AgustaWestland, July 09, 2012 - AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, is pleased to announce that its Family of new generation helicopters is making its first ever public appearance at the Farnborough International Airshow this week. The Family comprising the AW139 intermediate twin together with the first prototypes of the AW169 light intermediate and AW189 8-tonne class will be performing in the flying display on the first three days.
Additionally in the AgustaWestland static display the Family will be represented by an offshore configured AW139, utility configured AW169 full size mock-up and a SAR configured AW189 full size mock-up. The AW189 is contender for the UK’s SAR-H programme, offering a new technology design with significant industrial benefits for the UK.
AgustaWestland is the first rotorcraft manufacturer to introduce a Family of new generation helicopters. The AW169, AW139 and AW189 offers the market a Family of products spanning the 4 to 8-tonne weight classes. Sharing a common design approach and cockpit, complying with the latest safety and certification standards and with maintenance and training commonalities; the Family concept offers a range of benefits to operators of more than one type.
Establishing the advantage of this common design philosophy serving a wide range of missions, minimising operating costs and enhancing operational flexibility, AgustaWestland is providing new cost saving opportunities for helicopter fleet operators.
Commonality in performance across a fleet allows operators to develop/use similar procedures and operational approaches. Similarities in equipment packages ensure common procedures & training are built for the Family-based fleet, enhancing flexibility in planning. A common stock of removable items across the fleet, for example passenger seats, offers greater flexibility. Similarities in systems architecture and positioning in the airframe provide a common approach to the helicopters maintenance. Fleet management in hangar is also optimized thanks to a common set of ground support equipment and maintenance tools. Savings in training are achievable due to a reduction in time for pilot type ratings when moving from one platform to another within the Family.
With the AW139 being the best selling intermediate twin in the global market and the AW189 and AW169 already flying and set to achieve certification in 2013 and 2014, the Family has found rapid market success with orders for two out of three or all three types from major large fleet operators such as Bristow Group, Bond Aviation Group, Bel Air, Gulf Helicopters, INAER, Weststar Aviation Services and Era.
The AgustaWestland Family concept features inherent growth capability with each product within the Family set to benefit from the latest innovations installed into the other models. AgustaWestland will capitalize on this new philosophy and commonalities for new developments. AgustaWestland will apply the same approach to new commercial products as it expands the family range in the future.