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Mil Mi-1 (Hare)

Light Utility / Liaison Helicopter

Mil Mi-1 (Hare)

Light Utility / Liaison Helicopter


The Mil Mi-1 Hare light utility helicopter marked the first Soviet helicopter to enter quantitative production for operational service.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: Soviet Union
YEAR: 1950
STATUS: Retired, Out-of-Service
MANUFACTURER(S): Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant - Soviet Union
OPERATORS: Afghanistan; Albania; Algeria; Bulgaria; China; Cuba; Czechoslovakia; East Germany; Egypt; Finland; Hungary; Iraq; Mongolia; North Korea; Poland; Romania; Soviet Union; Syria; United Arab Republic; North Vietnam (Vietnam); Yemen

Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the Mil Mi-1 (Hare) model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.
LENGTH: 39.70 feet (12.1 meters)
WIDTH: 47.08 feet (14.35 meters)
HEIGHT: 10.83 feet (3.3 meters)
WEIGHT (EMPTY): 3,748 pounds (1,700 kilograms)
WEIGHT (MTOW): 5,137 pounds (2,330 kilograms)
ENGINE: 1 x Ivchenko AI-26V radial piston engine developing 575 horsepower and driving three-bladed main rotor and two-bladed tail rotor.
SPEED (MAX): 115 miles-per-hour (185 kilometers-per-hour; 100 knots)
RANGE: 267 miles (430 kilometers; 232 nautical miles)
CEILING: 11,483 feet (3,500 meters; 2.17 miles)
RATE-OF-CLIMB: 1,045 feet-per-minute (319 meters-per-minute)


None. Anti-tank missiles trialed but not implemented in operational models.

Series Model Variants
• EG-1 - Original product designation
• GM-1 - Revised product designation; prototypes powered by Ivchenko AI-26GR radial piston engine of 500 to 550 horsepower.
• Mi-1 - Initial production model; three-seat form; fitted with AI-26GRF radial engine of 575 horsepower.
• Mi-1T - Fitted with AI-26V radial engine.
• Mi-1KR (TKR) - Model of 1956; light reconnaissance / liaison model based on Mi-1T mark.
• Mi-1NKh - Utility model based on Mi-1T for civilian market sectors
• Mi-1A - General purpose model of 1957; improved reliability
• Mi-1AKR - Light reconnaissance / liaison model based on Mi-1A mark.
• Mi-1U - Dual-control trainer model of Mi-1
• Mi-1TU - Dual-control trainer model of Mi-1T
• Mi-1AU - Dual-control trainer model of Mi-1A
• Mi-1MU - Dual-control trainer model of Mi-1M
• Mi-1M - Four-seat variant introduced in 1957; revised nose section and raised cabin roof line.
• Mi-1M "Moskvich" - Aeroflot passenger model; all-metal rotor; hydraulic control scheme; soundproofing added to passenger cabin.
• MI-1MNKh - Utility model based on Mi-1M mark for civilian market roles.
• Mi-1MG - Model of 1958; based on Mi-1M with floats for on-water landings / take-offs; two examples completed.
• Mi-1MRK - Model of 1960; liaison / artillery-spotting platform prototype based on Mi-1M frame.
• SM-1 - Polish local production model of Mi-1; fitted with LiT-3 radial engine.
• SM-1/600 - Improved Polish mode of 1957
• SM-1W - Polish Mi-1M model of 1960
• SM-1WS - Polish Mi-1M model of 1963; improved reliability.
• SM-1WSz - Polish MEDEVAC model
• SM-1WZ - Polish agricultural sector model
• SM-2 - Improved Polish mark with lengthened fuselage and seating for five.
• Mi-3 - Proposed improved Mi-2 with four-bladed main rotor design; not adopted.


Detailing the development and operational history of the Mil Mi-1 (Hare) Light Utility / Liaison Helicopter.  Entry last updated on 8/24/2018. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©
Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant has been in the rotary-wing business since the Cold War-era and their first notable creation was the Mi-1, NATO codename of "Hare". Some 2,600 of this single-engine, three-seat light utility helicopter were produced from 1950 until 1965 with service introduction in 1950. The Mi-1 marked the first helicopter to enter serial production for the Soviet Union and the type's manufacture was also taken up in Poland by WSK PZL-Swidnik under the PZL "SM-2" designation.

The Mi-1 began in a mid-1940s Soviet initiative under the product name of "EG-1" and this was refined into the "GM-1" powered by an Ivchenko AI-26GE radial engine of up to 550 horsepower output. A first-flight of a prototype was recorded on September 20th, 1948 and state trials followed in the subsequent year (at least two prototypes crashed during testing but this was not enough to derail production). Once adopted for service it was given the official designation of "Mi-1" and known to the United States Department of Defense (DoD) as the "Type 32'. An order for fifteen initial units was placed in February of 1950 and manufacture of the product ramped up in the following years.

