Bell Boeing has received a contract from the US Navy to deliver five Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft to Japan.
The new order represents the first sale of the aircraft through the US Government’s foreign military sales programme.
Under this Block C aircraft contract, Bell Boeing will also be responsible to deliver support, training, and equipment.
Bell Helicopter military business executive vice-president Mitch Snyder said: "The Bell Boeing team is honoured to have Japan as the first international customer for the V-22 tiltrotor.
"The distinct performance envelope of the V-22 will provide Japan with an ideal solution when the need arises. When assets are required on-target in a location without an airstrip, the self-deployable Osprey provides customers with an unrivalled combination of speed, range, and payload to execute a variety of missions."
The new deliveries will support Japan’s Ground Self-Defense Force in strengthening its capabilities. It will also provide a suitable platform for relief efforts in response to natural disasters.
The Bell Boeing V-22 is claimed to be the safest aircraft operated by the US Marine Corps, and has successfully executed missions in Afghanistan, the Persian Gulf and the Mediterranean, since its deployment in 2007.
With its wide range of mission capabilities, the aircraft enables operators to carry out raids, casualty evacuation, tactical recovery of aircraft and personnel, humanitarian assistance / disaster relief and resupply, as well as VIP transport and theatre security cooperation operations.
Image: A Bell Boeing V-22 aircraft. Photo: courtesy of James Haseltine (US Air Force).