a slight weight penalty adding 0.09 pound to the helmet. It now measures 3.49 pound. Like before the standard clear visor comes with tear-off posts. The visor’s center latching mechanism was also tweaked slightly, but we never had any gripes with the previous setup and it continues to perform like it should.
A variety of tint and colored visor options are also available, including the gold-tint shield we wore ($132.95).
What We Really Think
Perhaps the greatest complement we can give AGV’s updated Corsa R lid is when wearing it at the racetrack, it felt like we weren’t even wearing a helmet (good thing). This allowed us to focus on the immediate task at hand: riding. Both peripheral and atop the visor field of vision are excellent too.
Although AGV claims a 29% noise decibel decrease, we couldn’t notice a difference. To be fair, we always ride with ear plugs. We did notice that visor fogging has been eliminated as well as the helmet’s through ventilation system. As always, paint work appears top notch in the gloss black colorway.
With the $799 Corsa R, AGV finally has a helmet that can compete with the competition. If you’ve never tried an AGV helmet you’re going to be pleasantly surprised with the Italian companies latest offering.