Back Bell/Agusta AB139

Mock-up of Bell/Agusta AB139

The new AB.139 - The medium twin engine helicopter capable of carrying up to 15 passengers or 2500kg useful load at 157 knots, in the most spacious cabin and with power to spare.

The AB.139 combines the benefits of proven technology and the latest new-generation system integration and compliance with the demanding JAR/FAR 29 standards. Add these benefits to the latest safety features, and you have the best vertical lift capability in the medium twin class.

This aircraft is setting the new standard against which all medium twin helicopters will be measured to satisfy the operator's needs of today and tomorrow.

First production Bell/Agusta AB139

Bell and Agusta announced on 8 September 1998 that they had agreed to establish a joint venture to manage development of two new aircraft: the BA609 tiltrotor, previously a Bell and Boeing programme, and the AB139, a new helicopter announced on the same day. Following approval of both boards, a definitive agreement was signed on 6 November 1998. Bell is the majority shareholder and will undertake final assembly for AB139s delivered to North America. Agusta. which has built Bell helicopters under licence since 1952, is investing and participating in development of the BA609, manufacturing some components and assembling those sold in Europe and certain other parts of the world. Additionally, Agusta is responsible for the AB139's development and certification, with participation by Bell. A military version was revealed in July 2000. Flight testing of the AB139 began in February 2001, followed by the BA609 in March 2003.


Announced at Farnborough Air Show, 8 September 1998, as joint venture between Agusta and Bell; to complement, rather than replace, Bell 412. Full-scale mockup unveiled at Pans Air Show 12 June 1999. Agusta responsible for development, certification to JAR/FAR 29 and transition to production, with participation by Bell on a 75:25% work-share basis; final assembly by Agusta at Vergiate, and by Bell (possibly at Mirabel, Canada) for American and Pacific Rim customers. No designated "prototype"; first preproduction aircraft (01, later I-ACOI) undertook maiden flight on 3 February 2001 followed bv second aircraft (02, later I-ATWO) on 4 June 2001 and third (03, later I-EPIC) on 22 October 2001; Assembly of first production aircraft began in late November 2001; this (I-ANEW) demonstrated at Farnborough in July 2002. Three preproduction aircraft and one tie-down helicopter (TDH) undertook flight test programme leading to Italian certification on 20 June 2003, following 1,600 hour ground and flight test programme (including those flown by first preproduction aircraft which was lost in crash on 22 April 2002) and 750 hours completed on the TDH. Full-scale mockup of AB139 Military unveiled at Farnborough International 2000 in July 2000; development may follow certification of civilian version, but not being actively promoted in mid-2003.

Risk-sharing collaborators include GKN Westland (tail rotor drive train), Honeywell (avionics), Kawasaki (transmission input module), Liebherr Germany (landing gear and air conditioning system), Pratt & Whitney Canada (power plant) and PZL Swidnik (airframe components).


AB139: Commercial law enforcement and SAR version, as described.

AB139 Military: Proposed multirole military helicopter with provision for armoured crew seats, electronic warfare protection, IR suppressors, two internal pintle-mounted machine guns and easily removable stubwing weapons supports for gun pods, rocket launchers and AAMs.

CUSTOMERS: More than 80 ordered by 25 customers by June 2003. Launch customer Bristow Helicopters of UK announced order for two on 26 September 2000 for delivery in 2003. Hawker Pacific ordered four on 12 February 2001 for corporate, utility and offshore operations in the Arabian Gulf. Recent customers include the government of Namibia, which has ordered two for VIP and multi-mission duties, and Evergreen International, which ordered two in June 2003. Selected for US Coast Guard 'Deepwater' programme vertical take-off/landing recovery and surveillance (VRS) requirement, with first delivery expected in 2012. Anticipated market for 900 over 20 years, some 55% for military use; 34% of sales projected in Europe, 23% in Middle East, 18% in Far East, 13% in South America and 12% in North America. Target of 20 deliveries by end of 2004.

COSTS: Commercial version US$7 million (2002).

DESIGN FEATURES: Design goals include high manoeuvrability and agility, low pilot workload, night/all-weather operation, low acoustic and infra-red emissions and mission flexibility for commercial and military operators. Intended for offshore support, medevac, corporate/VIP transport, SAR and military operations. Able to operate at maximum T-O weight from Class A helipads at 945m at ISA + 20°C. Five-blade, fully articulated, ballistic tolerant main rotor and four-blade tail rotor. Some transmission and rotor elements based on Agusta A129 Mangusta.

FLYING CONTROLS: Four-axis, digital AFCS.

LANDING GEAR: Heavy-duty, retractable tricycle type with twin wheels on nose unit; single wheels on mam units, which retract into side sponsons.

POWER PLANT: Two Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6C-67C turboshafts, with FADEC, each rated at 1,252kW for T-O and 1,142kW maximum continuous; OEI ratings 1,286kW for two minutes and 1,252kW maximum continuous. Fuel tanks behind main cabin. Main transmission can run for up to 30 minutes without oil.

