429 Airframe Memorandum of Agreement Signed By Bell and KAI

February 20, 2006

Singapore - February 20, 2006 - Bell Helicopter has executed a Memorandum of Agreement with Korea Aerospace Industries, Ltd (KAI) to begin the production efforts for airframes for the Bell 429 light twin IFR helicopter. The agreement is projected to cover all Bell 429 airframes for the next 10 years, which is estimated to be over $150 million. Bell and KAI intend to work toward the execution of a more definitive Supply Agreement over the next few months.

Since the announcement of the 429 helicopter and co-development agreement among Bell, KAI, and Mitsui Bussan Aerospace Company Ltd. during the Heli-Expo 2005, the Bell-KAI team has been successfully developing the 429 helicopter. The First Production Flight of the helicopter is planned in February 2007, and the first delivery to the customer is expected during the 4th quarter 2007.

The best-in-class capabilities of the 429 attract many customers all over the world, and more than 150 orders have been gathered so far. Bell and KAI are taking actions required to double the production capacity for the helicopter to meet the demand.

In addition to the sole source production of the airframe, KAI has the right to sell and assemble the 429 helicopters for the Korea and China markets.

The MOA was signed today in a special ceremony during the Asian Aerospace 2006 international aviation and aerospace trade show at Singapore's Changi Airport. Representing Bell Helicopter was Robert Fitzpatrick, senior vice president Marketing and Sales. Representing KAI was J.J. Park, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Strategic Business Division.

The Bell 429 offers the volume of an intermediate sized aircraft with the operating costs of the light twin. The Bell 429 employs ten new technologies developed under the company's Modular Affordable Product Line (MAPL) program. The 49 has several industry leading characteristics designed to satisfy our customers needs including:

  • Wide, unobstructed, best in class cabin volume—200 cu ft

  • Flat floor and open cabin to optimize mission flexibility

  • Seating for 7 passengers plus1 pilot—allowing for a wide variety of applications

  • Integrated sliding doors and optional clamshell doors for EMS operations

  • SPIFR/Cat A/Optional NVG configuration (will require USG export license)

Program development is proceeding on schedule with TCA and FAA certification expected to be in the 3rd quarter of 2007. Modified 427 Prototypes are flying various 429 components with first flight of the 429 prototype scheduled for the 3rd quarter of 2006. Bell has successfully completed concept demonstration tests, wind tunnel tests and inlet and exhaust testing. Detail design is near completion and parts and tooling are being built to construct the first prototype.

Preliminary information indicates the following flight performance characteristics:

  • Range—350 nm / Endurance—3.8 hours

  • HOGE—9,300 ft.

  • Empty Weight—4,300 lb / Useful Load—2,700 lb

The following kits are among a long list of optional equipment that are expected to be offered in the 429:

  • Cargo Hook Capacity—3,000 lb

  • 600 lb retractable hoist, outside skids

  • 2-patient capability with both attendants at patients head

  • High and low skid gear

  • Optional retractable-wheeled landing gear

  • Tail rotor guard

  • High density seating (9 plus one pilot)

Bell and KAI have been collaborating since 1987 starting with the airframe production for the Bell 212 and 412 helicopters. The development and production of the 429 helicopter expands cooperation of Bell and KAI in the commercial helicopter businesses.

Bell Helicopter is a leading producer of commercial and military helicopters and the pioneer of the revolutionary V-22 tilt rotor aircraft. Globally recognized for customer service, innovation and superior quality, Bell's global workforce serves customers flying Bell aircraft in over 120 countries. Bell is an operating unit of Textron.

Textron Inc is a $10 billion multi-industry company with 46,000 employees operating in 36 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, Jacobsen, Kautex, Lycoming, E-Z-GO and Greenlee, among others. More information is available at www.textron.com.

Connect with Textron IR

Eric Salander, Vice President, Investor Relations
(401) 457-2288
Cameron Vollmuth, Manager,
Investor Relations (401) 457-2288

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