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Agusta A109

The AgustaWestland AW109, previously known as the Agusta A109, is a versatile helicopter with a lightweight design, twin engines, and the capacity to seat eight individuals.

It was originally created and manufactured by the Italian rotorcraft manufacturer Agusta, making it the first all-Italian helicopter to be produced on a large scale.

The production of this helicopter has been carried on by Agusta’s successor companies, currently known as Leonardo S.p.A. (previously AgustaWestland, which merged into the new Finmeccanica in 2016).

The development of the A109 began in the late 1960s with the aim of creating a rotorcraft suitable for commercial operations within Italy.

In response to market demand, a twin-engine configuration was chosen, and the focus was primarily on the civil model rather than the military-oriented A109B project.

The first of three prototypes took its inaugural flight on 4 August 1971.

After receiving certification from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on June 1, 1975, the type was authorised for service entry in 1976.

The A109 has been utilised in a wide range of capacities, including light utility, VIP transport, aeromedical, law enforcement, search and rescue (SAR), and various military roles.

Both land- and sea-dedicated military models have been manufactured.

Numerous models with different engines, expanded fuselages, and alternative equipment configurations have been produced.

Certain AW109s possess a convertible interior, allowing for quick adaptation between roles.

Additionally, various third-party companies offer adaptations and services for this type.

After the merger of Agusta and the British company Westland Helicopters to create AgustaWestland, the A109 was rebranded as the AW109.

The program has seen international involvement, with final assembly lines established in Italy and the US.

PZL-Świdnik has been manufacturing hundreds of AW109 fuselages since the mid-1990s.

In 2004, AgustaWestland formed a joint venture with Changhe Aircraft Industries Corporation in China to produce and support the AW109.

The AW109 has been in production for 40 years.

The AgustaWestland AW119 is a variant of the AW109, distinguished by its single engine and fixed undercarriage.



The first production model, powered by two Allison Model 250-C20 turboshaft engines.

It made its first flight on 4 August 1971.


Military version for the Italian Army.

A109A Mk.II

Upgraded civilian version of the A109A.


Aeromedical evacuation version based on A109A Mk.II with extra wide cabin and access doors hinged top and bottom, rather than to one side.


Unbuilt military version.


Version created for the Belgian Army.

Based on the A109C but fitted with fixed landing gear, sliding doors and a tail rotor guard in place of a lower tail fin.


Eight-seat civil version, powered by two Allison Model 250-C20R-1 turboshaft engines.


Aeromedical evacuation version based on A109C with extra-wide cabin and access doors hinged top and bottom, rather than to one side.


One prototype only

A109E Power

Upgraded civilian version, initially powered by two Turbomeca Arrius 2K1 engines.

Later the manufacturer introduced an option for two Pratt & Whitney PW206C engines to be used – both versions remain known as the A109E.

Marketed as the AW109E and Power.

A109E Power Elite

A stretched cabin version of A109E Power.

It features a glass cockpit with two complete sets of pilot instruments and navigation systems, including a three-axis autopilot, an auto-coupled Instrument Landing system, and GPS.


Military LUH “Light Utility Helicopter” variant based on the A109E Power.

Operators include South African Air Force, Swedish Air Force, Royal New Zealand Air Force, and the Nigerian Air Force, as well as Algeria and Malaysia.

Known as the Hkp15A (utility variant) and 15B (ship-borne search and rescue variant) with the Swedish Air Force.


Eight A109E Power aircraft were used by the United States Coast Guard Helicopter Interdiction Tactical Squadron Jacksonville (HITRON Jacksonville) as short-range armed interdiction helicopters from 2000 until 2008, when they were replaced with MH-65C Dolphins.

Agusta designated these armed interdiction aircraft as “Mako” until the U.S. Coast Guard officially named it the MH-68A Stingray in 2003.


Military version.


High-altitude and high-temperature operations with fixed wheels rather than the retractable wheels of most A109 variants.

Typically used by police, search and rescue, and air ambulance operators.


Military version.

A109 km

Military version for high altitude and high temperature operations.


Naval version.


Standard military version.


Version for Guardia di Finanza, the Italian Finance Guard.

A109S Grand

Marketed as the AW109 Grand, it is a lengthened cabin-upgraded civilian version with two Pratt & Whitney Canada PW207 engines and lengthened main rotor blades with different tip design from the Power version.


AW109 GrandNew

single pilot IFR, TAWS and EVS, especially for EMS.

AW109 Trekker

A variant of the AW109S Grand with fixed landing skids.


Chinese model of the AW109E for China mainland market by Jiangxi Changhe Agusta Helicopter Co., Ltd., a Leonardo Helicopter Division (formerly AgustaWestland) and Changhe Aviation Industries Joint Venture Company established in 2005.


AW109 Power with PW206C


1 or 2


6 or 7 passengers


11.448 m (37 ft 7 in) fuselage


3.50 m (11 ft 6 in)

Empty weight

1,590 kg (3,505 lb)

Max take-off weight

2,850 kg (6,283 lb)


2 × Pratt & Whitney Canada PW206C Turboshaft engine,

418 kW (560 hp) each

Main rotor diameter

11.00 m (36 ft 1 in)


Maximum speed

311 km/h (193 mph, 168 kn)

Cruise speed

285 km/h (177 mph, 154 kn)

Never exceed speed

311 km/h (193 mph, 168 kn)

Ferry range

932 km (579 mi, 503 nmi)

Rate of climb

9.8 m/s (1,930 ft/min).


Agusta – AW109 GrandNew

AW109 Trekker M – Military Helicopters | Leonardo – Helicopters


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