Rolls-Royce and Bell offer upgrades for 206L1 aircraft

Thursday, 1 March 2007

Orlando, FL: Rolls-Royce, the world-leading provider of power systems and services, will provide upgraded powerplants for Bell 206L1 helicopters after reaching an agreement with Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company. This agreement extends the successful relationship on the Bell 206 program.

Rolls-Royce and Bell have launched the joint upgrade program for the Model 250- powered helicopter fleet. Bell will certify an upgrade kit for the 206L1 helicopter to replace the existing Model 250 engine with the improved performance of the Model 250-C30P powerplant, which provides 650 shaft-horsepower at takeoff. This upgrade will enhance “hot and high” performance, increase payloads, improve residual value of the aircraft and increase safety margins. The engine upgrade will also result in real direct operating cost savings.

Bell plans to certify the powerplant upgrade kit for the 206L1 by the end of 2007, while Rolls-Royce is accepting engine orders now to ensure timely availability.

Scott Crislip, President Helicopters & Small Gas Turbine Engines for Rolls-Royce, said, “The enhanced performance and safety margins from this upgrade will offer value to owners and operators of the proven Bell 206L1 aircraft. Bell Helicopter is one of our longest and most valued customers and here is another example of our great partnership over the last several decades.”

Dorith Hakim, Bell 206 Program Director, said, “We are currently developing the latest upgrade kit for the 206L series helicopter that will improve its performance, boost payload and reduce direct operating costs. I believe this will help sustain the Bell 206 in the marketplace for years to come.“

Bell recently announced that its popular 206 model had celebrated its 40th anniversary, with thousands of aircraft powered by Model 250 engines. More than 6,500 Model 250s have been delivered to Bell for its 206 line since the first aircraft was unveiled at HAI in 1967.

In total, nearly 30,000 Model 250 engines have been produced, with approximately 16,000 remaining in service. It remains one of the highest-selling engines produced by Rolls-Royce.

  1. Rolls-Royce, the world-leading provider of power systems and services for use on land, at sea and in the air, operates in four global markets - civil aerospace, defence aerospace, marine and energy.
  2. It continues to invest in core technologies, products, people and capabilities with the objective of broadening and strengthening the product portfolio, improving efficiency and enhancing the environmental performance of its products. These investments create high barriers to entry.
  3. The success of its products is demonstrated by rapid and substantial gains in market share. The company now has a total of 54,000 gas turbines in service worldwide and they generate a demand for high-value services throughout their operational lives.
  4. Rolls-Royce has a broad customer base comprising 600 airlines, 4,000 corporate and utility aircraft and helicopter operators, 160 armed forces, more than 2,000 marine customers including 70 navies, and energy customers in 120 countries. Rolls-Royce is a technology leader, employing 38,000 people in offices, manufacturing and service facilities in 50 countries.

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