Airbus Helicopters has announced the introduction of the AH-125 and MH-125 Ares helicopters to its range of military helicopters. These combat-capable aircraft are the first U.S.-built H125 military configurations and will feature militarized options suitable for the needs of military and parapublic allies and partners worldwide.
The AH-125 Ares will be the armed variant of the helicopter, while the MH-125 Ares will be a multi-role helicopter capable of various operations. With the new addition of a flexible weapons capability, the H125 helicopter can be easily re-configured between multiple mission sets in less than 30 minutes, ranging from light attack, air assault, search and rescue, casualty evacuation, and disaster response, among other combat and parapublic operations.
Scott Tumpak, Vice President of Military Line of Business for Airbus U.S. Space and Defense, said, “The AH-125 and MH-125 Ares helicopters will offer the capability, reliability and flexibility needed by America’s allies and partners as they perform an array of rotary wing missions. They represent the latest evolution of Airbus’ H125 family of helicopters and will be produced in the U.S. at Airbus Helicopters, Inc.’s facility in Columbus, Mississippi.”
Globally, the H125 family of helicopters is the world’s top-selling helicopter, with almost 80% of the single-engine market and a wide range of certified modifications. MAG Aerospace will perform the weapons installation design, engineering, certification, and manufacturing, allowing for a wide range of weapons to be installed, including a .50 cal (12.7 mm) gun and unguided rockets, with precision-guided weapons as a growth option. The installation allows for doors-on flight throughout the mission.
Matt Bartlett, President of MAG Aerospace, said, “MAG Aerospace is thrilled to team with Airbus to combine our unique platform engineering and modification capabilities with the world-class leader in the single-engine helicopter market. It’s an honor to work with Airbus and expand our ability to serve our partners in the U.S. and around the world.”
The H125 has a long history of use by U.S. law enforcement and government agencies and is currently the light enforcement helicopter used by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection. The U.S. government is the single largest customer and operator of the aircraft, with over 100 H125 family aircraft in service.
Airbus provides a range of reliable and versatile helicopters to the U.S. government and military, enabling them to perform a wide variety of missions. Airbus has delivered over 480 UH-72A and UH-72B Lakota helicopters to the U.S. Army and National Guard since the program began in 2006 and continues to support the U.S. Coast Guard’s fleet of almost 100 MH-65 helicopters.
Overall, the introduction of the AH-125 and MH-125 Ares helicopters to the Airbus range of military helicopters adds to the extensive line of military helicopters already produced by Airbus, including the H125M. These new offerings provide a flexible and reliable solution for rotary wing missions for America’s allies and partners worldwide.