Attack helicopters have existed even before World War II and are known for their success. They are known for having a significant potential for eliminating their enemy tanks and removing the course for ground force troops.
In this article, I will explain some of the best attack helicopters currently in service and a few not. You will be able to learn about the features that make them the best out of all the other attack helicopters.
13 Best Attack Helicopters To See In 2022
Here are the 13 most effectively best attack helicopters on the battlefield.
- Mil Mi-24 Hind
- Bell AH-1Z Viper
- Mil Mi-28 Havoc
- Eurocopter Tiger
- Bell H-13 Sioux
- Denel AH-2 Rooivalk
- Kamov Ka-52
- Kaman SH-2 Seasprite/H-2 Tomahawk
- AH-64 Apache
- CAIC Z-10
- Agusta A129 Mangusta
- Bell UH-1 Iroquois
- Bell AH-1 SuperCobra
Let’s discuss each of these in detail below.
1. Mil Mi-24 Hind
The Mil Mi-24 Hind, also known as the flying tank, was manufactured in 1969. Developed by the Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant, it is a gunship and low-capacity transportation helicopter.
The traditional pod and boom design have a five-blade central propeller, a three-blade rear propeller, and retractable landing gear. Weapon units on the wingtips are inclusive of the six suspension weapon emplacements. Grenades and rocket launchers can also be mounted on the Mi-24.
Mi-24 is powered by two turboshaft Isotov TV3-117VMA engines, each producing 2200hp. Has a fuel accommodation of 1,500kg, with an extra 1,000 kilograms in an auxiliary tank.
Features include armored cockpits, bulletproof windscreens, and individual canopies. Four stretchers and eight troops can be accommodated in its central cabin with two crew pilots. Later versions of the Mi-24 are equipped with moving armored, anti-tank missiles and slow-moving targets.
- Crew: 2-3 pilots
- Length: 19.79 m (65 ft)
- Height: 6.5 m (21 ft 4 in)
- Empty weight: 8,500 kg (18,739 lb)
- Max takeoff weight: 12,000 kg (26,455 lb)
- Powerplant: 2×Isotov TV3-117 turboshaft engines, 1600 kW (2,200 hp) each
- Primary rotor diameter: 17.3 m (56 ft 9 in)
- Main rotor area: 235.1 m2 (2,531 sq ft)
- Maximum speed: 335 km/h
- Wingspan: 6.5 m (21 ft 4 in)
2. Bell AH-1Z Viper
The Bell AH-1Z Viper, in the year 2000, joined the US Marine Corps (USMC). It was developed and designed by Bell Textron, formerly called Bell Helicopter, an American aerospace manufacturer. US Marines’ gunship helicopter, equipped with a four-blade central propeller system.
Weapon units on the wingtips are inclusive of the four suspension weapon emplacements. AH-1Z can be equipped with 70mm rocket pods, six sidewinder missiles, 16 Hellfire missiles, and a 20mm mounted gun.
AH-1Z is powered by twin turboshaft electric T700-GE-401 engines, each producing 3,380 horsepower or 2,410kW. Has a fuel accommodation of 412.5 gallons. Features include an automatic control system, close air support, anti-air warfare, anti-armor operations, and armed reconnaissance.
Sensors in the Bell AH-1Z Viper are inclusive of a night targeting system (NTS), forward-looking infrared (FLIR) with a rangefinder, target sight system (TSS), and a Surface Warfare Center (NSWC). TSS includes four field-of-view eye-safe lasers and an auto-tracker with a multi-target system.
- Crew: Pilot and co-pilot
- Length: 58 ft 3 in (17.75 m)
- Height: 14 ft 4 in (4.37 m)
- Empty weight: 12,300 lb (5,579 kg)
- Max takeoff weight: 18,500 lb (8,391 kg)
- Powerplant: 2 × electric T700-GE-401C, 1800 hp (1,300 kW) each
- Primary rotor diameter: 48 ft (15 m)
- Main rotor area: 1,808 sq ft (168.0 m2)
- Maximum speed: 222 km/h
- Rate of climb: 2,790 ft/min (14.2 m/s)
3. Mil Mi-28 Havoc
The Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant developed the Mil Mi-28 Havoc. Released in 1996, it has night and day attack variants. Its blades are constructed out of composite materials with a traditional pod and boom design and a rear rotor.
