• Nautilus Aviation representatives with a Bell 505 in Canada. (Textron Aviation)
    Nautilus Aviation representatives with a Bell 505 in Canada. (Textron Aviation)

North Queensland company Nautilus Aviation has taken delivery of two Bell 505 Jet Ranger X helicopters, the first of the type to arrive in Australia.

The two aircraft were originally delivered to Nautilus at Bell's Canadian base in October before being shipped to Australia for use in charter and tourism.

“At Nautilus, safety and excellence are paramount to us and in both regards, the Bell 505 has performed beyond our expectations throughout the test flights we took," said Aaron Finn, CEO of Nautilus Aviation. "I am confident that the new 505, with its advanced safety and avionics technology, will help us deliver a unique and safe experience for all our customers."

The two Nautilus Bell 505s are the first in the Asia-Pacific region, which Bell is forecasting will have the highest demand for the new type.

“The Australian helicopter market is one of the largest and most important segments globally for Bell," said Sameer A. Rehman, Managing Director of Bell Helicopter Asia Pacific. "We are pleased that the first 505s delivered into the region are with Nautilus Aviation, and are confident that both helicopters will deliver exceptional value to Nautilus in its endeavor to provide customers an unparalleled experience.

“We look forward to working closely with Nautilus to bring these aircraft into service and supporting Nautilus’ preparation of the aircraft for charter and utility operations.”

The Bell 505 is integrated with a flat floor, open cabin that can be configured for variety of missions and payloads. The cabin can carry up to four passengers or configured for internal cargo missions by removing the rear cabin seats and/or co-pilot seat.

The Bell 505 is a short light single (SLS) helicopter powered by a Turbomeca Arrius 2R engine and featuring Garmin 1000H avionics. It made its maiden flight in November 2014 and was CASA-certified in March 2017.

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