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June 14, 2019

Sikorsky lands $542M Presidential helicopter contract

PHOTO | Courtesy U.S. Marine Corps The VH-92A helicopter completed operational testing that included operating on the south lawn of the White House last September.

Sikorsky Aircraft has been awarded a $542 million U.S. Navy contract to build six VH-92A Presidential helicopters, the Stratford manufacturer announced this week.

The candidate who wins the election in 2020 will get to fly in them, as delivery of the helicopters will begin in 2021.

Dave Banquer, Sikorsky VH-92A program director, said Sikorsky has been building and providing helicopter transportation for every U.S. President since Dwight D. Eisenhower.

“We are excited to build the next generation of transport with the VH-92A helicopter,” he said in an announcement.

According to Banquer, this helicopter is capable of taking the President anywhere around the world, at any time. These helicopters will also be used to transport the Vice President and foreign heads of state. The vehicles’ communications systems are designed to allow the Commander-in-Chief and other leaders to perform their duties while on board.

VH-92A test aircraft have undergone “rigorous” testing, including more than 520 flight test hours, the company said in an announcement.

According to a U.S. Navy press release about the contract, the VH-92A aircraft will “increase performance and payload" over the current Presidential helicopters, the VH-3D and VH-60N, which have been serving for more than 40 years. The new helicopters will have better crew coordination systems and communications capabilities, according to the Navy.

The $542,023,016 figure covers the six helicopters, interim contractor support, initial spares, support equipment, and system parts replenishment, according to the U.S. Department of Defense.

Half of the work will be done in Stratford, with the remainder in Coatesville, Pa.; Owego, N.Y.; Patuxent River, Md.; and Quantico, Va. The aircraft are expected to be completed in April 2022.

Sikorsky is a Lockheed Martin company. Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs about 105,000 people.

James F. Geurts, assistant secretary of the Navy for research, development and acquisition, said in an announcement these aircraft will “provide safe, reliable and timely transportation with mission-critical communications that will support the security of our nation.”

Contact Michelle Tuccitto Sullo at

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