EADS Bid to Replace the Kiowa Warrior

Well, here you have it, the Armed Aerial Scout 72X+. It’s EADS North America’s bid for the Army’s effort to replace or upgrade its ancient OH-58 Kiowa Warrior armed scout choppers.

Yup, the EADS bird looks like a beefed up version of the Army’s UH-72 Lakota Light Utility Helicopter — the EADS-made chopper that has replaced the service’s venerable UH-1 Hueys in non-combat roles — because that’s pretty much what it is.

Here’s what the company has to say about the Lakota on steroids:

The AAS-72X or AAS-72X+ could be built and delivered at a cost competitive with the upgrades planned for the Vietnam-era OH-58 Kiowa Warrior and fielded to Army units as early as 2016.

This variant is based on the commercial EC-145T2 aircraft which incorporates the more powerful Turbomeca Arriel 2E engines with dual channel FADEC, a Fenestron tail rotor for improved anti-torque, an upgraded transmission, the Helionix glass cockpit and avionics suite, and a 4-axis autopilot system.

These elements of the AAS-72X+ will offer the Army greater power, range, endurance and payload capacity when operating in 6,000 foot altitude and 95 degree environments, commonly known as “6K/95 high/hot” conditions — the most demanding environment for rotary-wing operations.

The AAS-72X+’s performance will exceed the Army’s previously published 6K/95 endurance requirement of 2 hours and 12 minutes plus a 20 minute fuel reserve, while carrying a 2,800 pound useful payload for mission equipment and crew.

EADS North America has delivered more than 210 UH-72A Lakotas to the Army and five the U.S. Navy, all on schedule and on budget.

Here’s EADS rival Sikorsky’s plan the scout chopper contest.

16 Comments on "EADS Bid to Replace the Kiowa Warrior"

  1. Sikorsky's seems more founded on new helicopter design which might be good or might be bad.

  2. They should get it just for this:

    "EADS North America has delivered more than 210 UH-72A Lakotas to the Army and five the U.S. Navy, all on schedule and on budget."

    When was the last time an American aircraft company did that?

  3. i'm wondering how the upgrades mentioned in the breif would make this lakota on roids acceptable for overseas use when the standard is not considered to be good enough?

  4. Still gonna haft'a go with the Sikorsky S-97. Its a purpose built machine as opposed to a conversion. In addition, it has a HUGE speed advantage (UH-72: 167 mph, OH-6: 175 mph, S-97: 250 mph), coaxial rotors (which, at least in my book, have many advantages over a conventional layout – not least of which is no more BHD incidents) and is bad @$$ to boot!

    The UH-72 ain't a bad helicopter, it's just the wrong tool for the job.

  5. Blue Thunder… the only choice…

  6. stephen russell | April 2, 2012 at 8:31 pm | Reply

    why not adapt Kiowa with NOTAR or ducted rotor & improve engines?
    or expand for fuel & for range.
    Save $$$$ for other projects.
    Then have EADS compete.
    Ducted tail rotor module.

  7. Would like to know what armament in can carry in the light attack mode, two .50 gunpods doesn't seem like a whole lot.

  8. Nice helo but let's not focus on one solution?

    Sikorsky S97 fits the bill.

    Nor should we forget the AH6i. Already in use, one of the most survivable airframes ever, US made and already compatible with the AH64 Blk III http://www.boeing.com/news/frontiers/archive/2010

  9. At this point I think we ought to just upgrade the OH-58 pending the S-97 or some variant of Sikorsky's X2 family.

  10. Save the taxpayer money by buying a UH-1Y???
    According to wiki…
    UH-1Y = $21.6 million
    UH-60 = $21.3 million
    UH-72 = $5.9 million
    Sure the Armed Aerial Scout 72X+ is going to cost more than the UH-72 but it is still going to be less than a UH-1Y. During a time of falling budgets across the DOD the Army is wise for going with the proven and cheap solution.

  11. I find this amusing

    WTF would ANYBODY want to suggest the S-97 CONCEPT HELO????

    The UH-72 is a tested design…
    Has been delivered on time on budget….

    I DON'T get it?

    You guys want another Marine One caper here?

  12. By the way….
    Anybody know what's going on with a NEW AFOne and Marine One?
    Will the VP and S/S get 787's?

  13. Tribulationtime | April 3, 2012 at 3:13 pm | Reply

    OH-58 Kiowa are in "F" variant now, with upgrades and rebufishing and worn up. National Guard is flying UH-72 with good reports, and get added a kit to expand uses. S-97 is a newborn with odds to expend decades to mature. OH-58 was tried to evolved in a modern one ARH-70 and didn´t work. I would put my money in a proven model.

  14. The Fenestron tail rotor on the photo above looks totally different than the tail in this photo (http://www.armedscout.com/images/gallery/Armedscout6.jpg) yet has has the same aircraft registration (N940AE). mock up?

  15. both look great. I was just wondering why they "Photoshopped" the original AAS-72X instead of giving a real photo for the press release.

  16. The Sikorsky has a lot of advantages over the retooled EADS helo. But the question should not be Sikorsky v EADs, but do we continue flying old helos when we can get a decent upgrade from Vietnam era technology, now, at a predictable price, with EADS. Its not much different than flying F18As and still waiting for F35s, why not buy some F18Es now?

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