India is buying twelve British AW101 transport helicopters, for $64 million each. The AW101s are 15 ton medium transport helicopters. The Royal Air Force began using them eight years ago, which helped persuade the Indians that this aircraft was worth the price. The Indian AW101s will be used to transport VIPs and important cargo. AW101s can carry five tons of cargo or up to twenty passengers. Top speed is 300 kilometers an hour and endurance is about four hours.
About 180 AW101s are in use worldwide, and have spent about 200,000 hours in the air. They have an excellent reliability and safety record. The Indian ones will begin arriving in three years. The price includes a five year service contract and crew training.