Helicopter Report

FlightGlobal takes a look at the latest product developments across the various segments of the helicopter market.

  • Arguably the most competitive part of the helicopter market, the light-single segment is, however, not necessarily blessed with the most modern designs. Nonetheless, new models are in development which will bring innovation to the sector.
  • While not selling in the same quantities as their lighter siblings, light-twin helicopters play a significant role in society, notably in law enforcement and emergency medical services missions.
  • Heading up the weight range means these medium-class helicopters are more capable but more complex – and come with a bigger price ticket. Despite this, there are big sellers in this category, alongside new entrants.
  • A few years ago there were many forecasts that the new super-medium-class helicopters would sell by the bucket-load. This has not quite come to pass, although those operating the rotorcraft in this weight class have used their performance benefits to push into new markets.
  • Heavy-twins sit at the top of each manufacturer’s range and while a downturn in oil and gas services has hurt sales in some cases, interest from the search and rescue operators has remained strong.

505-c-Bell

New models set to bring fresh competition to light-single helicopter segment

Arguably the most competitive part of the helicopter market, the light-single segment is, however, not necessarily blessed with the most modern designs. Nonetheless, new models are in development which will bring innovation to the sector.

Victoriafires09_credit Erickson Air-Crane

Helicopters: the crack troops of the war on wildfires

Rotorcraft are able to tackle forest blazes in a way fixed-wing aircraft can not. We look at what the various assets on the market can offer

Civil helicopter deliveries

The global helicopter market in numbers

A breakdown of the global in-service fleets across the civil and military helicopter markets, together with historic fleet and delivery trends.

H175-c-AirbusHelicopters

Slow-selling super-medium-class helicopters make modest headway

A few years ago there were many forecasts that the new super-medium-class helicopters would sell by the bucket-load. This has not quite come to pass, although those operating the rotorcraft in this weight class have used their performance benefits to push into new markets.

AW139-c-Leonardo

New arrivals in medium helicopter sector threaten the old order

Heading up the weight range means these medium-class helicopters are more capable but more complex – and come with a bigger price ticket. Despite this, there are big sellers in this category, alongside new entrants.

H135-c-AirbusHelicopters

Airbus dominates light-twin helicopter market with German-built duo

While not selling in the same quantities as their lighter siblings, light-twin helicopters play a significant role in society, notably in law enforcment and emergency medical services missions. 

Mi171-c-RussianHelicopters

Heavy-twin helicopters are dragged down by offshore slump

Heavy-twins sit at the top of each manufacturer’s range and while a downturn in oil and gas services has hurt sales in some cases, interest from the search and rescue operators has remained strong.

More helicopter news

H145 and H160-c-Airbus Helicopters

Airbus wins second order from Saudi firm The Helicopter Company

State-backed Saudi Arabian operator The Helicopter Company (THC) has ordered a total of 26 rotorcraft from Airbus Helicopters, its second major deal with the European manufacturer.

Ka-62new-c-RussianHelicopters

Ka-62 helicopter gains Russian certification

Russian Helicopters has obtained certification from the country’s civil regulator for its Kamov Ka-62 medium-twin, ending a delay-hit development effort that has lasted almost a decade.

Andrey Boginsky-c-United Aircraft

Russian Helicopters head appointed to lead MC-21 manufacturer Irkut

Russian Helicopters head Andrey Boginsky is to take over as chief of airframer Irkut – producer of the MC-21 twinjet – after the company’s board agreed to end the tenure of Ravil Khakimov after two-and-a-half years.

German Air Force's H145M with HForce weapon system

H145 to gain MUM-T capability boost

Airbus Helicopters will offer H145 light-twins in future with manned-unmanned teaming (MUM-T) capability following a successful trial of the technology.

Brazil H225M-c-Airbus Helicopters

First ‘naval combat’ H225M handed to Brazil

Brazil has taken delivery of the first Airbus Helicopters H225M in what is described as a “naval combat configuration”.

Russian Helicopters Mi-171 VK-2500-03

Chinese operator Qingdao receives pair of Mi-171s with new engines

A Chinese operator has taken delivery of the first two Mil Mi-171s powered with Klimov VK-2500-3 engines.

Volocopter Incheon

Volocopter in pact with Korean mobility firm following flight demonstrations

Volocopter has joined up with a South Korean firm to explore the feasibility of urban air mobility (UAM) in South Korea, following successful flights over Seoul’s two airports.

Mi-171A2

​Bangladeshi police order two Mi-171A2s

Russian Helicopters has secured an order for two Mil Mi-171A2 rotorcraft from Bangladesh’s police department.

Bell 525 SAF c Bell

Bell flies 525 Relentless using sustainable aviation fuel for first time

Bell flew its 525 Relentless super-medium-twin helicopter for the first time in the summer of 2021 using sustainable aviation fuel (SAF).

Canadian Coast Guard and Bell Textron Canada staff pose in front of the 16th Bell 429 helicopter delivered to the Coast Guard c Canadian Coast Guard

Canadian coast guard receives last Bell 429 helicopter

The Canadian coast guard has received its final Bell 429, the last part of its helicopter “Fleet Renewal Plan”.