Airbus Helicopters has secured its largest-ever order for multi-role H145M helicopters, with up to 82 of the aircraft purchased by the German Armed Forces.
Airbus confirmed on December 14, 2023, that the German Bundeswehr placed an order for 62 H145M helicopters, with the option to purchase 20 more.
Subsequently the agreement is also the largest-ever order for the HForce weapon management system.
“We are proud that the Bundeswehr has decided to order up to 82 H145M helicopters,” Bruno Even, CEO of Airbus Helicopters, said. “The H145M is a robust multi-role helicopter, and the German Air Force has gained a significant amount of operational experience with its H145M LUH Special Operations Forces fleet. We will ensure that the Bundeswehr receives the helicopters in accordance with the very ambitious delivery schedule which includes first deliveries in 2024 less than a year after contract signature.”
The German Army will receive 57 helicopters, while the Luftwaffe’s special forces will receive five. The agreement also includes seven years of support and services.
“Within minutes, the helicopter can be reconfigured from a light attack role with axial ballistic and guided weapons and a state-of-the-art self-protection system into a special operations version including fast rappelling equipment,” Airbus said in a statement.
The basic version of the ordered H145Ms will be equipped with fixed provisions, including the weapon management system, HForce, developed by Airbus Helicopters.
This allows the Bundeswehr to train its pilots on the same type of helicopter that is used for operation and combat.
The Bundeswehr already operates 16 H145M LUH SOF and eight H145 LUH SAR helicopter and the United States (US) Army employs almost 500 helicopters from the H145 family under the name of UH-72 Lakota.
Current operators of the H145M include Hungary, Serbia, Thailand and Luxembourg, and Cyprus has ordered six of the aircraft.
The global fleet of the H145 family has now accumulated more than seven million flight hours.