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The first Leonardo AW109 VIP Trekker helicopter for a European customer debuted Sept. 25 at the Monaco Yacht Show. The Monaco Yacht Show (Sept. 25 to 28) is one of the most important international luxury yacht showcases. After the show, the VIP Trekker will fly to the United Kingdom for delivery thanks to Sloane Helicopters, Leonardo’s distributor for over 20 years in the United Kingdom and Ireland.
The AW109 Trekker is the newest model within Leonardo’s light twin-engine helicopter range. The Trekker joins a fleet of Leonardo VIP helicopters that lead the U.K. and Irish market: almost 100 aircraft with nearly 90 percent represented by the AW109 series (Power, Grand and GrandNew). This market is second only to Brazil where about 130 Leonardo VIP helicopters fly amongst 400 San Paolo helipads.
The helicopter maker and the distinguished Italian Style of its VIP helicopter design are embraced around the world, boasting a 44 percent global share in the twin-engine VIP helicopter market. The company’s fleet of 2,300 civil helicopters are used for law enforcement, offshore transport, utilities, search-and-rescue and VIP/corporate transport. More than 830 aircraft carry out a range of passenger transport missions including private, charter, scheduled flights, corporate, air-taxi, tourism, and VVIP.
Leonardo’s VIP helicopter models all share a strong commitment to high performance, versatility, safety, reliability, support and training services, design and a high level of customization. The company features the largest range of executive, corporate and government transport helicopters including the AW119Kx single engine 1.8 tonne, the AW109 series, the AW169, AW139, AW189 and the three-engine 16 tonne.
With the AW109 Trekker, Leonardo is destined to increase its notable market share, thanks to features that combine the qualities of the AW109 Grand — long recognized by operators — including its spacious cabin, state-of-the-art Genesys Aerosystems avionics and skids, particularly suitable for landing on yachts. The combination is unmatched in terms of cost/effectiveness, technology and performance.
Sloane Helicopters will be maintaining two AW109 Trekkers in U.K. Building on the qualities that have made the AW109 series the benchmark helicopters in its category, Sloane will be performing demonstration flights with the new Leonardo light twin inviting operators to learn more about its unique characteristics.