how much does a military helicopter cost

How Much Does A Military Helicopter Cost? Read through for military helicopter for sale. You will also find how much does a helicopter cost in the post.

Helicopters are known for being a lot more expensive than private jets are. However, some helicopters are cheaper than others. So which are the cheapest helicopters on the market? I’m not here to say whether you should own your own helicopter, flight shaming will always be a thing. However, if you have the money, these are the helicopters you could buy! Recent years have seen the invention of kit helicopters, many of which cost less than $20,000. However, for the purposes of this article, I am only going to focus on production helicopters- ie. non-kit helicopters.

military helicopter for sale

How Much Does A Military Helicopter Cost

15. Eurocopter AS350 Écureuil ($2.4 Million)

The AS350, previously known as the H125, is the most “expensive” helicopter in this article. Despite this, compared to most other helicopters, the AS350 is still one of the cheapest helicopters!

Originally, the AS350/H125 was designed for military and police operators exclusively, mostly in search and rescue, VIP transport and trainer roles. For the most part, being VIP transport.

However, many civilian organizations have seen this. Many flight schools have bought them as trainers, and many small companies have bought them as VIP transport for a small group (max. six people) of executives.

Despite this, Airbus designed the AS350 to travel at 245 km/h (152 mph, 132 kn) (making it one of the fastest helicopters out there!) at a range of 662 km (411 mi, 357 nmi) all for only $2.4 million!

14. Eurocopter EC120 ($1.4 million)

Aside from the AS350/H125, Eurocopter isn’t really well known for producing cheap helicopters. Despite this, EC120 Colibri is actually one of the cheaper helicopters available!

In the late 1980’s, Aérospatiale found that its Gazelle and Lama helicopter families were ageing with no replacement in sight. As such, they launched the P120, an all-new five-seat utility helicopter.

By the 1990’s, Aérospatiale had been folded into Airbus, creating Eurocopter (now Airbus Helicopters). In order to get off on the right foot, the P120 was rebranded as the EC120 and was launched.

The EC120 would have a longer range, at 727 km (452 mi, 393 nmi), whilst traveling at 191 km/h (119 mph; 103 kn). In order to sell more EC120s, Eurocopter gave the EC120 a price tag of $1.4 million!

13. AgustaWestland AW009 ($1.3 million)

Originally, the AW009 entered service as the PZL SW-4 with the Polish Air Force. However, in 2016, following AgustaWestland’s takeover of PZL, the SW-4 was rebranded as the AW009 for the commercial market.

Just like the SW-4 has become quite successful as a military helicopter, the upgraded AW009 has been a very successful commercial helicopter. For the few news crews who still use helicopters, many of them use the AW009.

This is in part due to the AW009 being one of the cheapest helicopters on the market. It costs roughly $1.3 million to acquire and roughly $200 per hour to operate, making it ideal for flight schools as well as news crews!

On top of all this, the AW009 can carry four people over a range of 790 km (490 mi, 430 nmi), at a speed of 260 km/h (160 mph, 140 kn). This has seen it become a favorite of smaller scale businesses as VIP transport.

12. MD 500E ($1.1 million)

Photo courtesy of Denmen Aviation Photography via Flickr.

McDonnell Douglas aren’t well known for their helicopters, instead being more well known for their airliners (like the DC-10 and MD-11). However, they have produced the MD 500, among the world’s cheapest helicopters.

Originally, the MD 500 was developed by Hughes Aircraft Company as a light reconnaissance helicopter. The MD 500 was successful in this endeavor as it was much more reliable and cheaper than its competitors.

However, McDonnell Douglas seemingly offered it too low, with the helicopter not making them a profit, and cost overruns happening several time. This caused the US Army to reduce its order.

Instead, many news companies and police agencies bought the MD 500 as it had a high speed, high service ceiling and good range. Another reason they bough it was due to the fact it cost $1.1 million and carries 5 people and a pilot.

11. Bell 505 Jet Range X ($1.07 million)

Assuming I had the money and the license to operate any of the helicopters in the article, I would choose the Bell 505. Not only because it is one of the cheapest helicopters on the planet, but because of its specs too.

