The world’s first commercial tiltrotor, the AgustaWestland AW609, is expected to be certified by the European Aviation Safety Agency and the Federal Aviation Administration by 2017.
According to Geoff Russell, Head of Media Relations at AgustaWestland, the company is working on the certification process for the AW609.
He added that with one prototype already flying in the US and another in Italy, another is expected to join the program later this year and one next.
AgustaWestland says the first two prototypes have already clocked up more than 650 flight hours and have proven the aircraft's ability to fly at altitudes of up to 25,000 feet and cruise at speeds of up to 275 knots at the aircraft's maximum takeoff weight of 16,800 lb (7,620 kg).
The AW609 is designed to fly with a crew of one or two and accommodate six to nine passengers. Powered by two Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6C-67A turboshaft engines, each delivering 1,940 hp (1,447 kW), and boasts a range of 700 nautical miles (805 miles, 1,296 km).
The company says it has already received orders for around 70 aircraft to perform a range of commercial and government roles.