All you need to know about the world’s first ever tiltrotor aircraft

1. The Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey is the world’s first successful military tiltrotor to take to the air and the largest active production line for tiltrotors

2. In March 1989, the V-22 took off for its first flight in Arlington, Texas

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V-22 first flight in March 1989

3. The V-22 main assembly facility is in Amarillo, Texas, or commonly known as Rotor City, USA, due to the V-22’s profound presence in the Texas Panhandle skies

4. The production group behind the V-22, more commonly known as “Team Osprey”, consists of more than 500 US-based suppliers and employs over 27,000 people across 44 states


United States Navy CMV-22 aircraft stopping by the Bell Plant 1 facility

5. Known as a versatile aircraft, the V-22 has deployed to several combat and humanitarian operations, provided earthquake relief, and aided with hurricane response across the globe

6. As a joint service military provider, the U.S. Marines, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, and Japan Ground Self Defense Force currently operate their own variants of the V-22 model – MV, CV, CMV, and Japan MV, respectively

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Japan Ground Self Defense Force perform simulated medical evacuation utilizing an MV-22B Osprey during Keen Sword 21 exercise at Marine Corps Air Station Futenma in Okinawa, Japan | Photo by: Lance Cpl. Alex Fairchild

7. In its 34 years of service, more than 475 V-22s have been ordered to complete combat and humanitarian missions worldwide


MV-22B Ospreys at Marine Corps Air Station New River, North Carolina prepare to fly | Photo by: Lance Cpl. Christian Cortez

8. Coupled with a rotating wing and rotors that fold horizontally, the V-22 can be stored aboard an aircraft carrier or assault ship – allowing the tiltrotor aircraft to be transported to complete missions worldwide


MV-22 Osprey aboard amphibious assault carrier USS Tripoli | Photo by: PO3 Christopher Sypert

9. The V-22 is used for a wide-range of missions, including long-range infiltration, exfiltration, medium-range assault, special operations, VIP transport, resupply, disaster relief, search-and-rescue, medical evacuation, and humanitarian missions


U.S. Air Force Joint Task Force 505 helps evacuate earthquake victims from an area near Charikot, Nepal

10. This multi-engine aircraft is equipped with dual Rolls-Royce Liberty AE1107C engines

11. Up to 24 personnel can sit inside the tiltrotor aircraft

12. With aerial refueling capability using high-speed drogues, the V-22 allows continuous flight for several hours or more

13. The V-22 travels nearly twice as fast as most average helicopters

14. The V-22’s speed and wide coverage area allows for rapid response time during the “Golden Hour”, or the first and most critical hour after an incident

15. The V-22 is equipped with complete runway independence technologies, allowing it to take off and land wherever it’s needed the most

16. At present, the V-22 has surpassed more than 700,000 flight hours

17. The V-22 has made more than 40 notable appearances in movies and video games, including the Transformers and Call of Duty series

18. Starting in December 2021, Bell began offering improvement kits for the V-22’s two nacelles to maintain the reliability rate and boost mission readiness

19. CV-22 nacelle improvement program recently surpassed 1,000 flight hours - strengthening endurance for its full range of military operations

20. Equipped with modern fly-by-wire controls, the V-22’s high-tech equipment allows for less pilot workload and more situational awareness

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An MV-22 Osprey assigned to the Aviation Combat Element, 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit prepares to land aboard amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (LHD 3) during a deck landing qualification | Photo by: Staff Sgt. Brittney Vella

21. The V-22 model was developed from more than 85 years of Bell pioneering innovative vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) configurations like the X-14, X-22, XV-3, XV-15, and eventually the V-22

22. With corrosion resistant coatings and bladefold for shipboard storage, the V-22 is designed to successfully navigate in the world’s harshest environments

The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.

Gianna Messina

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About Bell

Thinking above and beyond is what we do. For more than 85 years, we’ve been reimagining the experience of flight – and where it can take us.

We are pioneers. We were the first to break the sound barrier and to certify a commercial helicopter. We were a part of NASA’s first lunar mission and brought advanced tiltrotor systems to market. Today, we’re defining the future of advanced air mobility.

Headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas – as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Textron Inc., – we have strategic locations around the globe. And with nearly one quarter of our workforce having served, helping our military achieve their missions is a passion of ours.

Above all, our breakthrough innovations deliver exceptional experiences to our customers. Efficiently. Reliably. And always, with safety at the forefront.

About Textron

Textron Inc. is a multi-industry company that leverages its global network of aircraft, defense, 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, Cessna, Beechcraft, Pipistrel, Jacobsen, Kautex, Lycoming, E-Z-GO, Arctic Cat, and Textron Systems. For more information, visit: www.textron.com.

Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking statements which may project revenues or describe strategies, goals, outlook or other non-historical matters; these statements speak only as of the date on which they are made, and we undertake no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements. These statements are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors that may cause our actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, changes in aircraft delivery schedules or cancellations or deferrals of orders; our ability to keep pace with our competitors in the introduction of new products and upgrades with features and technologies desired by our customers; changes in government regulations or policies on the export and import of our products; volatility in the global economy or changes in worldwide political conditions that adversely impact demand for our products; volatility in interest rates or foreign exchange rates; and risks related to our international business, including establishing and maintaining facilities in locations around the world and relying on joint venture partners, subcontractors, suppliers, representatives, consultants and other business partners in connection with international business, including in emerging market countries.

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