The design was based on and fit to replace the Ka-27 with a pointed streamlined nose. Reportedly powered by two 1,838kW (2,465 shp) Klimov TVA-3000 turboshaft engines, driving a coaxial rotor system. The civil variant could carry a 7,000kg (15,432 lb) underslung load, while the military naval variant can include an array of ASW weapons and electronics. Armament is expected to include APR-3 water-jet-propelled torpedoes and KAB-250PL guided depth charges.
Although the Ka-40 was proposed for several civil and military roles, development was suspended in 1998.