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Airbus Helicopters

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Airbus Helicopters SAS
Company typeOperating Division
Founded1992; 32 years ago (1992)
Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm Edit this on Wikidata
HeadquartersMarseille Provence Airport
Marignane, France
Key people
Bruno Even (CEO)[1]
RevenueIncrease 6.5 billion (2021)[2]
Increase 535 million (2021)[2]
Number of employees
20,126 (2021)[2]

Airbus Helicopters SAS (formerly Eurocopter Group) is the helicopter manufacturing division of Airbus. It is the largest in the industry in terms of revenues and turbine helicopter deliveries. Its head office is located at Marseille Provence Airport in Marignane, France, near Marseille.[3] The main facilities of Airbus Helicopters are at its headquarters in Marignane, France, and in Donauwörth, Germany, with additional production plants in Canada, Brazil (Helibras), Australia, Spain, Romania, the United Kingdom and the United States. The company, originally named Eurocopter, was rebranded Airbus Helicopters on 2 January 2014.[4]


Airbus Helicopters was formed in 1992 as Eurocopter Group, through the merger of the helicopter divisions of Aérospatiale and DASA. The company's heritage traces back to Blériot and Lioré et Olivier in France and to Messerschmitt and Focke-Wulf in Germany.[5]

Airbus Helicopters and its predecessor companies have established a wide range of helicopter firsts, including the first production turboshaft-powered helicopter (the Aérospatiale Alouette II of 1955); the introduction of the Fenestron shrouded tail rotor (on the Gazelle of 1968); the first helicopter certified for full flight in icing conditions (the AS332 Super Puma, in 1984); the first production helicopter with a Fly-by-wire control system (the NHIndustries NH90, first flown in full FBW mode in 2003); the first helicopter to use a Fly-by-light primary control system (an EC135 testbed, first flown in 2003); and the first ever landing of a helicopter on Mount Everest (achieved by an AS350 B3 in 2005).[6][7][8]

As a consequence of the merger of Airbus Helicopters' former parents in 2000, the firm is now a wholly owned subsidiary of Airbus. The creation of what was then called EADS in 2000 also incorporated CASA of Spain, which itself had a history of helicopter-related activities dating back to Talleres Loring, including local assembly of the Bo105.

Today, Airbus Helicopters has four main plants in Europe (Marignane and La Courneuve in France, and Donauwörth and Kassel in Germany), plus 32 subsidiaries and participants around the world, including those in Fort Erie Canada, Brisbane, Australia, Albacete, Spain and Grand Prairie, USA.[9][10]

Since approximately 2006, Eurocopter has been involved in the planning for the proposed pan-European Future Transport Helicopter project.[11]

As of 2014, more than 12,000 Airbus Helicopters were in service with over 3,000 customers in around 150 countries.[12] Eurocopter became Airbus Helicopter at the start of 2014.[13]

Eurocopter sold 422 helicopters in 2013 and delivered 497 helicopters that year.[14] In 2014, AH built a concrete cylinder for testing helicopters before first flight.[15]

In December 2022, it was announced Airbus Helicopters has acquired the Kassel-Calden-headquartered gearbox and component supplier, ZF Luftfahrttechnik from ZF Friedrichshafen for an undisclosed amount. The business will be rebranded as Airbus Helicopters Technik.[16]

In May 2024, Airbus Helicopters signed a MoU with Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) to finance civil helicopter purchases in India.[17][18]

Dec 1970 Jan 1992 July 2000 Sep 2000 Jan 2001 Dec 2006 Apr 2009 Sep 2010 Jan 2014 May 2015 Jan 2017 Apr 2017
    European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company NV Airbus Group NV Airbus Group SE Airbus SE   
Airbus Industrie GIE Airbus SAS     
  Airbus Military SAS Airbus Defence and Space SAS   
    EADS Defence and Security Cassidian SAS
    Astrium SAS EADS Astrium SAS
  Eurocopter SA Eurocopter SAS Airbus Helicopters SAS   

Historical emblems[edit]

Historical emblems of the company:


Some of the helicopters were renamed in 2015, resembling Airbus airplane naming.[20] When the division changed its name from Eurocopter Group to Airbus Helicopters in 2014 the trade names of the products were changed (applied by 1 January 2016) to reflect this. Suffixes, as well as the differentiation for single or twin engines, were no longer to be used. Military versions were to be symbolized by the letter M. The only exceptions to this new branding were the AS365, the AS565, the Tiger and the NH90, which will keep their current names.[21]

