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First Hungarian KC-390 military transport aircraft arrives in Hungary for testing

Text: Ministry of Defence | Photo: Embraer |  11:47 April 12, 2024

The military transport aircraft KC-390 produced for Hungary will be staying at Kecskemét air base for three weeks starting from 12 April – announced Defence Minister Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky.


The minister of defence said that the testing schedule – which began after the maiden flight of the aircraft on 8 February 2024 – has reached its last phase, and so the final stage of the production process involves ground-based and aerial tests. In the present phase of the testing, special NATO communications equipment is being built in and validated, and then the aircraft will return to Brazil to complete the final assembly.

The minister said that for the time being, the aircraft is not flying with Hungarian registration mark on it. Its official handover and the accompanying registration in Hungary are expected to take place in the autumn. The minister recalled that mobility – a fundamental need of all armed forces – makes it increasingly necessary to develop the air transport sector as well. The use of military transport aircraft with high cargo capacity meeting contemporary standards is justified not only by the speed of logistic support but – in view of Hungary’s active engagement in foreign missions conducted in faraway countries – also by the airlift of troops and supplies over increasingly longer distances.

In order to extend the range of their capabilities in the field of military airlift, and also prompted by the An-26 military transport planes’ withdrawal from service of as well as the increasing military transportation needs, the Hungarian Defence Forces are to procure two Embraer KC-390 transport aircraft by 2024. The Hungarian variant of this aircraft type – which is capable of carrying up to 26 tons of payload – will be suitable for air-to-air refueling and configurable with intensive care unit (ICU) beds for patients/casualties. The two transport aircraft are scheduled to arrive in Hungary as their home station by the end of 2024.

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