Photo Airbus Military
17 November 2011 By Craig Hoyle / Shepard Group
Airbus Military has delivered the first of four additional CN-235 maritime patrol aircraft ordered by the Mexican navy, expanding the service's inventory of the type to three.
The twin turboprop aircraft are being acquired via the USA under a Foreign Military Sales deal worth almost $158 million, according to EADS North America, which uses the same airframe to deliver the US Coast Guard's HC-144A Ocean Sentry platform.
Applications for the Mexican CN-235s will include performing cargo and personnel transport, search and rescue, drug interdiction, and maritime environmental protection tasks, EADS NA said.
Pictured at Airbus Military's San Pablo final assembly site near Seville, Spain, aircraft AMP-122 carries the manufacturer's fully integrated tactical system mission suite, maritime search radar and an electro-optical/infrared camera in a ball turret beneath its nose.
"The remaining three aircraft will be delivered in the first half of 2012," Airbus Military said.
Mexico's navy already operates two General Electric CT7-9C-powered CN-235s for maritime patrol applications. These were both delivered in 2010, as assessed by Flightglobal's MiliCAS database.