In a joint ceremony to mark the 101st anniversary of the Guatemalan Air Force (Fuerza Aérea Guatemalteca), Bell Textron Inc., a Textron Inc. company, delivered two Subaru Bell 412EPX aircraft during an acceptance ceremony at La Aurora International Airport on 19 December. The helicopter delivery is a part of an ID/IQ contract signed between Bell and the US Army Multinational Aviation Special Programs Office (MASPO) earlier in 2022. The Guatemalan Air Force currently operates versions of the Bell 206, 212, 407, 412 and UH-1. The Subaru Bell 412EPX is the latest version of the Bell Huey family helicopter.
“We are excited to introduce the SUBARU BELL 412EPX into the Guatemalan Air Force. The aircraft will support missions including disaster response, humanitarian relief, and other utility needs,” said Major General Henry Yovani Reyes, Minister of National Defence.
“We are honored to bring the most modern version of the Bell 412 to Guatemala. Turnaround from signature to delivery is a statement to the men and women supporting this aircraft at every level of the business, and a testament to the efficiency of the IDIQ contract between Bell and MASPO,” said Carl Coffman, Bell vice president, Advanced Vertical Lift Systems sales and strategy.
Multi-mission capabilities make the Subaru Bell 412EPX a popular choice for customers with more than 54 percent of the Bell 412 global fleet deployed in military and para-public missions worldwide. The Bell 412 is a utility helicopter of the Huey family manufactured by Bell Helicopter. It is a development of the Bell 212, with the major difference being the composite four-blade main rotor. Development began in the late 1970s with two Bell 212s being converted into 412 prototypes. An advanced four-blade main rotor with a smaller diameter replaced the 212’s two-blade rotor. A Bell 412 prototype first flew in August 1979.
The Subaru Bell 412EPX is the latest version of the 412 aircraft, whose legacy spans more than 6.5 million flight hours. The 412EPX robust main rotor gearbox improves horsepower and maximum weight capacity, enabling the aircraft to transport more supplies and perform operations more efficiently. The SUBARU Bell 412EPX has a maximum internal weight of 12,200 lbs, external weight of 13,000 lbs and up to 5,000 lbs of goods with a cargo hook. Equipped with the Bell BasiX-Pro integrated glass cockpit display system, the aircraft offers a top cruise speed of 123 knots, 361-NM range and maximum endurance of 3.8 hours.