Bell Helicopter, June 15, 2009 - FORT WORTH, TEXAS - Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. company, today provided an update on the 429 helicopter program and expected certification date.
Bob Fitzpatrick, senior vice president of Business Development and Commercial Programs stated, "We continue to make great progress on the 429 program and expect it to be certified by the end of this month with customer deliveries beginning shortly after certification."
The 429 is a new light twin that Bell is adding to its portfolio of products. The 429 currently has roughly 300 letters of intent, which will be converted to firm orders once the helicopter certifies. With over 60% of these orders coming from international customers, this helicopter is intended to re-establish Bell in the global marketplace.
Neil Marshall, program director for the 429 said, "Everyone who comes in contact with the helicopter comments on the size of the cabin and its flexibility. And those who have been fortunate to fly in it talk about its power, smooth quiet ride and the ergonomic modern cockpit that reduces pilot workload."
With the interior space of a medium-class helicopter, but with direct operating costs of a light the 429 has seen demand from all market segments. Fitzpatrick also said, "We really listened to what the customer wanted in a helicopter and I believe they won't be disappointed with the 429. Its performance is even better than we had promised."
About Bell Helicopter
Bell Helicopter, a wholly owned subsidiary of Textron Inc., is an industry-leading producer of commercial and military, manned and unmanned vertical lift aircraft and the pioneer of the revolutionary tilt rotor aircraft. Globally recognized for world-class customer service, innovation and superior quality, Bell's global workforce serves customers flying Bell aircraft in more than 120 countries.
About Textron Inc.
Textron Inc. is a multi-industry company that leverages its global network of aircraft, defense, industrial and finance businesses to provide customers with innovative solutions and services. Textron is known around the world for its powerful brands such as Bell Helicopter, Cessna Aircraft Company , Jacobsen, Kautex, Lycoming, E-Z-GO, Greenlee, and Textron Systems.