September 5, 2011:
Russia is reviving production of the Mi-34C light helicopter, to provide training choppers for pilots flying the new M-29N and Ka-52 helicopter gunships. The original Mi-34 was designed at the end of the Cold War and entered production in 1993 as a four seat light helicopter. There were few orders. But now the Russian helicopter industry has been consolidated and supplied with more cash. There is also more demand in Russia for helicopters.
The new model is the Mi-34C1, and is a somewhat upgraded version of the original Mi-34C (which ceased production nine years ago after 22 were produced.) The four seat Mi-34C1 sells for about a million dollars each. It weighs 1.45 tons, has a max speed of 220 kilometers an hour and a cruising speed of 180 kilometers. Endurance is about two hours. The Mi-34 is also the first helicopter from East Europe that can do acrobatics (loops and rolls). The Mi-34C1 also has two hard points for sensors or spotlights. The electronics are modern and some of the key components come from Western suppliers.