Buying Motorcycle Gear from AliExpress – Is it Safe?

But by far and away the worst were the Dainese Full Metal RS gloves – upon opening the packaging they came in you can see that there were no pretensions on whether these are real or not – it looks like they were put together from the spare parts bin and sown together haphazardly. The stitching was awful, the leather on the fingers was frayed and the supposed titanium on the knuckles was not only just plastic with a metallic looking paint, the rivets that attached them to the gloves were already coming loose.

So would I every wear gloves from Aliexpress? Well, if they were all like the RS Taichi gloves, I’d probably consider it for the street. But seeing as our success rate was only 1 in 4, you’re probably going to end up spending just as much on gear from Aliexpress than if you just paid full price for the genuine article. And there’s no guarantee how these gloves would hold up on the racetrack if you slide down the asphalt at 100 mph.

Jackets and Pants

From a superficial level, the jackets we bought from Aliexpress actually looked all genuine, which I suppose is because larger textiles like jackets are much easier to make then gloves which have lots of fine details. For our jacket testing, we purchased three jackets:

  • Dainese VR46 Textile Jacket (Now discontinued but $109.95 on Aliexpress)
  • REV’IT Tornado Jacket ($329.00 on Revzilla, $119.95 on Aliexpress)
  • RS Taichi RSJ275 Jacket ($315 on STG, $135 on Aliexpress)

Unlike the gloves we bought, every jacket looked and felt genuine. Like the RS Taichi gloves, we crash tested the RS Taichi jacket a few times and it held up really well. The problem with these jackets though is the armor – how can you have any confidence it is actually CE2 rated armor?

You can’t – there is no way to be sure the armor is the real deal as opposed to some generic plastic. Below is a picture of the shoulder armor that came in the Dainese VR46 Textile jacket from Aliexpress, compared to my Dainese Air-3 Textile jacket which I purchased at a bricks and mortar store:

Aliexpress Motorcycle Gear Is it Safe Dainese VR46 Textile Jacket

Can you tell the difference? Which one is from the Aliexpress jacket and which is from the jacket I bought at a shop? The one on the left is from Aliexpress, but I could not tell the difference from either look or feel. If the Dainese VR46 Textile jacket is fake, it’s a perfect looking replica. Perhaps it is genuine and it’s just excess stock (or it fell off the back of a truck). But I won’t personally wear a jacket with anything less than CE2 armor, and I just can’t guarantee that the armor from Aliexpress is.

Pants

We gave up on purchasing textile motorcycle pants after the second purchase because the sizing was so bad. Our purchases were:

  • REV’IT! Tornado Textile Pants ($289.99 on Revzilla, $128.00 on Aliexpress)
  • Alpinestars A-10 Airflow Textile Pants ($269.95 on Motorcycle Superstore, $86 on Aliexpress)

The sizing was way off – the XL would maybe have fitted a 12 year old, but not me. Why the sizing for the pants is so wrong when the jackets were good, I don’t know. But it obviously reveals the products as fake.

The REV’IT Tornado pants otherwise looked genuine, though we noticed the stiching was pretty poor in a few places. The Alpinestars A-10 pants weren’t even a good replica – details were completely different and not only was the waist way too small for it’s size, the length was laughably short.

Helmets

No. Just no. A million times no. There are thousands of listings on Aliexpress for LS2, HJC, AGV, Bell and other brand name helmets. But please don’t do it. As we’ve recently posted, helmet safety varies widely even among genuine items. Are you really willing to risk your brain to save a few hundred dollars?

We didn’t purchase any helmets from Aliexpress to test, so we can’t comment on the quality or how close they look to the real thing. But it’s like the armor in the jackets – the risk is far too great in wearing them. And if you’re really unlucky, you’ll end up buying a Bell motorcycle helmet and getting something you weren’t expecting:

Bell Motorcycle Helmet Fake Aliexpress

This purchase of a Bell motorcycle helmet turned out to be fake. Can you spot why?

So like just about everything in life, if it’s too good to be true, then it probably isn’t.  Buy genuine, because is your body (and your life) worth saving a bit of money over?

 

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  • deamon0

    Thanks for the article. I had the exact same question on mind and believe it or this exact same quote “if it’s too good to be true, then it probably isn’t” came to my mind when I browsed gear on Aliexpress. That is when I googled and found this article.

    I was baffled. You cleared the air! Cheers.