The British Army’s first Lynx AH mk9A helicopter upgraded with more powerful CTS800 engines, has successfully completed its maiden flight.

The maiden test flight of the helicopter took place for 60 minutes at the Yeovil facility of AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company that designed and manufactured the helicopter.

The new CTS800-4N engines will replace the current Gem engines on the Lynx, enhancing its power to operate in extreme hot and high conditions with maximum payloads.

The new engines require modifications to be carried out to the main gearbox, top deck structure, rear fuselage along with the cockpit, where the new engine controls and digital displays are installed.

AgustaWestland signed a contract with the UK Ministry of Defence in December 2008 for the installation of new CTS800-4N engines on 12 Lynx aircraft, of which four will be delivered in late 2009 and the rest in 2010.