Third Nigerian AW109E

The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) will soon be taking delivery of a third AW109E Power helicopter from Leonardo Helicopters, after receiving two new examples in April, 2019.

The third aircraft CSX81960 (msn 11846, future NAF578) was seen undergoing pre-delivery test flights at Varese-Venegono airport in Italy on May 20, 2019.

The helicopter is painted in desert camouflage – the previous two AW109Es delivered were in dark green camouflage. They, NAF 576 (msn 11844) and NAF 577 (msn 11845) arrived in Nigeria in late April and were displayed during the NAF’s 55th anniversary celebrations between April 27 and 29, 2019, where they were fitted with gun and rocket pods.

The Nigerian Air Force previously said the aircraft would be armed gunships. The service is believed to have six AW109Es on order and will also be taking delivery of more Mil Mi-35M helicopters in the near future.