EBACE 2011: Turkey’s Genel Havacilik Orders an AgustaWestland Grandnew Helicopter

 - May 17, 2011, 4:40 AM

AgustaWestland (Stand 7010) has sold a GrandNew light twin helicopter to Turkey’s Genel Havacilik. The aircraft will be used for VIP missions and is slated for delivery next month. The order marks the type’s entry into the Turkish market.

“We selected the GrandNew as the aircraft of choice in its class to satisfy our requirements to operate in the most demanding hot and high conditions of Turkey,” said Genel Havacilik CEO Ali Sulyak.

According to AgustaWestland, the helicopter is the first type-certified light twin to enter service with a new electronic flight instrument system featuring synthetic vision technology.  Other pieces of kit on board include a helicopter terrain awareness warning system and global positioning awareness navigation software.

Agusta has sold 70 of its GrandNew variant worldwide and 30 of its other helicopter types into Turkey. The company predicts a rosy future in the country for VIP/corporate transport and EMS shuttle services. 

According to Emilio Dalmasso, AgustaWestland’s senior vice president for the commercial business unit, the EMS sector is growing, and VIP market is recovering, having suffered most during the economic downturn. He said that Agusta has more than a 70-percent share of the light twin market for VIP applications.

Dalmasso added that the Finmeccanica company’s AW139 medium twin and the GrandNew light twin models are selling well, with 500 AW139s sold so far, more than a third of which are for offshore applications. The GrandNew has logged 300 orders, mostly from the VIP/corporate and EMS/SAR segments.

The European commercial market accounts for a large portion of Agusta’s sales of light twins. “Leading operators with large fleets have relevant and diversified businesses across Europe for offshore transport, passenger transport, EMS/SAR and fire fighting,” said Dalmasso. “If including Russia, this is one of the most promising markets for a number of commercial roles.” He added that Russia needs to modernize its aging fleets.

The helicopter marker is bullish about the future. Last summer it launched the new AW169, which will feature advancements in avionics, and airframe design. The light twin is designed to cater to the growing market for multi-role capability in the 4.5-ton class segment. The company forecasts a potential market for almost 1,000 of the type over approximately 20 years.

Agusta is displaying a VIP configured GrandNew light twin on the static display at EBACE, as well as models from its product range on its stand.