• Airbus Helicopters' Ecureuil (Squirrel) single-engined turbine. (Airbus Helicopters/Anthony Pecchi)
    Airbus Helicopters' Ecureuil (Squirrel) single-engined turbine. (Airbus Helicopters/Anthony Pecchi)

Airbus Helicopters this week announced that it had delivered the 7000th example of its Ecureuil light utility helicopter.

The aircraft, an H125, was delivered to French operator Blugeon Hélicoptères.

"Since the first Ecureuil took to the skies in 1974, this family of aircraft forever changed the light helicopter market and the way aerial work is performed," said Axel Aloccio, Head of the Light Helicopters programme at Airbus Helicopters. 

"Designed to be a simple, practical, and competitive aircraft, the secret of its success lies in its excellent performance and its incredible ability to adapt to operators' needs.

"It is precisely thanks to the confidence of operators like Blugeon that we are celebrating the milestone of the 7000th delivery today.”

The Ecureuil (French for squirrel)  family consists of the H125 and H130 in the civil market and the H125M armed reconnaissance, light attack and military trainer.

Both the civil and military versions are operated by 2014 customers in 124 countries, representing all regions of the world, in aerial work, passenger transpor, business flights, public services and emergency medical services (EMS), amassing 37 million flying hours.

The Ecureuil started its flying career as the Aerospatiale AS 350 in 1974. The current models are powered by a Safran Arriel 2D turbine and will carry two crew and up to six passengers.


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