Era Group becomes launch customer for Leonardo AW609 Era Group. Photo courtesy of Leonardo
The Leonardo AW609 is on track for certification by 2019 and Era Group will be its launch customer. The original equipment manufacturer (OEM) told reporters Monday that the operator has ordered two 609s for a 2020 entry into service.
The aircraft will have a dedicated training package and will include a nine-passenger utility configuration for offshore, utility, VIP, emergency medical services, and search and rescue missions in the U.S.
The 609 has accumulated 1,400 flight hours in its test program so far. Leonardo said AC1 is preparing for load level survey in Italy, AC3 is equipped with new engines and AC4 is currently under construction at its Philadelphia facility.
Initial deliveries for the 609 will take place in Philadelphia. Leonardo said it has received interest from operators for 50 609s.