The Chinese army transport variant of the Changhe Z-8, this version uses different engines (Turboméca Makila 2A turboshafts). The prototype, Z-8A-00, lacked the stabilising floats. The helicopter received its design certificate in February 1999.
Further variations were derived from the Z-8A, including the:
Z-8K, which entered service with the Chinese Air Force in 2007;
Z-8KA, an improvement upon the Z-8K also in service with the Chinese Air Force;
Z-8S, an SAR variant of the Z-8A intended for the Chinese Navy that had its initial flight in December 2004.
VTOL type: Helicopter
Lift devices: 1 Single main rotor
Dedicated control device: 1 Tail rotor
Crew required: 2 in Side-by-side arrangement
Landing gear: Wheels (all retractable)