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Airbus first serial H160 helicopter took to the skies


The first serial H160 to roll off the brand new assembly line in Marignane performed a flight demonstration on the 17 December in front of the H160 team in an end-of-the-year celebration of the programme’s achievements in 2018, Airbus Helicopters said today.


Airbus first serial H160 helicopter took to the skies The first serial H160 to roll off the brand new assembly line in Marignane performed a flight demonstration on December 17 (Credit: Anthony Pecchi/Airbus Helicopters)


The aircraft’s unique livery is a testimony to the several hundred people working towards the platform’s certification at the end of next year, the programme’s industrial maturity, and its seamless entry into service as they have all signed the helicopter.

The first serial aircraft will join the three prototypes, which have already accumulated over a 1000 flight hours, in the final steps of the flight test campaign, namely confirming that the modifications that have been introduced through the serial configuration have no impact on the helicopter’s excellent handling qualities.

Airbus' H160 helicopter has been selected by the French Armed Forces to replace 18 Fennec and 111 Gazelle choppers of the French Army, and 42 Fennec of the French Air Force. The Air Force's Super Puma VIP and Puma would be replaced by the H225M Caracal, while 74 NH90 are currently replacing the Army's Puma platforms.

The H160 is a 6 tons class helicopter capable of speeds of 160 knots. It can carry 12 passengers at distances of up to 120 nautical miles.