The helicopter is a civilian helicopter. Although the helicopter is not controllable nor accessible, it still has the characteristics of a normal vehicle. Smoke will still come out of the helicopter if damaged and it can still explode. The helicopter's durability varies throughout its appearances. It can be noted that Corrigan's helicopter is by far the most durable to gunfire, while the fixed spawn location in the Wii, Xbox and PlayStation 2 versions of the game is the weakest.
The 1978 era model of the helicopter appears as a light helicopter with exposed rear framework. The helicopter takes a rather compact appearance with a small bubble-canopy. The helicopter takes the appearance of a 1953 Bell 47 helicopter, particularly the Model G. The helicopter is seen with large blue skids.
The 2006 era model of the helicopter gains a complete restoration from the 1978 era. The helicopter is now based on a Bell 206B JetRanger, particularly the 1975 and 1989 models (the latter seen apparent in the front windows). The helicopter appears in numerous colors with a two-tone color scheme. It also appears as a 3D render by Ark VFX in the very final cutscene of the game.
- The helicopter doesn't spawn in normal gameplay, however there is fixed location exclusive to the Wii, Xbox and PlayStation 2 ports of the game. It spawns on a raised helipad mounted on the roof of a multi-story car park on the edge of Chinatown, on the coast of the East River. It can be moved and destroyed, however it cannot be entered as both the helicopter and its police variant are both uncontrollable.
- Air Mail - The 1978 version of the helicopter appears in the mission where it is used by a drugs mule, dropping crate packages from its rear bay.
- Riding Shotgun - Upon crossing the Queensboro Bridge, an enemy helicopter pursues the mission truck.
- Corrigan - The 2006 rendition of the helicopter appears in Corrigan, where it is used to flee Corrigan from his safehouse in New Jersey.
- The 3D render of the helicopter appears in the final cutscene of the mission Corrigan, becoming one of the most notable scenes of the game.