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Alpinestars Tech Air Off Road Review

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Alpinestars Tech Air Off Road Review



Alpinestars’ Tech-Air Off-Road is not intrusive when riding and visually unnoticeable in the front. (Alpinestars/)

Alpinestars protects riders with airbags for more than fourteen years. Italian company began recording crash data in 2003. MotoGP started using Tech-Air Race as early as 2009. Tech-Air Race had been available for the public since 2011. Alpinestars have developed many airbags, including the Tech-Air 10, Tech-Air 5 Tech-Air 3 and most recently the Tech-Air 7x. These systems are designed for roadracers and riders on the street, but what about off-road riders? With the Alpinestars Tech-Air Off-Road dirt bike and adventure riders will now benefit from the same protection as the Tech-Air Race Street, 10, 7,x, 5, and 3

Alpinestars Tech-Air Off-Road ($999.95).

Alpinestars Tech Air Off-Road (999.95 dollars). (Alpinestars/)

Alpinestars designed the Tech-Air Off-Road for the first time in 2017. The system was used by professional rally drivers a year after its design. By 2023, the system will be worn by 83 Dakar competitors. The Tech-Air Off-Road, which includes two argon canisters, will now be available for the general public at $999.95.

In the 2024 Dakar, the Alpinestars Tech-Air Off-Road had 323 individual deployments and zero false positives.

Alpinestars Tech-Air Off-Road deployed 323 units in 2024 Dakar with no false positives. (Alpinestars/)

Tech-Air Off-Road Details

The system is usually worn under a jacket or as an undergarment, but it can also be worn on top of base layers and jerseys. Alpinestars’ Tech-Air Off Road offers both passive (CE Level 1, shoulder, elbow and back) and active protection (airbag). The electronic control unit is located in the back protector and uses six triaxial sensors (3 gyroscopes and 3 accelerometers). It reads every millisecond. The system is activated by one of the two canisters in the event of an accident. Located in the back protector, the “bag” will inflate, covering the chest, back, neck, and shoulders within 40 to 60 milliseconds, depending on the size of the garment. The Tech-Air Off-Road comes in five sizes, ranging from small to large. The ECU and airbag can be removed for cleaning from the under jacket.

The Tech-Air Off-Road’s ergonomics allow for easy layering in cold conditions, but are highly vented and breathable for warmer temperatures.

The Tech-Air Off-Road’s ergonomics allow for easy layering in cold conditions, but are highly vented and breathable for warmer temperatures. (Alpinestars/)

Tech-Air Off-Road comes with three different modes: Street (optimized for tarmac roads and traffic conditions), Rally (for rallying) and Enduro (for enduroing). Each has its own algorithm. Street mode is “optimized for tarmac roads and traffic conditions” and is the same algorithm used in every other Tech-Air system. Rally mode is “optimized for fast off-road action on any type of terrain.” Enduro mode is “optimized for low- and medium-speed trail off-road action on any type of terrain.” To activate the system, simply zip up the under jacket connecting an internal magnet, giving power to the system. The system will be activated by a two-second vibration haptic.

An LED Display shows battery level (Green: over eight hours; Yellow: four to eight hours; Red: one to four hours; Flashing Red: less than one hour), standby status (Blue: system active; Red: system fault) as well as the selected mode (Green).

The LED display shows the battery status (Green: more than eight hours, Yellow: four to eight hour; Red: between one and four hours; Flashing red: less than an hour), as well as standby status (Blue – system is active; Red – system fault). (Alpinestars/)

When using Rally mode on fast fire roads or bumpy two-tracks, the system will not deploy during G-outs and jump landings. Enduro is what it sounds like. It is best for riding slowly and with technical skills. The system was designed to protect against moderate to severe crashes. However, if you have a slight tip-over the system might not deploy, to conserve canisters. Alpinestars sells two replacement canisters for $169.95. Alpinestars recommends that after four deployments the system be sent in for an airbag inspection and possible replacement.

Off-road, the Tech-Air system can differentiate between a heavy load on the bike and an actual crash, determining if the airbag bladder needs to be inflated or not.