The rear rotor is developed using the biplane configuration, which is regulated by X-shaped blades with lowered noise attributes. Mi-24 is powered by two turboshaft TV3-117VMA engines fitted with an extra power unit for self-managed function.
Features include fully armored cockpits and cabins, in-nose electronics, and bulletproof windshields that can fight 12.7–14.5 mm bullets.
Weapon units on the stub-wings are inclusive of the four suspension weapon emplacements. Unguided rockets, air-to-ground and air-to-air missiles, and podded guns can be mounted on the Mil Mi-28 Havoc.
Sensors included are a microwave radar antenna, a forward-looking infrared system (FLIR), and displays of location target information. The Mil Mi-28 Havoc night version is equipped with night-vision goggles.
- Crew: 1 pilot and one weapon systems officer
- Length: 17.01 m (55 ft 10 in)
- Height: 3.82 m (12 ft 6 in)
- Empty weight: 8,590 kg (18,938 lb)
- Max takeoff weight: 11,500 kg (25,353 lb)
- Powerplant: 2 × Klimov TV3-117 engines, 1,636 kW (2,194 hp) each
- Primary rotor diameter: 17.2 m (56 ft 5 in)
- Main rotor area: 232.35 m2 (2,501.0 sq ft)
- Maximum speed: 320 km/h (200 mph, 170 knots)
- Range: 435 km (270 mi, 235 NMI)
4. Eurocopter Tiger
The Eurocopter Tiger was developed by Airbus Helicopters, previously known as Eurocopter. It started its service in the year 1996 as an attack helicopter. Eurocopter Tiger is powered by a pair of turboshaft MTU Turbomeca Rolls-Royce MTR390 engines that are FADEC-controlled.
With its 13-meter hingeless main four-bladed rotor, it can achieve top circles and hostile g maneuvers, as the agility level is higher. Weapon units like air-to-air weapons and anti-tank Trigat missiles can be managed using dedicated management interfaces.
Cockpit features include an entire glass cockpit with tandem seats for the pilot and two-member crew. The pilot can also control the secondary weapons functions and the self-defense systems.
Undertakes of a broad spectrum of combat missions, including armed surveillance and reconnaissance, are also possible. Anti-tank, close air protection, escort, and support are also feasible.
Operations during the night, day, and in every weather condition are possible. Also, it developed to possess functions in the aftermath of chemical, biological, or nuclear warfare.
- Crew: Pilot and weapon system officer
- Length: 14.08 m (46 ft 2 in)
- Height: 3.83 m (12 ft 7 in)
- Empty weight: 3,060 kg (6,746 lb)
- Max takeoff weight: 6,000 kg (13,228 lb)
- Fuel capacity: 1,080 kg (2,381 lb)
- Powerplant: 2 × MTR390 engines, 972 kW (1,303 hp) each
- Primary rotor diameter: 13 m (42 ft 8 in)
- Main rotor area: 132.75 m2 (1,428.9 sq ft)
- Maximum speed: 290 km/h (180 mph, 160 knots)
5. Bell H-13 Sioux
The Bell H-13 Sioux was developed by Westland Aircraft. Started its service in the year 1947 for the United States Air Force. It is a three-seater light observation and primary training helicopter. H-13 Sioux looks like an exposed soap bubble canopy with a tube tail boom.
Bell H-13 Sioux is powered by a single Lycoming VO-435 six-cylinder engine horizontally collided with the piston. The engine is paired with double high-mounted outer saddle fuel tanks and produces around 260 horsepower.
A double-bladed single rotor with minor blades stabilizing inertial is employed on the H-13 Sioux.
H-13 and its other variants are usually fitted with a medical evacuation kit and a cradle with acrylic glass protection to shield the injured from the wind.
- Crew: 1 pilot and three troops
- Length: 31 ft 7 in (9.63 m)
- Height: 9 ft 8 in (2.95 m)
- Gross weight: 2,952 lb (1,339 kg)
- Powerplant: 1 × Lycoming TVO-435-A1A, 260 hp (190 kW)
- Primary rotor diameter: 37 ft 0 in (11.28 m)
- Maximum speed: 105 mph (169 km/h, 91 knots )
- Cruise speed: 84 mph (135 km/h, 73 knots )
- Range: 273 mi (439 km, 237 NMI)
- Service ceiling: 16,100 ft (4,900 m)
6. Denel AH-2 Rooivalk
The Denel AH-2 Rooivalk was developed and manufactured by Denel Aviation, the aviation division corporation of South Africa. Designed in the 1990s and was introduced only in 2011 due to the effects of restricted budgets.