In the early 2010’s, Bell found that many of its light helicopters were ageing with no replacement in sight. Instead of developing several new light helicopters to replace them several different helicopters, Bell designed one.

Depending on what you want to use the helicopter for, you can customize it accordingly at the factory. In order to fill these roles, Bell designed it to fly at 144 mph (232 km/h, 125 kn) at a range of 383 mi (617 km, 333 nmi).

On top of this, the Bell 505 is among the world’s heaviest helicopters, able to transport 4,475 lb (2,030 kg) of cargo, or four people! In order to generate more sales, Bell only charges $1.07 million for the Bell 505!

10. Robinson R66 ($935,900)

Robinson Helicopter Company is well known for producing some of the world’s cheapest helicopters. The R66 is no different. As with other Robinson helicopters, the R66 is similarly a utility and trainer helicopter.

Following the success of both the R22 and R44, Robinson decided to once again release a new helicopter. This helicopter, marketed as the R66 is a development based on the R44.

Unlike the R22 and R44, the R66 is turbine-powered, rather than piston-powered. The R66 has a longer fuselage than the R44, allowing it to carry four passengers or 1,200 lb (540 kg) of cargo.

The R66 also has a lengthened range and travels faster, being able to travel at 110 kn (130 mph, 200 km/h) at a range of 350 nmi (400 mi, 650 km). All for only $935,900!

9. Bell 206 ($900,000)

Originally, the Bell 206 was designed to be a light reconnaissance helicopter for the US Army. However, the US Army wasn’t interested in the helicopter, instead choosing another Bell design.

However, several new companies had seen the 206’s specs and were interested, but didn’t like the body’s look. Bell soon redesigned the airframe’s shell to be more appealing and launched it as the Bell 206.

Due to its previous military purpose, the 206 was one of the fastest helicopters of its day, as well as having one of the longest ranges. To sweeten the deal, Bell also gave the 206 a low price tag of $900,000!

Unlike many other helicopters adopted by news crews, the Bell 206 can carry up to four passengers, with one pilot. It has also since become quite popular with police forces as pursuit helicopters and as VIP transport.

8. Sikorsky Schweizer S333 ($698,000)

It’s no surprise that Sikorsky, the company who invented the first helicopter, has also helped to make one of the cheapest helicopters in the world. All with a little help from Schweizer Aircraft Company.

Prior to 2008, Schweizer had been developing a new light helicopter to be used as a personal/trainer helicopter. In 2008, Sikorsky bought out Schweizer, rebranding the S333 as the Sikorsky S333.

Schweizer design the S333 to appeal as a general aviation helicopter for the everyday aviator, or as a trainer for flight schools. To do this, the S333 was designed to be relatively fast speed and have a medium-range.

In order to make the S333 more appealing, Schweizer, and later Sikorsky, gave the S333 a low price tag of only $698,000. Due to this price tag, it has become a favorite helicopter trainer for several militaries!

7. Robinson R44 ($505,900)

Robinson Helicopter Company didn’t just create the Robinson R66, they built the R44, who’s design served as the basis for the R66’s. Just as with the Robinson R66, the R44 is one of the cheapest helicopters in the world!

Following Robinson’s success with the R22 (more on that in a minute!), they decided to expand upon it. Here, they improved the engines and rotors, whilst also elongating the fuselage.

This allowed the R44 to have a crew of one, as well as transporting three passengers. This has made it a favorite of law enforcement agencies, as well as air forces, companies, flying clubs and general aviation helicopter pilots!

Robinson designed the R44 to travel at 110 kn (200 km/h; 130 mph) over a range of 300 nmi (560 km; 350 mi). IN order to make it even more appealing than the competition, Robinson gave the R44 a price tag of $505,900!

6. Enstrom TH180 ($400,000)

Enstrom Helicopters are well known for producing some of the world’s best and cheapest helicopters, mostly for trainer and/or general aviation use. The Entsrom TH180 is no different.

Following the success of the Enstrom F-28 and 280, Enstrom released a slight smaller, and faster version of the F-28. This helicopter is currently in development, however, orders are already piling in.

Due to this, Enstrom hasn’t released the TH180’s full specs, including speed and range. Although, they have said it will have a longer range and travel faster. It is likewise a two-seat helicopter.

