First AW101 for Polish Navy in full colors

On 4 November 2021, the first picture of a Leonardo AW101 Merlin in full colors for the Lotnictwo Marynarki Wojennej (LMW, Polish Navy) popped up on social media.

The picture was taken at Yeovil (UK) and the helicopter was seen with temporary registration ZR286. On 12 July Phil Adkin photographed a Leonardo AW101 Merlin for the Polish Navy in primer with temporary registration ZR285.

Originally the Polish Navy planned to acquire eight AW101 maritime helicopters to replace its ageing Mi-14 helicopters currently operated by the 44 Baza Lotnictwa Morskiego (44.BLotM) at Darłowo air base (Poland).

Poland Navy AW101 Liam Toohill 320However, in 2018, due to financial reasons, the Polish Ministry of National Defence reduced the number of helicopters planned for acquisition to four, postponing the purchase of another four.

The registrations assigned to the four helicopters are 6201 to 6204. Temporary registration ZR285 belongs to serial 6201 and temporary registration ZR286 belongs to serial 6202. The temporary registrations for 6203 and 6204, as well as the construction numbers for 6202 to 6204 are not known at this moment. The construction number for the 6201 (ZR285) is 50285.

Photos by Chris Gilligan and Liam Toohill

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