Name Type Thumbnail Introduced MTOW
t (lb)
H125 Light single-engine 1975 2.25 (5,000)
H130 Light single-engine 2001 2.5 (5,500)
H135 Light twin-engine 1996 2.98 (6,600)
H145 Light twin-engine 2002 3.7 (8,200)
H155 Medium twin-engine 1999 4.92 (10,800)
H160 Medium twin-engine 2019 6.05 (13,300)
H175 Super medium twin-engine 2014 7.8 (17,000)
H215 Heavy twin-engine 1980 9.15 (20,200)
H225 Heavy twin-engine 2004 11.2 (25,000)
NH90[a] Military utility twin-engine 2006 10.6 (23,000)
Tiger Military attack twin-engine 2003 6.6 (15,000)


  • rotorcraft – hybrid helicopter with two forward propellers, which achieved a 255-knot speed milestone in level flight in June 2011.[22]
  • Airbus Helicopters X6 – Two year concept study into the possible launch of an 11.5t helicopter to replace the H225.[23][24]
  • Airbus RACER, experimental high-speed compound helicopter developed from the X³, targeting a 2020 first flight.
  • Airbus CityAirbus, electrically powered VTOL aircraft demonstrator, intended for an air taxi role.

See also[edit]

Comparable major helicopter manufacturers:


  1. ^ "Bruno Even Appointed CEO of Airbus Helicopters". airbus.com (Press release). 14 February 2018.
  2. ^ a b c "2021 Financial Statements" (PDF). Airbus IR. pp. 25, 46. Archived from the original (PDF) on 18 April 2022. Retrieved 29 July 2022.
  3. ^ "Legal Notice and Disclaimer Archived 12 January 2014 at the Wayback Machine." Airbus Helicopters. Retrieved on 24 January 2014. "[...]whose registered Office is located Aéroport International Marseille-Provence – 13725 Marignane Cedex – France"
  4. ^ Sheppard, Ian (1 August 2013). "Eurocopter To Be Renamed Airbus Helicopter". AINonline. AIN Publications. Retrieved 19 September 2019.
  5. ^ "Airbus Helicopters history". Archived from the original on 14 January 2014.
  6. ^ "Landing on Air". National Geographic Adventure. 1 September 2005. Archived from the original on 2 August 2009. Retrieved 24 June 2009.
  7. ^ "Everest 2005: The Helicopter land on Everest with video: But it is good?". wayback.archive-it.org. Archived from the original on 24 February 2012. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  8. ^ "French Everest Mystery Chopper's Utopia summit". MountEverest.net. 27 May 2005. Archived from the original on 13 January 2015.
  9. ^ "Airbus Helicopters – Spain". Archived from the original on 16 January 2014.
  10. ^ "Airbus Helicopters – Interactive Network Map". Archived from the original on 15 January 2014.
  11. ^ "Rüstung: EU beschließt Bau von Helikopter" (in German). Archived from the original on 16 April 2022. Retrieved 23 January 2018.
  12. ^ "Airbus Helicopters – Who We are". Archived from the original on 14 January 2014.
  13. ^ "Airbus Helicopters takes off (2012-2017)". Airbus. Retrieved 19 April 2024.
  14. ^ "Airbus Helicopters aims high with new branding and a strategic transformation". Archived from the original on 3 February 2014.
  15. ^ "New dynamic testing method at Airbus brings helicopters to market quickly". Helihub. 24 July 2015. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  16. ^ Perry, Dominic (3 January 2023). "Airbus completes acquisition of gearbox supplier ZF Luftfahrttechnik". FlightGlobal. Retrieved 3 January 2023.
  17. ^ "SIDBI Takes Flight: Signs MoU with Airbus Helicopters to Finance Civil Aviation in India". Bru Times News.
  18. ^ "Airbus Helicopters and SIDBI sign an MoU for helicopter financing in India". The Times of India. 24 May 2024.
  19. ^ "Flying as one: Fully integrated Airbus takes off". Airbus. Retrieved 18 February 2019.
  20. ^ "Airbus renames fleet". Vertical Magazine. April 2015. p. 36. Archived from the original on 19 April 2015. Retrieved 11 April 2015.
  21. ^ "History is written with an HI160" (PDF). www.airbushelicopters.com. March 2015. Retrieved 5 May 2023.
  22. ^ "Eurocopter's X3 hybrid helicopter makes aviation history in achieving a speed milestone of 255 knots during level flight". Archived from the original on 27 May 2014.
  23. ^ "PARIS: Airbus Helicopters launches X6 concept phase". 16 June 2015.
  24. ^ "Airbus Helicopters launches X6 concept phase, setting the standard for the future in heavy-lift rotorcraft". www.airbushelicopters.com. 16 March 2015. Retrieved 8 July 2016.


  1. ^ via 62.5% share in NHIndustries joint venture

External links[edit]