US government details AH-64D bid for Indian air force contract

Washington DC
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The US government has confirmed details of Boeing's bid for a $600 million attack helicopter contract in India with the AH-64D Block III Apache.

A notice issued by the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) on 27 December estimates that a direct commercial sale of 22 AH-64Ds, plus weapons, sensors, spares and training would cost about $1.4 billion.

The DSCA also says the possible sale to the Indian air force would include 50 General Electric T700-701D engines, over 1,350 Lockheed Martin AGM-114 Hellfire missiles, 245 Raytheon Stinger missiles, 12 Lockheed/Northrop Grumman APG-78 fire control radars and 23 Lockheed modernised target acquisition designation sight/pilot night vision sensors.

The Indian air force has requested bids from "several foreign suppliers", the DSCA says, although only Russia's Mil Mi-28 is publicly acknowledged.

The competition has restarted after a one-year hiatus. Bell Helicopter previously withdrew a bid based on the AH-1Z Super Cobra. Boeing also withdrew from the competition late in 2009 because of India's insistence on bypassing the US Foreign Military Sales process.

boeing apache ah-64 block iii boeing 
© Boeing

The DSCA says the US government has now approved a direct commercial sale of the AH-64D Block III to India.

If Boeing wins the contract, the AH-64D fleet would strengthen India's "homeland defence and deter regional threats", the DSCA says, adding the Apache will not alter the region's military balance.