The AGV AX8 Dual EVO Tour
The AX8 Dual EVO is an upgraded version of the original AX8. Crafted out of fiberglass-carbon-kevlar shell it was made to handle both off road and on road riding. It also has the ability to be worn in three different configurations. The peak and shield are removable allowing you to ride with the helmet completely devoid of attachments, with just the peak and goggles or with everything installed. The extended chin bar was designed to offer additional shock absorption in a crash, and the lower edge of the helmet was thoughtfully built to work well with back protectors.
Paint, Graphics and Overall Quality
The paint on the AX8 Dual EVO is nicely laid with a smooth finish. There are a couple spots of dirt and the underlying graphics have some rough edges. The clear coat is durable and I always manage to bash my helmets off of things so they get tested regularly for chip durability. The graphics packages are nicely done, not overly loud or aggressive and they fit the profile of the helmet.
Overall, I'll rate the AX8 Dual EVO as "Very Good" for initial paint and quality. I would rate it “Excellent” for durability of those finishes. The "Very Good" is due to the paint flaws. At this price point it should be a bit better finished.
AX8 Dual EVO Fit, Internal Shape and Liner
Fitment is a narrow oval. Tight on the sides of your head with plenty of room front to back. My head is a long oval and is what many refer to as an Arai head shape. I generally wear a Signet Q sized medium. The AX8 Dual EVO tested here is a size large and other than being a bit snug is a comfortable fitment. Knowing your head shape goes a long way to finding the right helmet.
The liner is plush and made from Coolmax and Dry-Comfort materials and is coated with a sanitizing finish. It is smooth against your skin, wicks moisture away very well and once the helmet is on your head you don't think about it. Pretty much what you want the interior to feel like.
Overall I would rate the Fit, Shape, and liner as “Very Good”. The narrow fit is going to limit the audience for this helmet.
Face Shield, Eye Port and Visibility
The shield is thick, optically correct, and slams shut with authority. I would trust it stop any debris coming in without question. The eye port is sealed, waterproof, and big! The best part about dual sport style helmets is the enormous field of vision they offer. The AX8 Dual EVO does not disappoint in this regard.
The shield does have limited detents with only two positions other than closed and open. These are both close together and the upper of the two serves no real purpose. The lowest opening position is about twice the average de-misting found on other helmets. It does let in a lot of cooling air and because of the long chin of the helmet the air is not directly in your eyes. So while the opening is larger than average it works really well.Goggles can be fitted with the shield installed which is a nice touch as well.
Visibility out of the eye port is “Outstanding.” There aren’t many helmets that offer a wider field of vision. I would rate the AX8 Dual EVO “Exceptional” for the seal and shield change process.
Ventilation and Air Flow
Ventilation consists of a large chin vent, two top vents and the rear exhaust vents. This is where this helmets loses a lot of versatility in my opinion. I rode both behind a windscreen and without a screen and could not tell the difference in air flow.
The helmet is hot. With the visor removed and using goggles it's not an issue but for dual sport riding with the shield it could be a problem. The visor thankfully has that large first detent that lets in enough air without blasting your eyes. You can also fit goggles without removing the shield adding flexibility. If, of course, you're carrying goggles.
With a beak and an elongated chin you would expect it to be a problem at speed catching wind and rattling your head around. It doesn't. Sure if you tip your head straight back at 90 that beak tried to tear the helmet from your head but a shoulder check isn't an issue. The helmets aerodynamics are smooth as well, no buffeting either behind a screen or in the open air.
The AX8 Dual EVO gets an “Below Average” rating for ventilation.
Overall for noise I would rate the AX8 Dual EVO “Excellent”. I don't ride with ear plugs so noise is always a concern. The wind noise is present but not overwhelming even when fully exposed.
The AX8 Dual EVO in size large weighs 3 pounds 6.4 ounces. Not too bad considering the other DS style helmet tested weighed over 4 pounds. Icon Variant review.
The AX8 Dual EVO is a “Very Good” helmet with nice features, comfortable interior, and some very unique versatility built into it.
It carries both the ECE and DOT certifications. Priced at $399 for a solid the AX8 Dual EVO is a very viable alternative to stalwarts like the Shoei Hornet, and the Arai XD4. I would rate this helmet a buy. If your head fits the helmet it's comfortable, durable, and it looks good. AGV also has a very good track record for safety.