What we know so far about Bell's 360 Invictus helicopter

Khalem Chapman takes a closer look atthe light attack/scout helicopter that is one of two platforms being considered by the US Army as a viable replacement for its Kiowa Warrior fleet.

Part of the US Army’s Future Vertical Lift portfolio, the Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft (FARA) programme is an ongoing competitive effort that aims to source a replacement for the service’s retired fleet of Bell OH-58D Kiowa Warrior light attack/scout helicopters. The Army’s Futures Command, along with its subordinate Combat Capabilities Development Command, is responsible for the overall project.

Bell 360
This digital rendering shows the Bell 360 Invictus in flight. The image highlights the design change Bell made to the helicopter’s tail-rotor configuration. Initially, the type was to have a shrouded tail rotor, but now it will feature a more traditional, open system. Bell Flight

Having delivered Kiowas to the US Army, and supported the fleet’s development and continued use from the late 1960s to September 2017, it was a given that Bell would seek to prolong this relationship by providing the type’s successor. This was confirmed on October 1, 2019, when the US rotorcraft-manufacturing giant unveiled the 360 Invictus, a month after announcing its partnership with Collins Aerospace on the project.


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