ACCOMMODATION: Up to 15 passengers on crashworthy seats in three rows of five, two forward facing, one rearward facing, in unobstructed cabin with flat floor; flight-accessible baggage compartment at rear of cabin. Alternatively, six stretchers and four attendants in medevac configuration. Plug-type sliding door on each side of cabin, with separate crew doors.

SYSTEMS: Systems duplicated and separated, Main and tail rotor ice protection optional. Smiths Aerospace HUMS; Eaton Corporation Smart Zapper chip detection system for main transmission, intermediate and tail rotor gearboxes.

AVIONICS: Honeywell Primus Epic as core system. Provision for up to four 203 x 254mm high-definition colour active matrix liquid crystal displays for MFD, PFD and FLIR/video functions, and four-axis modular digital autopilot with flight director for hands-off operation and SAR modes.

Jane's All the World's Aircraft, 2004-2005

Bell/Agusta AB139

Technical data for Agusta AB139

Engine: 2 x Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6C-67C turboshafts, take-off power capacity: 1250kW, max continous power capacity: 1140kW, main rotor diameter: 13.80m, length with rotors turning: 16.65m, fuselage length: 13.53m, width: 3.2m, height: 4.95m, take-off weight: 6000kg, internal payload: 2500kg, external payload: 2700kg, max cruising speed: 290km/h, economic cruising speed: 278km/h, hovering ceiling, OGE: 3600m, endurance: 3.9h

TGCC, e-mail, 12.08.2015reply

We, as TRUST FOR GENERAL CONTRACTING CO., are interested in getting your phones and E-mails. we are AMISOM contractor in somalia.

Alexandra, e-mail, 29.01.2021 TGCC

If for you need today AW139 with equipment list for your request, we can to help you. Please contact by email:


Doink pilot Don, e-mail, 19.06.2010reply

Its a piece of junk,comes with an optional folding tail boom,Too much $$$$ for less machine.

muhsen alshamsi, e-mail, 13.11.2010reply

hi . meaby i got confuse about how i get what i want , basicly i want to know the price for agusta bell ab 139 , and i want to know if i order when i will get it . i want to use it for vip transport . this is my contact # 00971502177555

Alexandra, e-mail, 29.01.2021 muhsen alshamsi

If for you need today AW139 VIP with equipment list for your request, we can to help you. Please contact by email:


faisal, e-mail, 22.12.2010reply

I would love to fly it

abbas bangash, e-mail, 03.02.2011reply

Really nice transport and vip helicopter but Agusta Westland keep the monoply on the supply of parts, which is not good, why Italian like this? live like american, where you can buy any part and for any aircraft only it should not reach to the embarrgo country.

Stef Menc, e-mail, 07.02.2021 abbas bangash

Because Agusta-Westland live in monopholy in Italy, they are a bunch of hxxxxs who don't give a fuck about 'free market', in Italy never a foreign helicopter can be ordered by governative services, unless is 'agusta' made.


Ahmed Alsuhaimi, e-mail, 16.05.2011reply

I want to see the FM of the a /c

JAYANTA, e-mail, 04.07.2011reply

i really exiting know

maximus, e-mail, 06.09.2011reply

worldwide problem now is tail rotor, how agusta can support all clients ordering tail rotor,600hrs flying hrs is too short, like us we can consume 600hrs w /in 3 to 4 months it means we buy again tail rotor? this is not the solution....agusta maybe you can re-model you t /r designed...i will suggest that the t /r butt make it bigger it is so small to carry the wieght of your 139...

kamran malik, e-mail, 27.12.2013reply

i want to be helicopter mechanic recently i retired from air force and have sufficient knowledge about aircraft technology may i can work with you

aldo, e-mail, 02.07.2010reply

nice flying bird not cost effective VIP

Austin, e-mail, 26.03.2010reply

Anyone have contact info for the company that built the mock-up for this helicopter?

Cpt:Hamad Gamra, e-mail, 02.10.2009reply


HAMELIN AAFAG, e-mail, 22.03.2009reply



Matthew, e-mail, 05.02.2009reply

I was also wondering about the price because I may buy one in future:)

because its a good Helicopter and you can carry people who have broken their legs or so..... and it looks so cool.

T.Fitz Johnson, e-mail, 30.05.2008reply

I Love this ship, i was wondering about a price point? Was looking to purchase!


Jo Varkalis, e-mail, 20.08.2007reply

Please can you help me? I am looking for my cousin Gabriele Zanazzo who is /was a test pilot for your company? Do you know where he is at the moment. I would very much like to contact him.

Looking forward to hearing from you.

Jo Varkalis

XAVIER NOYA, e-mail, 18.05.2007reply


GIAN PIETRO BIRILLI, e-mail, 30.01.2007reply


Do you have any comments ?

Name   E-mail

Virtual Aircraft Museum

All the World's Rotorcraft