Of the current known orders, the TH180 has become a favorite of flight schools as a trainer, mostly due to its low operating costs. Plus, it’s only $400,000 to buy!

5. Enstrom F-28 ($360,000)

Photo courtesy of MilborneOne via Wikimedia Commons.

Not only is the F-28 one of the cheapest helicopters in the world, but it is also one of the longest-produced aircraft too. For the most part, the F-28 serves as a general aviation helicopter, or as a helicopter trainer.

In the late 1950’s, helicopters became widespread throughout the US. With this, many people tried to design their own helicopters, including then-mining engineer Rudolph J. “Rudy” Enstrom.

Unlike his peers, he saw that there was a lack of basic helicopters at a cheap price. As such, he developed an incredibly basic helicopter to be used as a military helicopter trainer. Over time, it became a mainstay of general aviation.

This was in part due to the F-28’s price, which is an incredibly low $360,000. In 1975, the F-28’s airframe shell was redesigned to be more aerodynamic, it too shares the F-28’s cheap price.

4. Guimbal Cabri G2 ($350,000)

Eurocopter are known for producing some of the inventive helicopter designs the world has ever seen. In the late 1980’s, Mr. Guimbal, a former Eurocopter engineer went at it alone, producing one of the cheapest helicopters!

He designed the Guimbal G2 to be the perfect general aviation helicopter and/or trainer. To do this, he made the G2 among the smallest helicopters in the world.

Whilst doing this, he gave the G2 one of the most powerful piston engines that can fit in a helicopter of that size. He also made sure to make the G2 as light as possible, choosing lighter materials over cheaper, heavier ones.

This gives the G2 a cruise speed of 166 km/h (104 mph, 90 kn) and a range of 700 km (430 mi, 380 nmi). All of this, can be purchased from Hélicoptères Guimbal for only $350,000, being the closest rival to the…

3. Robinson R22 ($328,200)

The R22 serves as the basis for both the R44 and R66 also produced by Robinson Helicopter Company. Just as with the R44 and R66, the Robinson R22 is likewise one of the cheapest helicopters!

Before the mid-1970’s, there were almost no civilian-owned helicopters. With the TV becoming so popular, news crews around the world began demanding a low-cost helicopter they could use for filming.

One of the people to hear this was Frank Robinson. He decided to design a small helicopter with a high service ceiling, with the ability to carry two people and several different cameras in different positions.

However, many of his competitor’s helicopters were more expensive, with worse specs. In order to sell more, Robinson sold the R22, a better helicopter, at a lower price. Today that price is roughly $328,200.

2. HeliWhale Afalina ($120,000)

Since its introduction in 2016, many people have hailed the Afalina as the world’s cheapest helicopter. This is partly true- being one of the cheapest to purchase and the cheapest to operate.

For years, helicopter manufacturers have considered introducing an “affordable” helicopter, many of the aforementioned helicopters being an attempt at such. However, they have never really been available to the average person.

HeliWhale has decided to try to do this. In 2015, they released a mock-up of a two seat helicopter (one crew, one passenger) for under $120,000. Due to the price and specs, HeliWhale received several orders for the helicopter.

For $120,000, you get a helicopter that has a range of 750 km (470 mi, 400 nmi), whilst cruising at 200 km/h (120 mph, 110 kn)

1. Brantly B-2 ($100,000)

Whilst it may not look like much, the Brantly B-2 is the world’s cheapest helicopter. For the most part it is generally considered to be a complete failure, but it has excelled in at least one aspect: price.

In 1946, the US Army Air Corps wanted a new light reconnaissance helicopter. One of the independent designers was N O Brantly, a man who wanted to create his own helicopter empire!

However, the design was too complex to be used. So, Brantly decided to create a helicopter that appealed to the private aviation enthusiast, the result was the Brantly B-2.

Brantly built the entire helicopter on price, giving it lower specs than its competitors, although, sold it on price, at an incredibly low $100,000. Since it was entered into production in 1958, it has sold over 330 times.

how much does a helicopter cost

Top 10 Luxury Helicopters in the World

Most people have heard of personal and charter jets, but luxury helicopters are the genuine gems. Not only are these aircraft comparatively less expensive, but helicopters can approach places that bulky jets can’t. Having a private or commercial helicopter is expedient, more environment friendly, and a symbol of status. Celebrities including Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie and Donald Trump own a luxury helicopter, and this slot market has grown considerably in recent years due to demand from the rich.

