The Future Vertical Lift team wrapped a highly successful flight-testing program with the Bell V-280 Valor for the Future Long-Range Assault Aircraft competition.
For the Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft, the team has made excellent progress on Bell 360 Invictus build and systems integration work. Bell is proud of our workforce and the exciting investments being made to ensure Army aviation has the reach, speed, range, agility, and lethality needed to win on the battlefield. Bell is focused on these generational opportunities to revolutionize vertical lift.
The V-280 and Bell 360 programs are not only relevant for today’s fight but are designed to maintain a decisive advantage for American aviation for decades to come.
Making monumental strides forward to deliver greener, more modern solutions for our customers, Bell’s Innovation and Commercial Business teams introduced sustainable aviation fuel into our flight operations and demonstrated new capabilities for our eVTOL vehicle, Autonomous Pod Transport (APT) .
And finally, the iconic Bell Nexus concept vehicle showcased the future of advanced air mobility in the Smithsonian Arts and Industries Building’s “FUTURES” exhibit in Washington, D.C.
Bell teams closed large sales to the Helicopter Emergency Medical Services (HEMS) community, private owners and flight schools throughout Europe and Africa, and military agencies in the Asia-Pacific region.
The Bell 525 continued to excel in flight testing, completed a flight using sustainable aviation fuel and set out on a demo tour with various customers across North America. To bring the aircraft experience closer to regions that could benefit from its oil and gas transportation capabilities, the team opened a Bell 525 Experience Center at Stavanger Airport in Norway.
Consistently praised for our dedicated customer service and support network, Bell grew our footprint with new authorized maintenance centers across the globe and added a maintenance repair and overhaul service at the Commercial Assembly and Delivery Centre in Mirabel, Quebec. As reflected through 156 commercial aircraft deliveries, the team celebrated a successful year filled with exciting advancements, greener operations and meaningful program milestones.
For Military Business developments in 2021, Bell completed the first Bahrain AH-1Z Viper and the100th consecutive on-time delivery of the AH-1Z Viper to the U.S. Marines.
Our teams in Amarillo began manufacturing the UH-1Y for the first international operator, the government of the Czech Republic, and celebrated the whole H-1 program’s milestone of 400,00 flight hours. Soaring past a similar flight hour achievement, the Bell Boeing V-22 completed 600,000 flight hours, further showcasing the longevity of the tiltrotor platform. The U.S. Marine Corps still relies heavily on the iconic aircraft and used its MV-22s to support humanitarian aid and disaster relief missions in Haiti in September 2021.
Ensuring success throughout the business begins with our employees and establishing a winning culture. Bell Textron Canada celebrated 35 years of excellence at our Mirabel facility, reflecting on the substantial contributions to the country of Canada and our global commercial customers. Our teams achieved one of the best total recordable incident rates (TRIR) in Bell’s history with a rate of 0.44.
Today, Bell looks forward to the numerous opportunities on the horizon including the final decision of the Future Long-Range Assault Aircraft program, the Bell 525’s path to certification, advancements in electrification of our products and the growth of our company culture.
A Year of Great Achievements for Bell in Canada
The year 2021 was definitely special as the Mirabel Facility celebrated 35 years of building and delivering aircraft. This tremendous year was filled with challenges that lead to great successes for Bell in Canada.
The team achieved the impossible by putting in place a whole drive-thru vaccination service to help the fight against COVID-19. More than 8,000 people—employees, families and people in the community—raised their sleeves for a vaccine at Bell’s Commercial Assembly and Delivery Centre.
This year is also marked by the 400th delivery of a Bell 429. Bell was fortunate enough to celebrate this milestone by delivering the aircraft to the Canadian Coast Guard who possesses the biggest fleet of Bell 429 in the world.
As always, Bell is proud to support military and law enforcement year after year. As floods and wildfires have troubled the west side of the country, the Calgary team was ready to support the fleet for their missions.
Because Bell always seeks for better ways to support customers, we launched the Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) Center in Mirabel. This new service allows Bell to support the full lifecycle of the aircraft and offer convenient and exceptional maintenance for our customers.
Last year showcased the great capabilities of Bell in Canada. By making the impossible possible and thrilling our customer, we rose to every challenge thrown at us. We can’t wait for the next 35 years to show what we do best: push the boundaries of vertical flight and solve real-world problems.
Bell UH-1Y and AH-1Z military helicopters
Bell 525 and sustainable aviation fuel