Leonardo outlined a US$29 million contract award it received by the U.S. Department of Defense for new AW119Kx aircraft in the framework of Foreign Military Sales (FMS) to Israel, with the U.S. Army Contracting Command as the contracting activity. The aircraft will be fully produced at Leonardo’s facility in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Israel’s Ministry of Defence is already an AW119Kx customer. In 2019 a contract was signed for a range of integrated defense training capabilities, which included seven AW119Kx single engine helicopters to be produced in the United States. The training program also includes full flight simulators and other training devices, newly built facilities and a 20-year support package.
Leonardo explains the single-engine, multirole AW119 has proven increasingly successful in recent years in the world’s defense market for both training and operational mission profiles. In 2020, the U.S. Department of Defense awarded a contract for up to 130 AW119s to replace the aging TH-57 Sea Ranger as the primary training helicopter for the U.S. Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard, with 104 units on order to date.
Additionally, the Portuguese Air Force presently uses its fleet of five AW119s for training, Medevac, troop transport and short-range maritime SAR; and may be used for firefighting.
The number of AW119 operators for defense continues to grow with countries such as the U.S., Portugal, Finland, Latvia, Brazil, Ecuador, and the Republic of Korea, among others.
The versatile AW119 features both VFR and IFR capable core avionic systems for enhanced situational awareness, mission effectiveness and safety, giving operators different options to meet their specific needs. The type delivers outstanding overall performance with a strong power margin and the largest cabin in its category, able to accommodate up to six passengers depending on configuration. Over 470 AW119s have been sold to date.