The first of 20 Leonardo AW119Kx helicopters ordered by Italy’s Carabinieri has started flying. The service has also received its sixth AW169M.
The first Leonardo RH119A (a variant of the AW119Kx), ordered by Italy’s Carabinieri, the Italian national gendarmerie, was photographed by our contributor Oscar Bernardi sporting its final livery during a recent test flight from Leonardo’s plant in Vergiate.
The aircraft, s/n 15501, carries experimental registration CSX 82103 and codes CC-61 is the first of 20 Koala built for the military police, that has ordered the helicopter in October 2022.
The AW119Kx is one of the three new helicopters models acquired in recent years (AW139 and AW169M being the other two types) to replace the AW109N and AB412 helicopters, and modernize the helicopter fleet.
The new fleet will allow the service to carry out a wide variety of patrol and reconnaissance tasks over land, identifying critical targets, gathering investigation evidence, and supporting ground units’ activities. Other duties also comprise environment monitoring and protection, and, if asked by the National Disaster Relief Authority, firefighting in addition to rescue missions.
By the way, Carabinieri took delivery of their sixth AW169M (designated UH-169M) on Jan. 19, 2024, at Vergiate.
According to Leonardo, the Carabinieri’s AW169Ms feature a special configuration including a rescue hoist, wire cutter, fast roping system, cargo hook, advanced ground proximity system, a night vision goggle-compatible cockpit, and searchlight. Further equipment and mission systems provided by Leonardo are integrated into the helicopter, including, among others, the LEOSS II electro-optics, mission console, IFF transponder, tactical radio, and the OPLS (Obstacle Proximity LiDAR System) collision avoidance system.