Boeing has delivered four MH-139A Grey Wolf test aircraft to the U.S. Air Force as the service prepares to replace its aging fleet of UH-1N helicopters.
The Grey Wolf is a multi-mission aircraft – based on the proven commercial AW139 helicopter – designed to protect intercontinental ballistic missiles and transport U.S. government officials and security forces. Boeing was awarded a $2.4 billion contract in Sept. 2018 for 80 helicopters, training systems and associated support equipment.
“The Grey Wolf is a modern, versatile aircraft offering greater range, speed and endurance than the UH-1N Huey it replaces,” said Mark Cherry, vice president and general manager of Boeing Vertical Lift. “I am proud of our team who, along with our partner Leonardo, helped us to achieve this milestone – a tremendous first step in a long line of Grey Wolf deliveries.”
The delivery milestone follows receipt of the Federal Aviation Administration-issued supplemental type certificate, required to commence deliveries. With aircraft in hand, the Air Force will now proceed with Military Utility Testing as the program progresses toward Milestone C.
“We are thrilled that the first four MH-139As have been accepted by the U.S. Air Force,” said Clyde Woltman, chief executive officer, Leonardo Helicopters U.S. “This aircraft is well-positioned to become an important asset in the defense and security of the United States.”
Leonardo produces the helicopter at its plant in northeast Philadelphia, while Boeing is responsible for military equipment procurement ad installation, and post-delivery support of the aircraft.