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Leonardo and Metro Aviation sign North American distributor agreement for AW09 with 30-unit commitment

Leonardo Press Release | February 27, 2024

Estimated reading time 4 minutes, 4 seconds.

Leonardo and Metro Aviation, a prime privately-owned HEMS (helicopter emergency medical service) operator and service provider in the US, have announced the signing of a distributor agreement for the AW09 next generation single engine helicopter.

Metro will act as a Leonardo distributor for the type in the U.S. and Canada for all civil market applications. The Distributor Agreement includes a commitment for 30 units that will translate into preliminary sales contracts.

This latest deal builds on the collaboration started at Heli-Expo 2023 aimed at supporting the introduction and positioning of the AW09 in the USA and in doing so, benefitting from Metro Aviation’s renowned experience and capabilities in the development of Aircraft Interior & STCs (supplemental type certificates), service and training.

Gian Piero Cutillo, MD of Leonardo Helicopters, said: “We’re excited to perform this further step forward in our collaboration with Metro which paves the path to the introduction of our new single engine in the important North American market. Also, combining our industrial capabilities with Metro Aviation’s extensive and recognized experience in operations and support enhances the AW09 value proposition, providing superior mission capabilities to the operators of this platform.”

“I first saw the 09 prototype in 2017 and have been excited about bringing it to the U.S. market since then,” said Metro Aviation President and CEO Mike Stanberry. “Metro has enjoyed a great partnership with Leonardo and designed multiple interiors for the 09. We look forward to integrating it into our fleet and performing completions for air medical, law enforcement, tourism, and beyond.”

The AW09 continues to generate a very positive response from all geographies worldwide as the programme development progresses. Rotorcraft companies highly welcome the AW09 for its outstanding characteristics and multirole capabilities that represent a significant evolution compared to existing products in this category.

The AW09 perfectly complements Leonardo’s product range in the Long Light Single-segment, introducing an all-new design aircraft to sustain long-term competitive positioning in this weight category. A full-scale mock-up of the cabin, together with the advanced connectivity and digital features of the type, is on display at the Leonardo booth at Heli-Expo, attracting lots of interest within the rotorcraft community thanks to its distinguished features in cabin space and ergonomics, and external footprint.

The total number of preliminary sales contracts for the AW09 will soon exceed 100 units globally.

Metro Aviation is the world’s largest air medical completion center and traditional air medical operator, with more than 170 helicopters and airplanes in 27 states and the District of Columbia. Metro’s presence is evident for many air medical, law enforcement and other components and installations. Metro has developed and received FAA STCs for many air medical components and installations including fixed- and rotor-wing.

Quite often, Metro not only performs the installation, but purchases the aircraft and trains the ground and flight personnel. Its foundation of safety, quality and customer service has remained for 40 years and is still the cornerstone of the company.

This press release was prepared and distributed by Leonardo.

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