Helicopters

Czech Republic wants to buy more UH-1Y and AH-1Z helicopters as a consequence of the War in Ukraine

The war in Ukraine has made the Czech government think twice about its procurement of the Bell UH-1Y and AH-1Z helicopters.

The war in Ukraine has made the Czech government think twice about its procurement of the Bell UH-1Y and AH-1Z helicopters, Alert 5 reports.

The local government is now thinking of buying more helicopters as the four AH-1Z and eight UH-1Y helicopters that were ordered is now deemed insufficient to meet the country’s defense needs.

Bell Textron has started production of the first AH-1Z Viper for the Czech Republic at Bell’s Amarillo Assembly Center, the company said in a news release on Feb. 23. The production of the Viper joins UH-1Y production as part of the Czech Republic Foreign Military Sale (FMS) of mixed fleet aircraft.

“Bell understands what it means to execute a successful international program,” said Mike Deslatte, vice president and H-1 program director, Bell. “We understand the importance of providing the unmatched capability of the H-1 aircraft to our customers. Bell remains focused on producing exceptional combat aircraft and providing modern capabilities for the Czech Air Force as a partner in the H-1 program, along with the U.S. Government.”

Bell’s work beyond aircraft manufacturing includes building a flight training device for the Czech Republic, essential to integrating the new helicopters into the Czech Armed Forces.

Bell began production on the Czech Republic UH-1Y in 2021, marking the first production for an international operator of the UH-1Y. The Czech Republic’s purchase of both the AH-1Z and UH-1Y takes full advantage of the 85 percent commonality between parts and enabling full mission capabilities between both aircraft.

The commonality between the aircraft enabled critical component supply chains to remain active during AH-1Z production for the USMC.

The Venom and the Viper are based on the Vietnam-era family of Huey helicopters, the UH-1 Iroquois and the derivative AH-1 Cobra.

In addition to the Czech Republic, Bell is actively producing AH-1Zs for the US Marines Corps and the Kingdom of Bahrain. In total, the H-1 program is on track to produce 217 AH-1Zs and 168 UH-1Ys, with more than 100 consecutive H-1s delivered on time for the USMC and FMS customers.

Photo credit: Czech Ministry of Defense

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

Recent Posts

The story of why the German Air Force and German Navy dubbed the F-104 Starfighter “Widow Maker”

The F-104 Starfighter Designed as a supersonic superiority fighter, the F-104 Starfighter was produced in… Read More

5 hours ago

Video shows C-130 Hercules “Buddy Start” (engine start utilising the propeller blast of another aircraft to effect engine starting)

The C-130 Hercules The C-130 Hercules primarily performs the tactical portion of the airlift mission.… Read More

5 hours ago

Legendary F-14 pilot Joe “Hoser” Satrapa tells the story of the gun kill on an F-15 that almost sold Tomcats to Japan

Joe “Hoser” Satrapa No dissertation on present-day section tactics, or on naval aviation in general,… Read More

1 day ago

Marine Infantry Rifleman tells why (except the VH-60 White Hawks flown by HMX-1) the USMC doesn’t use the Black Hawk Multirole Helicopter

The Black Hawk Multirole Helicopter The Black Hawk is the military's most versatile helicopter, suited… Read More

1 day ago

USAF reveals AGM-183A ARRW with live warhead in Guam during hypersonic weapon training

AGM-183A ARRW with live warhead in Guam Andersen Air Force Base (AFB) on Feb. 27,… Read More

2 days ago

Operation Tamouré: the only time a French Air Force Mirage IV strategic bomber dropped a live nuclear bomb

The Mirage IV The Suez crisis in October 1956 prompted France to look into setting… Read More

2 days ago