Leonardo to supply 18 AW169M helicopters to Austrian armed forces

Austrian Defense Ministry announced on Sept. 21 it has placed a 300 million euro ($352 million) order for 18 AW169M twin-engine helicopters from Leonardo Helicopters in a deal with Italy.

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Leonardo to supply 18 AW169M helicopters to Austria Leonardo AW169M (Picture source: Leonardo)

According to the statement from the Austrian Ministry of Defense, around two thirds of the total cost will be dedicated to the helicopters ; the rest will be dedicated to training, logistics, spares and new infrastructure. Twelve of the helicopters will be used for operational missions, while the other six will be used for training and for secondary missions. The AW169Ms will replace the 50-year-old fleet of French-made Alouette III helicopters. Deliveries are expected to start in summer 2022 and to be completed by 2024.

The AW169M – the military version of the AW169 - is the new light intermediate twin-engine helicopter. Its cockpit’s ergonomic design reduces pilot workload while maximising external visibility, allowing the crew to concentrate on achieving mission objectives. The unobstructed cabin interior enables rapid configuration changes to suit operational requirements. Optional ballistic protection for cockpit and cabin, self-sealing tanks and defensive aids suite ensure high levels of survivability and crashworthiness. The platform can be customised with a large range of equipment, sensor and weapon systems to provide mission flexibility to military operators.