Friday, February 09, 2018

Airbus Helicopters hopes to sell the US Army the H145M

via FlightGlobal
Airbus Helicopters believes it may be possible to sell an armed variant of the H145M to the US Army – almost five years after the service cancelled its armed aerial scout (AAS) programme.

Christian Fanchini, head of operational marketing at the French manufacturer, speaking at a Singapore air show media briefing, said that it could offer a replacement for the army's now-retired fleet of Bell Helicopter OH-58 Kiowa Warriors.

In 2013, the army shelved its AAS procurement, instead moving heavier and more complex Boeing AH-64 Apaches into the role, to operate alongside unmanned aerial vehicles.

The US Army already has experience Airbus Helicopters' products, with the UH-72 Lakota, based on the earlier commercial EC145, used for training and utility missions.

Fanchini says any offer would not be an armed UH-72, however. "It would be the H145M, not the Lakota," he says, as the latter's engines "are not powerful enough to support a full weapons load".
Story here. 

Well Bell and McDonald Douglas Helicopters might have something to say about this but I think something is needed in this role.

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