Leonardo has signed a contract with Italy’s Guardia di Finanza for 22 new-generation AW169 medium twin-engine helicopters.

The contract, valued at  €280 million ($315 million), includes a comprehensive support and training package which could be further extended with optional services valued at an additional €100 million. Deliveries are expected to start in summer 2019 and to be completed by 2024.

The aircraft will be used for a range of roles including patrol and reconnaissance, law enforcement, rescue and homeland security.

Alessandro Profumo, Leonardo CEO, said: “This contract will allow us to deliver the Guardia di Finanza a new-generation helicopter with the best technologies available, to perform missions which are getting more and more complex and challenging. Our ability to provide state-of-the-art  products to meet the requirements of Italian government agencies and armed forces, for the security of our nation, is the result of Leonardo’s leading-edge technology and innovation.”

The AW169s will complement a fleet of 14  AW139s – six of which are already in service, with the following eight due to be delivered in 2019.

The Guardia di Finanza’s AW169s will receive a military qualification from the Italian Directorate of Air Armaments (ARMAEREO). The fleet will be configured with features such as a rescue hoist, emergency floatation system and life rafts, a traffic collision avoidance system and a cockpit that is compatible with night vision goggles.

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