Airbus’ Caracal Looks To Pounce On Malaysian Requirements


Airbus’ Caracal Looks To Pounce On Malaysian Requirements

April 30,2024

Airbus Helicopters Malaysia (AHM) is anticipating an increase in military demand for special operations, search and rescue (SAR), and tactical transport in Malaysia and the Asia Pacific region, an area where the European aircraft manufacturer’s “combat-proven multi-role H225M helicopter, also known as the Caracal is best suited for a wide range of mission requirements”, said AHM’s Managing Director Axel de Pascal at a media briefing on April 30.

He added that Airbus is particularly keen on steadily increasing its share of the military sector over the next five years, capitalising on the company’s long-standing presence and relationship here via its well-established ecosystem.

In Malaysia’s 2024 Budget, the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) received allocation for a dozen new helicopters, with Airbus standing by “to put forth its H225M for consideration when the time comes”. “Malaysia is already very familiar with the H225M capabilities, and will be able to benefit from a common fleet with immediate operational readiness and reduced operational costs,” added de Pascal.

The RMAF has been operating 12 H225M helicopters from its Kuantan and Labuan airbases which have logged over 30,000 flight hours as of March this year, making them the world’s highest military flyer since it entered RMAF service in 2012. Its Southeast Asia user ecosystem includes the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF), Indonesian Air Force (TNI-AU), and the Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF).

“We are confident that the additional H225M will complement RMAF’s existing fleet. With a ready ecosystem in place, any additional asset will result in considerable increase in efficiency for the air force at all levels.”

Production of the H225M will continue into 2040-2050 , ensuring stability and fleet support for the coming decades. The platform recently received upgraded main gear boxes among other industrial improvements which supplies ease of maintenance and enhanced cost effectiveness.

In a separate development, the Malaysian Home Ministry submitted a USD125 million acquisition of four helicopters for the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA), or the Malaysian Coast Guard (MCG)to the Finance Ministry. When asked to comment, Axel said “what I can say is that wherever there’s a requirement expressed by the Malaysian government, we are there”.-shp/adj/dl (Pix:RMAF, ADJ)