Bell 412

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Bell 412
LAFD Bell 412 (cropped).jpg
Bell 412EP of the Los Angeles City Fire Department
Role Multipurpose utility helicopter
National origin United States/Canada
Manufacturer Bell Helicopter
First flight August 1979
Introduction 1981
Status In service
Primary users Royal Air Force
See Operators for others
Produced 1979–present
Number built Over 869
Developed from Bell 212
Variants Bell CH-146 Griffon

The Bell 412 is a twin-engine utility helicopter of the Huey family manufactured by Bell Helicopter. It is a development of the Bell 212, with the major difference being the composite four-blade main rotor.

Design and development[edit]

Development began in the late 1970s with two Bell 212s being converted into 412 prototypes. An advanced four-blade main rotor with a smaller diameter replaced the 212's two-blade rotor. A Bell 412 prototype first flew in August 1979. The initial model was certified in January 1981 with deliveries commencing in the same month.[1]

The 412 model was followed by the 412SP (Special Performance) version featuring larger fuel capacity, higher takeoff weight and optional seating arrangements. In 1991, the 412HP (High Performance) variant with improved transmission replaced the SP version in production.[1] The current production version, 412EP (Enhanced Performance), is equipped with a dual digital automatic flight control system. In 2013 Bell introduced the 412EPI which includes an electronic engine control (FADEC) for a PT6T-9 engine upgrade, and a glass cockpit display system similar to the Bell model 429. Also featured is a Garmin touchscreen navigation system, and the BLR Strake and Fast Fin upgrades for improved hover performance.[2] Over 700 Model 412s (including 260 by AgustaWestland) have been built.[3]


Bell 412
Standard Model with P&WC PT6T-3B
Bell 412SP
Special Performance version with P&WC PT6T-3BF engines
Bell 412HP
High performance version with P&WC PT6T-3BG or -3D engines
Bell 412EP
Enhanced performance version with P&WC PT6T-3DF engines
Bell 412EPI
Glass cockpit version with P&WC PT6T-9 electronic controlled engines
Bell 412CF (CH-146 Griffon)
100 custom-built utility transport helicopters for the Canadian Forces, based on 412EP and designated by Bell as 412CF
Bell Griffin HT1
Advanced training helicopter based on the Bell 412EP, operated by the Royal Air Force (RAF) since 1997 as an advanced flying trainer. Operated by the Defence Helicopter Flying School at RAF Shawbury and the Search and Rescue Training Unit at RAF Valley.
Bell Griffin HAR2
Search and Rescue helicopter based on the Bell 412EP, operated by No. 84 Squadron RAF since 2003 at RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus.
Agusta-Bell AB 412
Civil utility transport version, built under license in Italy by Agusta.[4]
Agusta-Bell AB 412EP
Italian-built version of the Bell 412EP.[4]
Agusta-Bell AB 412 Grifone
Military utility transport version, built under licence in Italy by Agusta.[4]
UH-X prototype
Agusta-Bell AB 412 CRESO
Italian-built version, fitted with a ground surveillance radar.
NBell 412
Indonesian IPTN's licensed product of Bell 412[4]
Subaru-Bell XUH-2 (formerly UH-X)[5]
Modified version of the Bell 412 EPI; 150 on order to meet the JGSDF's requirement for a UH-1J replacement.[6][7][8]
Subaru-Bell 412EPX
Commercial version of UH-X.[9]


The Bell 412 is used by private and commercial operators. It is particularly popular in the oil industries, military, and for law enforcement use.

Military operators[edit]

Chilean Air Force Bell 412
 Dominican Republic
 El Salvador
An Agusta-Bell AB-412 of the Italian Army
A Slovenian Air Force Bell 412
 Saudi Arabia
 South Korea
 Sri Lanka
A Royal Thai Air Force Bell 412
 United Arab Emirates
A Bell 412EP Griffin HT1 of the Royal Air Force Defence Helicopter Flying School hover taxis to the runway at RIAT 2010
 United Kingdom

Governmental operators[edit]

 Czech Republic
A Finnish Frontier Guard Agusta Bell AB-412
 South Korea
An LA County Fire Dept. 412 sits atop a helipad in the mountains in the Angeles National Forest.
 United States

Incidents and accidents[edit]

On April 4, 1991, a Bell 412 collided with a small plane carrying United States Senator H. John Heinz III, which killed the senator.

On 09 July 2002, a Bell 412 from the El Salvador Air Force crashed after a lightning strike killing all 4 crew members and 3 passengers on board.

On December 10, 2006, a Bell 412 medical helicopter Mercy Air 2 crashed in mountainous terrain near Hesperia, California. All three crew members on board died.

Specifications (412EP)[edit]

Bell 412 Line Drawing.svg
Rotor head and transmission of a Bell 412

Data from International Directory of Civil Aircraft,[48] Bell 412EP Product Specifications[49]

General characteristics


See also[edit]

Related development

Related lists



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  • Hoyle, Craig. "World Air Forces Directory". Flight International, Vol. 180, No. 5321, 13–19 December 2011. pp. 26–52.

External links[edit]