It is powered by a twin turboshaft Turbomeca Makila 1K2 engine, each producing 1,900 horsepower.
Rooivalk is an attack helicopter with highly advanced technology designed to function in harsh environments and for extended durations without refined backing.
A range of weapons can be carried on depending on the task outline. Usually, it can be equipped with air-to-air missiles, unguided rockets, anti-armor missiles, and a nose-mounted 20 mm cannon. Essential spares are enough to keep Rooivalk flying four ground crews and can also fly upside down.
A navigation system using GPS and Doppler radar incorporates auto-tracking and gyro-stabilized sensors. Unique features included are fixed-wheeled undercarriage below and above the cockpit, a starboard tail rotor, and a tandem cockpit.
- Crew: A pilot and a weapon systems officer
- Length: 18.73 m (61 ft 5 in)
- Height: 5.19 m (17 ft 0 in)
- Empty weight: 5,730 kg (12,632 lb)
- Fuel capacity: 1,854 l (490 US gal; 408 imp gal)
- Powerplant: 2 × Turbomeca Makila 1K2 engines, 1,900 hp each
- Primary rotor diameter: × 15.58 m (51 ft 1 in)
- Main rotor area: 190.6 m2 (2,052 sq ft)
- Cruise speed: 278 km/h (173 mph, 150 knots)
- Range: 740 km (460 mi, 400 NMI)
7. Kamov Ka-52
The Kamov Ka-52 was introduced in 1997 and is also known as the Alligator. Ka-52 was developed into a twin-seat variant that needed a second troop member to handle the radar and optronics observation suite.
Ka-52 employs anti-corrosion materials and has a strengthened fuselage design. The blades of the propeller are constructed using polymer material. The absence of the rear propeller allows it to complete balanced turns within the entire flying speed span.
Landing wheels and gear are developed to increase the helicopter’s takeoff weight. It also features a modernized avionics system with a cooling system for functioning in hot conditions—it features a twin turboshaft Klimov VK-2500 engine that produces 2,400 horsepower each.
OES-52 electro-optical day-and-night observation system with thermal sighting and laser targeting system is also fitted above the cockpit and the nose.
A total of six weapons can be fitted on the external hardpoints on the stub wings, and wingtips can withstand a total of 2,000 kg weight. Anti-tank-guided missiles, rockets, laser-guided missiles, and radar-guided missiles can also be fitted.
- Crew: 1 pilot
- Length: 16 m (52 ft 6 in)
- Height: 4.93 m (16 ft 2 in)
- Empty weight: 7,700 kg (16,976 lb)
- Powerplant: 2 × Klimov VK-2500 engines, 1,800 kW (2,400 hp) each
- Primary rotor diameter: 2 × 14.5 m (47 ft 7 in)
- Main rotor area: 330.3 m2 (3,555 sq ft)
- Maximum speed: 315 km/h (196 mph, 170 knots )
- Cruise speed: 270 km/h (170 mph, 150 knots )
- Range: 545 km (339 mi, 294 NMI)
8. Kaman SH-2 Seasprite/H-2 Tomahawk
The Kaman SH-2 Seasprite/H-2 Tomahawk was designed by an American plant named Kaman Aircraft Corporation in 1959. Typically it is used as a closed and fast-moving helicopter for general purposes and anti-submarine warfare tasks.
Kaman SH-2 Seasprite is a compact all-purpose, all-weather helicopter with a powerful twin turboshaft General Electric T58-8F engine that produces 1,350 horsepower. It holds a 44-foot main rotor with four blades and a rear rotor with four edges.
Advanced processors, sensors, and display capabilities of line-of-sight limitations, prosecution of threats, and acoustic detection make the H-2 Tomahawk high a performing helicopter. Has a fuel capacity of 396 gallons for the inner fuel tank and 120 gallons for the additional outer fuel tank.
The Kaman SH-2 Seasprite/H-2 Tomahawk sensors include the forward-looking infrared (FLIR) sensor, dual infrared countermeasures, chaff, and flare launchers, and mine and missile detecting equipment.
