Procurement: July 1, 2001


Russian and American manufacturers are competing to sell South Korea attack helicopters. US firms are offering 36 AH-1Ws for $1.6 billion or 36 AH-64s for $2.4 billion. South Korea already has many older AH-1 gunships, so the more advanced AH-1Ws would be easier to integrate into their helicopter force than the more advanced, and more expensive, AH-64s. But Russia is offering 36 of it's new KA-52s for an undisclosed price (probably less than a billion dollars.) Russia needs the sale to jumpstart the marketing efforts for the KA-52. The AH-1W has an additional edge because of persistent technical problems with the AH-64. ALl US AH-64s were recently grounded because the rear rotor fell off one in flight. There were two previous groundings for other problems. The KA-52 is cursed with the long Russian reputation for flawed designs and poor manufacturing quality of its aircraft and weapons.


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