Tech-Air can determine whether the airbag is needed to inflate or not when the bike is off-road. (Alpinestars/)

Riding Impression

The Tech-Air is comfortable, and the off-road system is almost invisible. Our ride through Death Valley was accompanied by a cold and rainy climate. We were led by Honda HRC rally racers Skyler howles and Ricky Brabec, two-time Dakar champion and six-time AMA motocross/supercross champ Jeff Stanton. I was able wear two base-layers under the Tech-Air off-road (size small) and a middle-layer on top of it, along with my Alpinestars ST-7 Gore-Tex Adventure bike jacket. The same layers were worn on the second day with the Alpinestars Session Race as the shell. Both outfits were equally comfortable. The only time I noticed the Tech-Air Off-Road on my body was when tucking in behind the bars as the chest and back protectors don’t arch with the curvature of the body in a scrunched position.

In the back protector is where the two gas canisters and six triaxial sensors can be found. A red light next to each canister indicates if the charge has been deployed or not. The storage pocket on the back of the system can hold a hydration bladder of up to 3 liters.

Two gas canisters as well six triaxial sensor can be found in the back protector. Each canister has a red light that indicates whether the charge was deployed. The pocket at the back of this system can store a 3 liter hydration bladder. (Alpinestars/)

The system is simple to use. The LED display allows you to select the desired mode and turn on the system by zipping the garment. Tech-Air goes to sleep after five minutes if there is no movement detected by the sensor. So make sure you check the system’s status after each coffee break. Battery life is 30 hours and charging takes approximately four hours through the USB port on the LED screen located on the bottom-left of the chest protection. The system button on the LED screen allows the rider shuffle between modes (short presses: change riding mode, long presses: manual switch off).

Alpinestars’ Tech-Air Off-Road connects to the Tech-Air app via Bluetooth for system updates, status checks, and records rides through an enhanced Google map.

Alpinestars’ Tech-Air Off-Road connects to the Tech-Air app via Bluetooth for system updates, status checks, and records rides through an enhanced Google map. (Alpinestars/)

Alpinestars claims Tech-Air reduces impact forces up 95 percent. That’s pretty significant. Whether you’re an avid adventure bike rider, dual sporter, or trail rider, the Alpinestars Tech-Air Off-Road is designed to provide additional protection in the event of a crash. Most motorcyclists wouldn’t ride without proper protection. For some, the Tech-Air Off-Road is just as essential as a helmet or a pair boots.

Alpinestars’ Tech-Air Off-Road LED display is waterproof. The electronics located in the back protector are water resistant.

Alpinestars’ Tech-Air Off-Road LED display is waterproof. Water-resistant electronics are located within the back protector. (Alpinestars/)

I managed to stay fully dry in my Alpinestars Gore-Tex adventure bike gear.

My Alpinestars Gore-Tex Adventure Bike Gear kept me dry. (Alpinestars/)

In Rally mode and Enduro mode, the Tech-Air Off-Road will not deploy on most jump landings.

Tech-Air Off-Road is not deployed on many jump landings in Rally or Enduro modes. (Alpinestars/)

Two-time Dakar winner (2020, 2024) Ricky Brabec on his practice Honda HRC rally bike.

Ricky Brabec, two-time Dakar champion (2020 and 2024), on his Honda HRC practice rally bike. (Alpinestars/)

Honda HRC rally racer Skyler Howles sand surfing in the wet dunes.

Skyler Howles, Honda HRC rally driver, sand-surfing in the muddy dunes. (Alpinestars/)

Skyler and Ricky let me lead for a little. Braap! They're gone. That didn't take long.

Skyler and Ricky will let me take the lead for a bit. Braap! They’re gone. They’re gone. (Alpinestars/)

Six-time AMA champion Jeff Stanton steering with the rear on his Triumph Tiger 900 Rally Pro.

Jeff Stanton is a six-time AMA champ, and he steers his Triumph Tiger 900 Rally Pro from the rear. (Alpinestars/)

I swear there was a sign that read “Lift front wheel if you wear protection.”

I swear there was a sign that read “Lift front wheel if you wear protection.” (Alpinestars/)

Beautiful Death Valley after a heavy rain.

Beautiful Death Valley following a heavy downpour. (Alpinestars/)



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