The early Mi-1 form was a three-seat platform seating the pilot at front overlooking the nose and up to two passengers behind this position. The aircraft was certainly ungainly but a product of the period when rotary-wing flight was really coming into its own. The nosecone assembly was short and heavily windowed to afford the pilot as much vision out-of-the-cockpit was possible. More window panels were affixed to the side of the rounded fuselage. The engine was sat over the cabin roof with a solid mounting raising the three-bladed main rotor unit high above the cabin roof line. The tail unit was slim and held the applicable horizontal and vertical planes. At the extreme aft of the aircraft was a three-bladed anti-torque rotor set to the starboard side. The undercarriage was of a tricycle arrangement and wheeled through fixed in place during flight. Power was from an AI-26GRF radial engine of 575 horsepower.

The Mi-1T followed with a switch to the AI-26V radial piston engine. The Mi-1KR (TKR) was a light reconnaissance model doubling as a liaison platform and was introduced in 1956. The Mi-1NKh was another base utility model influenced by the Mi-1T mark and intended to serve in a variety of civilian market roles. The Mi-1A was introduced in 1957 and featured improved reliability. The Mi-1AKR was its light reconnaissance / liaison model.

The Mi-1U, Mi-1TU, Mi-1AU and Mi-1MU were dual-control trainer versions of the above primary models.

In 1957 arrived the Mi-1M which introduced a forth seat. The cabin's roof was slightly raised and the nose redesigned. The Mi-1M "Moskvich" was adopted by carrier Aeroflot and equipped with improved sound protection for the passengers as well as an all-metal main rotor assembly and hydraulic-assisted control scheme. The Mi-1MNKh was based on the Mi-1M and intended for the civilian market in a variety of roles.

The Mi-1MG carried floats for on-water landings and was introduced in 1958 though production of this model totaled just two examples. The Mi-1MRK was a prototype version set to serve in the liaison / artillery-spotting roles but not adopted after testing in the early 1960s. The Mi-1MU was another one-off model tested with anti-tank missiles.

The Poles took to license, local production of the Mi-1 and this began with the SM-1 fitting the LiT-3 radial piston engine. Then followed the SM-1/600 with increased lifespan in 1957. In 1960 arrived the SM-1W which was the Polish equivalent of the Mi-1M mark. The SM-1Wb was the Mi-1M with increased reliability and introduced in 1963. The SM-1WS served in the MEDEVAC role and the SM-1WSz was the dual-control trainer form. The SM-1WZ served the agricultural sector and the SM-2 was developed as an improved SM-1 with lengthened fuselage and seating for up to five. The Mi-3 was another (proposed) improvement on the line and carried a four-bladed main rotor assembly. This offering was replaced by the PZL W-3 Sokol coming in the 1980s.

Operators of the Mi-1 ranged from Afghanistan and Albania to Vietnam and Yemen - mainly Soviet allies and supported states.


Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.

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Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 120mph
Lo: 60mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (115mph).

    Graph average of 90 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
Graph showcases the Mil Mi-1 (Hare)'s operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units

  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.

Altitude Visualization
Small airplane graphic
Supported Roles
Ground Attack
Aerial Tanker
A2A=Air-to-Air; UAV=Unmanned; CAS=Close Support; ASW=Anti-Submarine; AEW=Airborne Early Warning; MEDEVAC=Medical Evac; EW=Electronic Warfare; SAR=Search-Rescue
Commitments / Honors
Military lapel ribbon for Operation Allied Force
Military lapel ribbon for the Arab-Israeli War
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Britain
Military lapel ribbon for the Battle of Midway
Military lapel ribbon for the Berlin Airlift
Military lapel ribbon for the Chaco War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cold War
Military lapel ribbon for the Cuban Missile Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for pioneering aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the Falklands War
Military lapel ribbon for the French-Indochina War
Military lapel ribbon for the Golden Age of Flight
Military lapel ribbon for the 1991 Gulf War
Military lapel ribbon for the Indo-Pak Wars
Military lapel ribbon for the Iran-Iraq War
Military lapel ribbon for the Korean War
Military lapel ribbon for the 1982 Lebanon War
Military lapel ribbon for the Malayan Emergency
Military lapel ribbon representing modern aircraft
Military lapel ribbon for the attack on Pearl Harbor
Military lapel ribbon for the Six Day War
Military lapel ribbon for the Soviet-Afghan War
Military lapel ribbon for the Spanish Civil War
Military lapel ribbon for the Suez Crisis
Military lapel ribbon for the Vietnam War
Military lapel ribbon for Warsaw Pact of the Cold War-era
Military lapel ribbon for the WASP (WW2)
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 1
Military lapel ribbon for the World War 2
Military lapel ribbon for the Yom Kippur War
Military lapel ribbon for experimental x-plane aircraft
* Ribbons not necessarily indicative of actual historical campaign ribbons. Ribbons are clickable to their respective campaigns/operations.