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On 14 December Airbus Helicopters announced that the Hungarian Ministry of Defence (MoD) has ordered 16 H225M multi-role helicopters as part of its Zrinyi 2026 modernisation programme for the armed forces. The helicopters will be equipped with the HForce weapons management system. Airbus will also provide an extensive training and support package to ensure the highest level of operational availability. The new aircraft will operate alongside the 20 H145Ms recently ordered by the MoD.

“This new contract confirms the H225M as a combat-proven, multi-role platform operated by the most demanding military customers worldwide. The Hungarian armed forces will be able to rely on the cost-efficient H145M/H225M tandem that will enable them to cover all of the major military missions, from light utility, tactical transport, combat search and rescue up to light attack,” commented Airbus Helicopters CEO, Bruno Even.

The H225Ms selected by Hungary will be equipped with state-of-the-art communications capabilities and will be used for transport, combat search and rescue and special operations missions. Its state-of-the art avionics and four-axis autopilot, exceptional range and payload capacities, combined with a large cabin designed to carry up to 28 troops and powerful air-to-surface armament as well as electronic warfare systems allow the H225M to carry out the most demanding missions. The helicopter has an all-weather capability supported by its night vision goggle compatibility.

With this contract, Hungary becomes the ninth country to have selected the H225M. A member of the multi-role SUPER PUMA family of helicopters, this military variant is currently operational in France, Brazil, Mexico, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand, and has recently been ordered by Kuwait and Singapore.

At the same time, and also under the aegis of the Zrinyi 2026 project, the Hungarian government and Airbus have inked a Memorandum of Agreement that creates industrial cooperation between the entities for long-term aviation projects, focussing initially on production of high-precision mechanical parts for helicopter dynamic systems.

The agreement intends to create a sustainable and integrated plant within Airbus. The green field production unit will start by manufacturing mechanical parts that will then be delivered to the major component assembly centre for dynamic parts to be fitted on to various helicopters of the Airbus range. The agreement will also rely on a local supply chain being qualified to perform certain tasks such as surface treatment.

This partnership is in line with our European cooperation strategy at Airbus and a demonstration of our commitment to accelerate our collaboration with one of Europe’s fastest growing economies [….] This project has been made possible thanks to Hungary’s industrial expertise and commitment to innovation, which will now thrive in Airbus´ global supply chain,” Mr Even added.

A total of 88 H225Ms have been delivered so far, following the first delivery to the French Air Force in 2006 and the fleet has recently passed the 100,000 flight-hour milestone.

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