Airbus Helicopters said it maintained its 52 percent share of the civil and parapublic helicopter market in 2022 with 374 orders and 344 deliveries. Customer fleet hours, meanwhile, returned to pre-pandemic 2019 levels.
Demand for the company’s turbine singles and light twins again led the way, collectively accounting for 342 orders, while demand for Airbus’s super-medium and intermediate helicopters, the H175 and H160, remained weak, with just eight and 12 orders, respectively. The company will not post 2022 financial results until February 16, when all of Airbus will report.
“Our orders came from 203 customers in 48 countries, underlining the importance of our global network, as well as showing that in uncertain times, the role of helicopters is more essential than ever,” said Airbus Helicopters CEO Bruno Even. He said 2022 “was a year in which Airbus Helicopters solidified its recovery, in a context of instability with the war in Ukraine and a fragile supply chain.”
Highlights for the year included the deliveries of the first H160s in Brazil, Japan, and for the French Navy; an order for 27 H125 singles from Brazil’s armed forces; a major upgrade for the fleet of Tigers in the French and Spanish armies; initial deliveries of H135s to the Spanish Ministry of Interior; large service contracts for French and German NH90s, the U.S. Army’s fleet of nearly 500 UH-72A and UH-72B helicopters, and the Helicopter Company’s (Saudi Arabia) fleet of 20 H145s and six ACH160s; and continued progress on unmanned systems including the VSR700. Airbus also continues to pursue a contract for a large order of H175Ms as part of the UK’s New Medium Helicopter program. In June, Airbus was named coordinator of the EU Next Generation Rotorcraft Technologies Project (ENGRT), a European Defense Fund initiative that is a precursor for the next generation of European military rotorcraft.
Even said Airbus is pursuing a three-pronged campaign for decarbonization that includes SAF, hybridization, and electrification. ”The unveiling of our DisruptiveLab demonstrator at the Airbus Summit is another significant step to decarbonizing vertical lift. The aircraft that took flight on January 13 will demonstrate our capability to reduce CO2 emissions by 50 percent. Our commitment to sustainability also saw us forge more partnerships that will support the optimal entry into service of the CityAirbus NextGen, our eVTOL prototype.”