Boeing and Airbus Helicopters signed a Memorandum of Understanding to partner and fulfill the requirements of Germany’s Schwerer Transporthubschrauber (STH) heavy-lift helicopter program. 

Airbus Helicopters thus joins the industrial base constituted by Boeing around the offer of the H-47 Chinook, an upgraded variant of the CH-47F Block II. Other companies in the partnership include CAE Lufthansa Technik, Honeywell Aerospace, and Rolls-Royce Deutschland. 

“Building on decades of experience as a partner of the Bundeswehr, Airbus Helicopters is excited to join Boeing’s Chinook Germany industry team and to partner with Boeing on delivering maximum operational availability to the Bundeswehr,” said Wolfgang Schoder, General Manager of Airbus Helicopters in Germany. “The H-47 Chinook is a proven, mature program in service with many of our allies, and is the optimum solution for Germany with an excellent price-performance ratio.” 

Boeing, with the CH-47F Chinook, is competing against Sikorsky, with the CH-53K King Stallion, to win a tender that includes about 60 new helicopters and their maintenance, for a total of around €5.6 billion euros. The aircraft are to be delivered by 2031. 

Since 2017, Germany has been attempting to replace the fleet of 70 Sikorsky CH-53G Sea Stallion helicopters flown by the Luftwaffe. Briefly suspended in late 2020, the STH program was revived in January 2021. 

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After canceling the tender in September 2020, Germany resumed the competition to find a heavy-lift helicopter replacement.