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ADV NewsAlpinestars Reveals New Details On Airbag System For Off-Road Use

Alpinestars Reveals New Details On Airbag System For Off-Road Use

We get the scoop on the soon-to-be-released ‘Tech-Air Off-Road V2’.

Published on 01.27.2022

A few weeks ago, Alpinestars announced they would be releasing their long-awaited off-road airbag system to the public later this year — the Tech-Air Off-Road V2. While different versions of the safety system have been in use since 2017, only elite rally racers have had access to it. Details have been foggy though about its usage in the field, maintenance requirements and specific features once it becomes publicly available.

ADV Pulse reached out to Alpinestars to get more details on the new product, and while the company is still finalizing some of the finer points, we were able to get a clearer picture of this potentially game-changing product. To start with, the Tech-Air Off-Road V2 System will be coming to market this October with a price of $899.95. We also found out it will have a total of 6 fall detection sensors (3 gyros and 3 accelerometers) as well as 2 different riding algorithms.

Tech-Air Off-Road V2 features
The Tech-Air Off-Road V2 will feature 6 fall-detection sensors, 2 riding-style algorithms and CE Level 1 armor.

The Tech-Air Off-Road’s standard fall-detection algorithm is tuned for a variety of different terrain inputs from high speed to slow technical. As far back as 2014, the brand has been datalogging crashes from racers in different off-road riding disciplines, including the Dakar Rally, to develop a fool-proof crash detection algorithm that can differentiate serious off-road accidents from typical light tip overs and scuff-ups. The system will be configurable with a phone app, allowing riders to choose from two different styles of riding they intend to do (Rally / Light ADV-Street). However, if you decide to take it to a motocross track, those types of forces would trigger an inadvertent discharge. 

Tech-Air Off-Road V2 details
Users can swap out the airbag’s canisters while on the field if they use the two available deployments. The Tech-Air Off-Road also includes an integrated water bladder pocket.

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So how does it work? The Tech-Air Off-Road V2 will come with two Argon-filled gas canisters plugged into the garment. The system runs on a battery which provides 30 hours of continuous usage before needing to be recharged. If the rider has a fall that triggers the sensors’ thresholds, one of the gas canisters is discharged to fill the airbag for the first of two available deployments. After a few minutes, the airbag returns to a flat state and is ready to be deployed again using up the second and final canister. After a rider has two falls, the two canisters need to be replaced, which can be performed by the end user. Theoretically, adventure riders could bring an extra set of canisters on a longer ride to reset the system in the field if they are expecting a lot of falls. And after running out of canisters, the garment still has a base level of protection, featuring CE Level-1 rated armor in the shoulders, elbows and back. 

Tech-Air Off-Road V2 details
Over 80 riders used the Tech-Air Off-Road V2 airbag system at this year’s Dakar Rally, including champ Sam Sunderland.

Alpinestars is still working out the servicing requirements and aren’t able to confirm how many airbag deployments you’ll get before it needs to be refreshed and tested by a professional. Also, if a rider has a very high-intensity crash, the system would need to be inspected sooner than usual. The current consumer airbag systems Alpinestars offer cost $299 for canister replacement, sensors check and bladder servicing. Total weight hasn’t been locked in yet but the company’s target is to stay within 6 pounds for a size Large.

The Tech-Air Off-Road V2 will also be washable and includes a rear pocket designed to carry a water bladder. For rigorous riding, having the water bladder stored in a tight fitting armored jersey seems to make a lot of sense. Hydration packs and water bladder pockets in jackets can tend to have free play that can throw off your balance.

Tech-Air Off-Road V2 specs

Alpinestars reports that this year’s Dakar Rally program had some 81 riders using the product with great success. Even Dakar Rally Champ Sam Sunderland had a big fall during the race that set off his Tech-Air Off-Road V2 airbag system, which may have been a significant factor in allowing him to continue on. Alpinestars airbags not only protected the 2022 champion but all top ten finishers in the grueling 14-day race. This new technology has the potential to have a major impact on improving safety for off-road riders as well. As the technology evolves and costs drop, using airbag systems could become as universal as wearing a helmet.

We look forward to testing the Tech-Air Off-Road V2 Airbag System as they become available and we’ll be sure to report back with more details soon.

Author: Rob Dabney

Rob Dabney started a lifelong obsession with motorcycles at the age of 15 when he purchased his first bike – a 1982 Honda MB5. Through his 20’s and 30’s he competed in off-road desert races, including the Baja 250, 500 and 1000. Eventually, his proclivity for exploration led him to dual sport and adventure riding. Rob’s never-ending quest to discover what’s around the next bend has taken him on Adventures in Mexico, North Africa, Europe, and throughout the American West. As a moto journalist, he enjoys inspiring others to seek adventure across horizons both near and far.

Author: Rob Dabney
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8 thoughts on “Alpinestars Reveals New Details On Airbag System For Off-Road Use

  1. What does it weigh? Maybe I missed that. For local single track or GNCC racing I think this might be too much. I’d have to try it on. I didnt use to wear anything when racing or riding (young and dumb) Now I do wear a chest protector but still dont like it. Thanks for the write-up Rob!

    • Thank you! It hasn’t been finalized yet but it looks like Alpinestars is targeting < 6 pounds for a size large. Probably a few pounds heavier than a typical armoured jersey. It does feel liberating riding without upper body protection but for me somewhat terrifying being used to always having it on. I've had enough big falls off-road and walked away unscathed to feel like it's worth the weight. Depends on the terrain though, if you've got a lot of rocks or trees, it's a must.

    • Hey Will. It’s possible they may offer some type of service plan but as of now it looks like it will not be a requirement.

    • Hey Jon. We don’t have any official details on that yet but if you take out the existing elbow, shoulder and back protector of the jacket it should work fine as long as it is not too tight fitting. Keep in mind that the jacket must be large enough to accommodate the expansion of the airbag in the event of a crash. Will report back as soon as we hear more.

  2. the most suefull is arund neck, inflating protection which locks the neck and head, reventing spin inuuries. a sort of super neckbrace… Heite and some cheap chinese veste have it. MY helit saved my life thanks to this function.. Doesn’t seem that the A.Stars have it, same for some other famous brands, which still have the tarmac race culture…. 🙁 So what is the point to have 6 snesors and all if you end up in a wheel chair… I adapt an airbag system for my endruo jacket with a longer trigger rope, for the two main usual offroad crashes : passing over the bars and preventing whiplash , and high speed crashes prtecting upper body (and even hips, with the helite jacket system). In both cases, the simple rope system works…

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