Civil Helicopters News

Enstrom Helicopter Flies First 480B

Enstrom Helicopter Flies First 480B

Helicopter manufacturer Enstrom Helicopter Corporation test-flew the first new 480B, eight months after its reopening.

Enstrom said the rotorcraft is the 1317th Enstrom helicopter and the 255th 480 series helicopter built using components procured, machined, fabricated, and assembled onsite. The new helicopter will be showcased at HAI. Enstrom will retain the aircraft and use it to certify new upgrades and future improvements.

Enstrom Chief Operating Officer Adam Richardson said the test was a “critical milestone” and a start to reinvent the company and its operation. “It flew great,” said Test Pilot Cody Parkovich. “No issues. We were able to complete all our flight test steps on schedule. The team did a great job putting this helicopter together.”

As the seventh-largest Helicopter OEM in the Asia-Pacific region, according to Asian Sky Media’s China GA Report 2021, Enstrom received Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)’s production certificate in December 2022. The manufacturer, which had struggled to make ends meet during the pandemic due to a shrinking market, declared bankruptcy and closed down in January 2022 before American Entrepreneur Chuck Surack acquired the company.

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