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Wessex HU.5: Her Majesty’s Helicopter

In this blog we’ll be taking a look at a familiar helicopter silhouette with a distinctly British twist. Meet the Wessex HU.5, which will soon be coming to the game in the next War Thunder major update. This important domestic rotary-winged icon will soon reinforce the British helicopter tree!

Wessex HU.5: A Utility Helicopter for Great Britain at Rank V

Features:

  • AS.11 and AS.12 AGMs.
  • Turboshaft engine.
  • Improved flight performance.
Vehicle History

Westland Helicopters began work on the Wessex in the late 1950s after the relative success of their previous American origin Dragonfly and Whirlwind licence built designs. Following the acquisition rights to produce the Sikorsky S58/H-34, a singular S58 was transferred to Britain as a development and template vehicle. By 1958, a domestically produced and redeveloped version powered by a Napier Gazelle turboshaft engine, rather than the piston engine of the Sikorsky design, designated the Wessex HAS.1 (Helicopter Anti-Submarine), would take to the skies for the first time. Entering service initially with the Royal Navy, the Royal Air Force would later adopt the type too. In addition to this, the Royal Australian Navy and several other customers that Westland could sell too.

The HAS.3 would further enhance the systems on board the Wessex, followed by the HU.5 Commando variant. Primarily a troop transport and also utilised in the Search and Rescue role, the HU.5 employed a further improved power plant in the form of two Rolls-Royce Gnome engines. Serving all over the world from Cyprus, to the Indonesia–Malaysia conflict and the Falklands War, the Wessex was operated in utility, lift, transport and attack roles.

Retiring finally in the early 2000s, the Wessex was finally replaced in all major roles it maintained by the Westland Sea King which it had served alongside for many years.

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Meet the Wessex HU.5!

The Wessex HU.5 is a British development of the already well known H-34 family. Domestically produced and improved, this modification is an attack variant of this famous helicopter that will provide a variety of ordinance options as well as a more powerful power plant. Let’s take a closer look!

While it might look visually quite similar to the H-34 that French and American pilots may be used too, the Wessex is quite a different beast under the hood! Powered by two Rolls-Royce Gnome engines, the Wessex has a significant power increase and performance over the Choctaw. The distinctive nose profile marks this helicopter’s main distinguishing feature compared to its piston engined counterpart.

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Interesting: The Westland Wessex served for 42 years in British service, one of the longest service lives of any British helicopter. It served in almost every major role, from Troop transport, Anti-Submarine warfare, Commando operations, Search and Rescue and even served as part of the “Queen's Flight”, carrying members of the Royal Family.

The Wessex also provides an expanded weapon arsenal over its counterparts, with both the AS.11 and AS.12 on offer. While these missiles can already be found on the Wasp, the Wessex can mount 2 of each at the same time. As well as this, you can take machine guns and unguided rockets to really maximise the flexibility that this helicopter offers.

In your matches by Scott, Community Manager: The Wessex will provide you with a very versatile all round platform to bridge the gaps between the existing British helicopters. It’s the polar opposite of the small and nimble Scout and Wasp, being significantly larger and more of a chunkier target, but you do however get to take the best of both of those and combine a loadout of AS.11s and AS.12s at once. Keep your distance initially and use your AS.12s first to deal with any SPAAs or stronger threats, then move in closer to utilise those AS.11s. Whilst you should not rely on them, the Wessex also has machine guns which can be useful in some situations for light targets or self defence. Giving you a great all rounder helicopter platform for your ground lineups.

The Wessex will soon be coming in for land in the next War Thunder major update, bolstering the ranks of the British Helicopter tree. Keep your eyes on the news for more information about what else you can find coming soon in the next update!

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