- Crew: Pilot, Co-pilot, a Tactical Coordinator (TACCO), and a Sensor Operator
- Length: 38 ft 4 in (11.68 m)
- Height: 13 ft 7 in (4.14 m)
- Empty weight: 7,040 lb (3,193 kg)
- Fuel capacity: 396 US gal (330 imp gal; 1,500 l)
- Powerplant: 2 × General Electric T58-GE-8F engines, 1,350 hp each
- Primary rotor diameter: 44 ft 0 in (13.41 m)
- Main rotor area: 1,520.53 sq ft (141.262 m2)
- Maximum speed: 143 knots (165 mph, 265 km/h)
- Cruise speed: 130 knots (150 mph, 240 km/h)
9. AH-64 Apache
The AH-64 Apache was developed by Hughes Helicopters in 1975. Designed as an attack helicopter, it arrives with a rear-wheel landing gear configuration and a tandem cockpit for two troops.
Weapons can be boarded between the primary landing gear, beneath the front fuselage, and on the four hardpoints on the stub wings.
A mixture of missiles, rocket pods, guns, and avionics can be carried on the AH-64 Apache and powered by twin General Electric turboshaft T700-GE-701 engines, accompanied by mounted exhausts.
Both engines produce about 1,690 horsepower. The main rotor on the AH-64 has four blades, and the rear rotor has four edges. Troops sit in tandem, with the ability to fly the helicopter and execute techniques of weapon arrangements individually.
The cockpit, compartment, and rotor blades can uphold hits from bullets with a range of 23 mm. It features a self-sealing fuel tank system that can protect itself from ballistic missiles. Includes double sensor pods with a thermographic camera for precise location.
Can operate during the day and night time with sensors including the Target Acquisition and Designation System (TADS), Global Positioning System (GPS), passive infrared countermeasures, Pilot Night Vision System (PNVS), and IHADSS.
- Crew: Pilot, and co-pilot or a gunner
- Length: 58 ft 2 in (17.73 m)
- Height: 12 ft 8 in (3.87 m)
- Empty weight: 11,387 lb (5,165 kg)
- Powerplant: 2 × General Electric T700-GE-701 engines, 1,690 hp each
- Primary rotor diameter: 48 ft 0 in (14.63 m)
- Main rotor area: 1,908.5 sq ft (177.31 m2)
- Maximum speed: 158 knots (182 mph, 293 km/h)
- Cruise speed: 143 knots (165 mph, 265 km/h)
- Range: 257 NMI(296 mi, 476 km) with Longbow radar mast
10. CAIC Z-10
The CAIC Z-10, also known as the WZ-10, was designed by the People’s Liberation Army Ground Force in 2003 and was introduced in 2012. Developed as an attack helicopter, it is mainly used for anti-tank warfare tasks with an air-to-air warfare ability.
It is powered by two WZ-9G turboshaft engines producing about 1200 kW each. There are two designs, one with three colored LCDs and the other with two larger LCDs, both possessing the multi-operation displays (MFDs) functionality.
The tandem cockpit can accommodate two troops, the pilot and the gunner at the back. The cockpit is constructed from bullet-proof glass that can withstand 38-millimeter bullets and hits from machine guns.
Also, it comes with an extra armor plate and a tanned glass to stop the glare during the daytime. Armament includes mounted guns, gun pods on the stub wings, rockets, anti-tank missiles, and air-to-air missiles.
- Crew: Pilot and Gun man
- Length: 14.15 m (46 ft 5 in)
- Height: 3.85 m (12 ft 8 in)
- Empty weight: 5,100 kg (11,244 lb)
- Max takeoff weight: 7,000 kg (15,432 lb)
- Powerplant: 2 × WZ-9 engines, 1,247–1,283 hp each
- Primary rotor diameter: 12 m (39 ft 4 in)
- Maximum speed: 270 km/h (170 mph, 150 Knots)
- Cruise speed: 230 km/h (140 mph, 120 Knots)
- Range: 800 km (500 mi, 430 NMI)
11. Agusta A129 Mangusta
Agusta, an Italian company, manufactures the Agusta A129 Mangusta. It was designed in 1983 and introduced in 1990. Developed as an attack helicopter, it is known for its wholly computerized management system that helps in reducing the workload for the crew members.
