Russian Helicopters chooses PWC to supply engines for the VRT500


Russian Helicopters has selected Pratt & Whitney Canada to supply the engines for its upcoming VRT500 light-single helicopter.

The Russian Helicopters’ subsidiary, VR-Technologies, is developing the aircraft and, with the PW207V engine, expects the aircraft to be capable of speeds up to 250kmph, to have a maximum range of up to 860km and to carry a payload of 730kg.

Anthony Rossi, vice president, business development and commercial services, Pratt & Whitney said: “The PW200 engine family is a highly successful program that has come to power several of the light, twin-engine helicopters around the world,”

“Having flown more than 12 million hours, it has earned a reputation for exceptional reliability, with mission availability rates that exceed industry benchmarks. We are pleased that Russian Helicopters has recognized the capabilities of the engine for its first single-engine application.”

This news follows on from the UAE defence firm Tawazun acquiring a 50% stake in VR Technologies. The announcement was made at the Dubai Air Show. As part of the deal, both VR Technologies and Tawazun are considering opening an assembly line for the VRT-500 helicopter in the UAE – according to Reuters.

Tawazun will use its defence security and development fund to finance the acquisition. The transaction will be finalised in the first quarter of 2020.

Branching out

It has been apparent over the last few years that Russian Helicopters is branching out. With the development of the Kamov Ka-62 and the VRT500, we have seen the state-owned manufacturer move to making civil helicopters for international markets.

As well selling its aircraft overseas, Russian Helicopters is also planning to establish a final assembly plant for the VRT500 in Italy, according to Alexander Okhonko, general manager at VR-Technologies at the Dubai Airshow. This is expected to help boost the aircraft’s presence in western Europe.