YouTube – Tiger Helicopter
Turbomeca MTR 390
2 x 1,300 h.p. ea.
46 ft. 2 in.
12 ft. 7 in.
42 ft. 8 in.
The Tiger Helicopter, officially Europter EC-665 Tiger, is a battlefield helicopter whose primary mission is attack. It is equipped with the latest all weather avionics, sensors, and systems to launch its short and long range missiles against enemy armor.
The Tiger Helicopter project was initiated as a joint venture between France and Germany in 1984. The first production aircraft flew in 1991 and deployment began in 1998. Total development costs are reported to be about US$16.7 billion. Unit costs are between US$28.4 and US$41.5 million.
Originally 215 of the helicopters were to be used by France and some 200 by Germany. Those numbers have been revised downward due to the economic conditions.
The crew of the Tiger Helicopter enjoys excellent cockpit visibility. The seating is arranged so that the pilot sits low and forward in the helicopter, with the gunner behind and above.
The aiming site for the 30 mm cannon and missiles, in the nose of the Tiger Helicopter, is incorporated into its night vision systems. This permits the pilot to aim through his helmet.
Some Tiger Helicopters also incorporate a mast mounted sight containing a TV camera with laser and thermal technology.
The rotors of the Tiger Helicopter are made from composite materials and are tough enough to withstand small arms fire. Engines are armor plated, and the entire fuselage of the helicopter is comprised of a Kevlar composite that can stop 23 mm projectiles.
Three French Tiger Helicopters were deployed to Afghanistan in July of 2009 where they were used for close air support and recon. They flew missions for over 1,000 hours by July of 2010.
In June of 2011 French Tiger Helicopters began deployments against targets in Libya. They were launched from the French amphibious assault ship Tonnerre.
From December of 2012 through June of 2014 four German Tiger Helicopters were deployed to Afghanistan where they conducted close air support, convoy protection and reconnaissance flights. They flew some 260 missions, flying over 1,860 hours. The German Tiger Helicopters also participated in humanitarian relief operations after floods.
In January of 2013 several French Tiger Helicopters were deployed for combat operations against Islamists in Mali.
In March of 2013 Spain deployed three Tiger Helicopters to Afghanistan in support of Spanish ground forces.
In March of 2017 two German Tiger Helicopters were deployed to Mali in support of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission.
In October of 2018 it was reported that Royal Australian Navy will be using the Tiger Helicopter aboard its amphibious assault ships for reconnaissance and attack.
To date over 140 Tiger Helicopter units have been produced, with France ordering 40 helicopters, Germany 57 helicopters, Australia 21 helicopters and Spain 24 helicopters.
RC Tiger Helicopter