AgustaWestland has launched sales of its new medium lift AW169 helicopter, which is expected to compete against Eurocopter’s EC145 and AS365 Dauphin.
The four tonne class, 10 passenger multirole helicopter will be powered by two FADEC controlled Pratt & Whitney PW210 turboshaft engines and is planned to enter service in 2015. The AW169 will also benefit from extensive use of composites, advanced airframe aerodynamics, next generation navigation avionics and state-of-the-art systems, although few other details have been released.
AgustaWestland says that the aircraft will be targeted primarily at MS/SAR, law enforcement, passenger and offshore transport and utility markets. As such, it will be able to be customised with a range of equipment, including weather radar, FLIR, rescue hoist, cargo hook, searchlight and medical interior.
AgustaWestland notes that the new helicopter, which fits in below the AW139 in its civil helicopter lineup, is the first new design helicopter in its class in 20 years, and is expected to compete primarily with the EC145, Dauphin and Bell 429 in the utility market. It expects to sell over 1000 AW169s over the next 20 years.