Attack helicopters have come a long way in terms of technological development since the American Bell AH-1 Cobra of 1967. All of the following elements are most likely to be found in a modern, dedicated attack helicopter: a tandem seat (usually a gunner in the front, a pilot in the back), narrow-body, little to no cargo space, armored crew compartment, 20 to 30 mm cannon, shaped charge guided anti-tank missiles (ATGMs), unguided smaller diameter rockets (usually high explosive-fragmentation), and nose-mounted sensor suite. As unmanned aerial vehicles become more common, most are integrating short-range air defense features, such as Sidewinder missiles on the tips of the weapons’ pylons or Stinger missiles on the hardpoints in Western designs. Attack helicopters are costly and demand significant investment, which is why only select countries have them. Continue on to discover the most incredible attack helicopters that are still in service to this day.
25. Harbin Z-19
Harbin Aircraft Manufacturing Corporation (HAMC) created the Harbin Z-19, also known as the WZ-19, a Chinese light reconnaissance/attack helicopter for the People’s Liberation Army Air Force and the Ground Force Air Force. It’s a combat variant of the Harbin Z-9, a license-built version of the Eurocopter Dauphin. It was first released in 2012 and is still in active service today.