It is powered by twin Rolls-Royce turboshaft Gem 2-1004D engines that produce 890 horsepower each. The turboshaft engine features include automated engine management and more straightforward commands for easy operation, which is accompanied by a short start-up break and lower fuel consumption.
With diverse capacities, the A129 Mangusta can perform ground attacks, anti-armor, fire support, armed surveillance, anti-aircraft missions, and escort.
Sensors on the Agusta A129 Mangusta are Single Integrated Air Picture (SIAP), infrared night vision systems in all weather situations, laser systems for target identification and range-finding purposes, and Forward-looking infrared (FLIR) with both automatic and manual tracking methods.
- Crew: Pilot and one Troop
- Length: 12.28 m (40 ft 3 in)
- Height: 3.35 m (11 ft 0 in)
- Max takeoff weight: 4,600 kg (10,141 lb)
- Powerplant: 2 × Rolls-Royce Gem 2-1004D engines, 890 hp each
- Primary rotor diameter: 11.9 m (39 ft 1 in)
- Main rotor area: 111.2 m2 (1,197 sq ft) 5-bladed the main rotor
- Maximum speed: 278 km/h (173 mph, 150 knots)
- Cruise speed: 229 km/h (142 mph, 124 knots)
- Range: 510 km (320 mi, 280 NMI)
12. Bell UH-1 Iroquois
The Bell UH-1 Iroquois, also known as the Huey, is developed by Bell Helicopter which is an American aerospace manufacturer. Launched in 1956, it is a multi-purpose helicopter designed for military service.
Constructed with a metal fuselage semi-monocoque, it contains a primary rotor, double blades, and tubular landing skids. Powered by the turboshaft single Lycoming T53 engine, that produces 700 horsepower to 1,400 horsepower.
Internal seating is constructed for pilots and extra seating of 13 crew members in the cabin. All seats are made of canvas material and aluminum tube frames that can be easily removed and reconfigured with six stretchers and other mission kits.
- Crew: Pilots, 14 troops, or equivalent cargo
- Capacity: 3,880 lb (1,760 kg)
- Length: 57 ft 9+5⁄8 in (17.618 m)
- Height: 14 ft 5+1⁄2 in (4.407 m)
- Max takeoff weight: 9,500 lb (4,309 kg)
- Powerplant: 1 × Lycoming T53-L-13, 1,400 hp
- Primary rotor diameter: 48 ft 0 in (14.63 m)
- Main rotor area: 1,809.56 sq ft (168.114 m2)
- Maximum speed: 127 mph (204 km/h, 110 Knots)
- Cruise speed: 127 mph (204 km/h, 110 Knots) (at 5,700 ft (1,700 m)
13. Bell AH-1 SuperCobra
The Bell AH-1 SuperCobra was manufactured in 1970 and developed by Bell Helicopter, an American aerospace manufacturer. Part of the Huey family, it was the mainstay of the attack helicopter fleet for the United States Marine Corps for generations.
A few of its variants include the AH-1T Improved SeaCobra, the AH-1J SeaCobra, and the AH-1W SuperCobra. Every variant has a main rotor with a four-blade system with lowered sound, high performance, and increased damage tolerance.
It is powered by a twin-engine P&W Canada turboshaft T400-CP-400 engine that produces 1,530 horsepower and has enhanced safety for above-water operations. Weapons on the AH-1 SuperCobra include the powerful gun turret, a three-barrel cannon, a turret-mounted weapon, and a six-barrel cannon.
- Crew: Pilot and A Gunman
- Length: 53 ft 5 in (16.28 m)
- Width: 10 ft 9 in (3.28 m)
- Height: 13 ft 5 in (4.09 m)
- Max takeoff weight: 10,000 lb (4,536 kg)
- Powerplant: 1 × P&W Canada T400-CP-400 engine, 1,530 hp
- Primary rotor diameter: 43 ft 11 in (13.39 m)
- Main rotor area: 1,514.97 sq ft (140.745 m2)
- Maximum speed: 152 knots (175 mph, 282 km/h)
- Range: 311 NMI (358 mi, 576 km)
So, here are the 13 best attack helicopters many countries use for military purposes.
Attack helicopters are costly and demanding from an economic standpoint; therefore, only a few nations have developed their designs—for example, Russia, China, the United States, the UK, etc.
I hope this article has helped you learn more about attack helicopters and their outstanding features.