Germany is investing €2.1 billion in Airbus’s lightweight attack helicopters, the H145M.

H145M. Photo: Reproduction Twitter @AirbusHeli
H145M. Photo: Reproduction Twitter @AirbusHeli

The German Ministry of Defense has signed a contract with Airbus for the acquisition of 62 lightweight attack helicopters H145M, forming part of a fleet equipped to combat tanks from long distances – a direct lesson from battles in Ukraine.

+ Click here to view the video of the lightweight attack helicopter H145M

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As per the order, 57 of the aircraft will go to the Army, with five allocated to the Air Force’s special operations. An additional twenty are planned for a future option, as stated by Airbus Helicopters in a statement released on December 14.
Deliveries are set to commence in 2024, as per Airbus Helicopters.

On December 13, the German legislators approved the necessary funding request of €2.1 billion. All aircraft will be capable of carrying an armament package that is scheduled to include the guided anti-tank missile Spike LR, but only 24 will initially be configured for this purpose, according to defense sources in the Berlin parliament speaking anonymously due to the sensitivity of the topic.

H145M. Photo: Reproduction Twitter @AirbusHeli
H145M. Photo: Reproduction Twitter @AirbusHeli

The purchase, including the planned anti-tank capabilities, arises from the need for capacities to combat tanks.

In Ukraine, Russian helicopters managed to neutralize Ukrainian armored vehicles by firing their missiles from a safe distance.

According to the manufacturer, the latest version of the Spike LR missile, an Israeli project marketed by Eurospike in Europe, can reach targets up to 10 kilometers away when fired from helicopters.

+ Watch the demonstration video of the SPIKE missile fired from an AH64E Apache helicopter

The new helicopters are scheduled to replace the German Tiger helicopter fleet. Despite the significant purchase, defense authorities consider the H145M fleet as a “bridge solution” until a new generation of drones and ammunition is ready for long-term deployment on the battlefield.

Videos: Reproduction Twitter @AirbusHeli and @USArmy

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