Bell 210 Prepares for December '04 First Flight With FAA Certification to Follow 1Q 2005

October 12, 2004
NBAA - Las Vegas, NV - October 12, 2004 - The Bell 210 has attracted the interest of the U.S. Army, which is expected to issue a draft request for proposal (RFP) in October for its Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) program. There are many missions now supported by the US Army with assets that are marked for reduction in the coming years that the Bell 210 could more economically perform. These Army Light Utility Helicopters will perform future utility missions for non-combat organizations (TDA), National Guard utility and MEDAVAC, drug interdiction efforts (RAID), and Homeland Defense (HLD) missions.

The Bell 210 is a civil certified version of the U.S. Army UH-1H. Starting with a refurbished UH-1H fuselage, Bell Helicopter adds dynamic components from the Bell 212 (main rotor hub and blades, tail rotor, main and tail rotor support structure, transmission, rotating controls, and tail boom), and an FAA certified Honeywell T5317B engine. This combination of dynamic components and engine produces a zero-time airframe, FAA certified single engine light utility helicopter.

Work on the first Bell 210 prototype (a/c #01 s/n 21001), is on schedule at Bell subsidiary, Edwards & Associates. Upcoming milestones include Controls Proof Load Testing planned for November with first flight to follow in December. Following FAA type Certification in January Bell plans to have the Bell 210 make its debut at the 2005 HeliExpo in February.

Cost of the Bell 210 will be approximately $3 million. A comparable Huey-sized off the shelf commercial aircraft would cost approximately $5 million. The Bell 210 will have a useful load around 5000 pounds, 640 lbs higher than the UH-1H, 400 shaft horsepower increased horsepower available, and the DOC will be about $530 an hour, considerably less than other aircraft in the same class.

"The Bell 210 is the perfect solution for the many agencies that use the UH-1H in utility, Homeland Security law enforcement or firefighting capacities," declared Bell CEO Mike Redenbaugh.

"It combines great performance with an existing logistical base, an unbeatable DOC and a tremendously low initial acquisition cost. Add to that complete FAA certification and the Bell 210 is truly the best total value proposition to be found in the market today," Mr. Redenbaugh explained.

Bell Helicopter Textron, a subsidiary of Textron Inc., is a $1.6 billion, leading producer of commercial and military helicopters, and the pioneer of the revolutionary tiltrotor aircraft. Globally recognized for customer service, innovation and superior quality, Bell's global workforce of over 7,500 employees serves customers flying Bell aircraft in over 120 countries.

Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) is a $10 billion multi-industry company with more than 43,000 employees in 40 countries. The company leverages its global network of aircraft, industrial and finance businesses to provide customers with innovative solutions and services. Textron is known around the world for its powerful brands such as Bell Helicopter, Cessna Aircraft, Kautex, Lycoming, E-Z-GO and Greenlee, among others. More information is available at

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David Rosenberg, Vice President, Investor Relations
(401) 457-2288
Kyle Williams, Manager, Investor Relations
(401) 457-2288

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