They are well-appointed with all the newest technology, and interior seating marks that are designed in fine Italian leather upholstery.

Therefore the list of top 10 luxury helicopters is given below:

1. Augusta Westland AW119 Ke Koala:

luxury helicopters

The Koala is chiefly used by law enforcement, but it can easily provide accommodation to a group of corporate directors traveling on business. It has a VIP services quite adequately, with premium leather upholstery and seating for about 6 passengers and 2 operators. The Koala reaches a top speed of 166 mph (267 km/h) and a range of 618 miles (995 km). Price ranges from $1.8 to $3 million.

2. Eurocopter Hermès EC 135:

luxury helicopters

Though this brand of luxury helicopters is not suitable for long distant trips, is has a class apart built. The typical EC 135 will cost you a mere $4.2 million, but the one with the interior design from the best in class designer will cost you up to $6 million. The top speed is 178 mph, but the range is just 395 miles.

3. Augusta Westland AW109 Grand Versace VIP:

luxury helicopters

Augusta Westland teamed up with the Italian fashion house Versace to produce a super luxury interior for this fancier version of the AW109. The top speed is about 177 mph and a range of 599 miles. The mere difference is that all 599 of those miles will be more luxurious for the VIP passengers. Hence, will cost you $6.3 million price tag and the helicopter is fully covered in Versace leather, design and exterior.

4. Eurocopter Mercedes-Benz EC 145:

luxury helicopters

If you’re a Mercedes fan, now you can fly your preferred brand helicopter too. A regular EC 145 costs about $5.5 million, so the Mercedes version is going to cost anywhere around $7 million. But it’s totally worth it. No other Mercedes can go 153 mph while flying 17,000 feet above the ground. It has all the luxury of the famous German sports.

5. Eurocopter EC 175:

luxury helicopters

The EC 175 made its wonderful first appearance at the Paris Air Show in 2009. The chief feature of the EC 175 is that it can hold 16 passengers contentedly inside. The top speed reaches 178 mph (286 km/h), with a range of 345 miles (555 km). It costs whooping $7.9 million.

6. Eurocopter EC 155:

luxury helicopters

This is a luxurious chopper. Its top speed is an impressive 200 mph with a range of 533 miles. It can seat as many as 13 passengers; this spacious EC 155 aircraft will cost you $10 million.

7. Sikorsky S-76C:

luxury helicopters

The Sikorsky S-76C is more generally known as Black Hawk. The massive interior is large sufficient to fit up to a dozen passengers, but the seating occupies 4 passengers in Black Hawk model. It reaches a top speed of 178 mph (286 km/h) and has a range of 473 miles (761 km). It would cost you a $12.95 million.

8. Augusta Westland AW139:

luxury helicopters

The AW139 is appropriate for law enforcement, armed patrol and firefighters. It has a capacity to seat 8 passengers. The AW139 can reach an unbelievable top speed of 193 mph (310 km/h), with a range of 573 miles (922 km). It carries a beautiful interior costing you a hefty $14.5 million.

9. Bell 525 Relentless:

luxury helicopters

Like the Gulfstream 650 jet, the Bell 525 Relentless helicopter isn’t on the market currently. This chopper is going to cost $15 million. They predicted that the seating will be for 16, a top speed of 162 mph, and a range of 460 miles. This bright yellow Relentless with amazing seating will cost you a fortune.

10. Sikorsky S-92 VIP Configuration:

luxury helicopters

The S-92 can safely accommodate 9 passengers in its extensive interior cabin. The prices vary exponentially if you plan on decking the interiors with gold or crystal. The top speed of the S-92 is around 194 mph (312 km/h), with a range of 594 miles (956 km). The prices range from $17 million to $32 million.
Helicopter charter can be the most stress-free travel familiarity you will ever have. Which includes being able to travel outside of airports to reach vital meetings or even other flights in a different airport. Though rich class can afford these luxury helicopters, they are worth the investment.

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