Leonardo announces AW09 contracts and partnership


Leonardo made several major announcements at Heli-Expo 2023, including the signing of multiple global contracts and a key collaboration for the single-engine AW09 helicopter. Heli-Expo 2023 took place in Atlanta, Georgia, on 7-9 March 2023.

The company signed preliminary sales contracts for more than 50 units with several customers worldwide, including Aero Service Representação in Brazil; Synerjet Latina SA in Colombia, Peru and Chile; Helitech Asia in Southeast Asia; Safomar in South Africa; Diskopsa for Panama and Guatemala; Heliflite in Oceania; and Aero Facility in Japan.

In addition, an important agreement was signed between Leonardo and Metro Aviation, one of the largest privately owned helicopter emergency medical service (HEMS) operators and service providers in the USA. The collaboration between the two companies aims to support the introduction and positioning of the AW09 in the USA and in doing so, benefits from Metro Aviation’s experience and capabilities in the development of aircraft interior and STCs, service and training.

“What we have announced at Heli-Expo is the culmination of three years’ work through which the AW09 benefited from considerable enhancements and has now reached a final configuration, allowing it to offer the level of competitiveness that the market expects,” said Gian Piero Cutillo, MD of Leonardo Helicopters. “Indeed, the AW09 is generating a very positive response from all geographies around the world. Rotorcraft companies highly welcome the AW09 for its outstanding features and multirole capabilities that represent a significant evolution compared to existing products in this category. The preliminary sales contracts signed provide clear evidence of it. Also, combining our industrial capabilities with Metro Aviation’s extensive and recognised experience in operations and support enhances the AW09 value proposition, providing superior mission capabilities to the operators of this platform in a prime single-engine market like the USA.”

The AW09 single-engine helicopter was one of Leonardo’s key highlights at Heli-Expo 2023. The full-scale mock-up of the next-generation helicopter in its final configuration was displayed at the Leonardo booth, attracting lots of interest within the rotorcraft community.

Acquired three years ago by Leonardo, the AW09 perfectly complements Leonardo’s product range in the long light single segment, introducing an all-new design aircraft. One of the latest evolutions is the decision to on-board on the AW09 the Safran Arriel 2K engine, in line with the targeted AW09 high supportability and reliability levels.

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Lauren is a freelance technical journalist. Over the past 15 years, she has worked on a wide variety of B2B publications and websites, including a stint on Business Jet Interior’s sister title Traffic Technology International, as deputy editor from 2014-2016. She has a degree in English from the University of Exeter. Lauren is mum to two busy little girls. She is always in demand!

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