- 01 Mar 2023
- Mike Chase
- Helicopter Comparisons
The Eurocopter AS365N-3 is the current production version of the AS365 Dauphin which first flew in 1972. Compared with the earlier N2 variant, it is more powerful with two 961 shp Turbomeca Arriel 2C turboshafts. It can be fitted with VIP seating for seven, but many Dauphins are used for offshore and utility work with up to 12 passengers and two crew.
A Eurocopter AS 365N-3 Dauphin 2 costs between $2.40m for a 1998 model and $4.80m for a 2011 model, according to Aircraft Bluebook’s Winter 2023 data. These prices represent the average retail for the respective production years. The sale price of individual AS 365N-3 models may vary, with some selling above, and others below the average for its model year. Helicopter prices are driven by several factors that are unique to an individual aircraft, including its maintenance condition, damage history, time remaining before the next major inspection, and more.
Depending on their requirements, operators may consider the more modern variant of the AS 365N-3 – the AS 365N-3+ - which combines the helicopter’s attractive power and capacity provision with an upgraded avionics suite.
The Eurocopter AS 365N-3 is noted as providing a significant power upgrade on predecessors in the line, along with a fast cruise speed. Combined with its roomy cabin, it appeals to VIP and corporate operators who demand a mixture of capacity and sophistication in their helicopter.
The newer AS 365N-3+ aircraft manufactured by Airbus improved on the avionics offered by the AS 365N-3. The AS 365N-3+ avionics includes a four-axis autopilot, which significantly cuts back on crew workload and boosts safety. This safety aspect is boosted by the AS 365N-3+ helicopter’s ability to fly at high speeds with stability in hover, and an excellent one engine inter-operative (OEI) performance, Airbus says.
Eurocopter AS 365N-3 Helicopter Overview
By Gerrard Cowan - Editor, Aircraft Reviews
With an upgraded version still in production today, the Eurocopter AS 365N-3 carved out a strong niche as a successful member of the long-established ‘Dauphin’ turbine helicopter family (which now sits under the auspices of Airbus Helicopters).
The medium-weight, twin-engine Dauphin family has been a strong presence on the market since the 1970s, with around 825 platforms sold for civil use in over 60 countries, and almost 200 operators. Specifically, 229 units of the AS 365N-3 Dauphin II were built, according to JETNET data published in December 2023.
What features does the Eurocopter AS 365N-3 offer?
The AS 365N-3 helicopter is more powerful than its predecessors, utilizing two 961 shaft horsepower Turbomeca Arriel 2C turboshaft engines.
The model specializes in ‘hot and high’ operations, and first hit the market in the late 1990s. It has a range of just under 500nm and can be fitted to seat seven in VIP configuration, although it can hold up to 12 passengers in other configurations.
What came before and after the Eurocopter AS 365N-3?
Civilian variants of the Dauphin family have been in operation since the 1970s, with the immediate predecessor to the AS 365N-3 being the AS 365N-2. The AS 365N-2 had Arriel 1C2 turboshafts and was sold as a fast executive transport with a main cabin for five or six passengers.
Today the range, manufactured and sold by Airbus Helicopters, is represented by the AS 365N-3+ model.
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