France orders H225M Caracal helicopters to support Airbus

by Jean-Marc Tanguy

French Armed Forces Minister Florence Parly announced on 15 April an order for eight H225M Caracal helicopters to support France’s aeronautics industry during a visit to Airbus Helicopters’ plant in Marignane.

France has ordered eight H225M Caracal helicopters to support Airbus. (Airbus Helicopters)

France has ordered eight H225M Caracal helicopters to support Airbus. (Airbus Helicopters)

The helicopters will be used by the French Air Force (FAF) and will be delivered in 2024–25. They will equip a new unit in Cazaux in southwestern France and Djibouti in the Horn of Africa where they will replace three Puma helicopters.

The new helicopters will be in a lighter configuration than the 19 Caracals already delivered to the French Armed Forces. The aircraft will not have self-protection equipment, although they will be wired for it, and will not necessarily have air-to-air refueling pods either.

The FAF will also conduct a lease-purchase programme for 15 H225s – the civilian version of the Caracal – which will replace 12 Puma and three Super Puma VIP helicopters. The 12 Pumas serve in Corsica, New Caledonia, and Guyana as utility and search-and-rescue (SAR) helicopters. Two can also be mobilised at a base in Paris for counterterrorism missions with the French Police and Gendarmerie intervention units: the GIGN and the RAID.

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news-detail/france-orders-h225m-caracal-helicopters-to-support-airbus

French Armed Forces Minister Florence Parly announced on 15 April an order for eight H225M Caracal h...

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