During an event taking place last week at Heli-Expo, Kopter Group’s CEO Andreas Löwenstein announced that Kopter will establish a new production facility for its SH09 helicopter in Lafayette, Louisiana. The facility had housed the final assembly of the 505 Jet Ranger X, but this was moved by the OEM to Canada in 2016, along with the cabin sub-assembly of the 525 Relentless.
This future production and support center comes in addition to the already existing and soon to be expanded Kopter sites in Switzerland, and will serve customers throughout the Americas. According to Kopter, deliveries of locally assembled
helicopters will start in 2021. Production should ramp up to an anticipated volume of around 100 SH09 per year.
The first series aircraft, S6, is anticipated to be delivered to the first customer in summer 2020. One of the primary focuses of the current programme is achieving EASA certification in the first half of 2020 which is expected to be shortly followed by the FAA.