Qingdao Jiutian International Flight Academy signed a deal with Beechcraft Corp. at ABACE on Tuesday to purchase a King Air C90GTx. The twin turboprop, which will be used to train Chinese pilots, is due to be delivered in October, with Qingdao becoming the first private training academy in China to operate a King Air. “The C90GTx allows students to learn how to fly in a large, multiengine, pressurized, complex aircraft while offering flight schools the benefits of economical turboprop flight instruction in a very rugged and proven airframe,” Beechcraft said.
Beechcraft King Air
The Beechcraft King Air turboprop fleet has surpassed 60 million flight hours, the Wichita-based aircraft manufacturer announced today at the Sun ’n Fun Fly-in in Lakeland, Fla. More than 7,000 King Airs are currently flying in 127 countries around the world, including all branches of the U.S. military. “We greatly value the global experience of our customers and use it to drive major and minor product improvements in the King Air line,” said company executive vice president of sales and marketing Shawn Vick.
The Beechcraft King Air turboprop fleet has surpassed 60 million flight hours, the Wichita-based aircraft manufacturer announced today at the Sun ’n Fun Fly-in in Lakeland, Fla. More than 7,000 King Airs are in operation in 127 countries, including all branches of the U.S. military.
Raisbeck/Hartzell swept-blade “turbofan propellers” entered service this month on a King Air B200. This aircraft is also the first installation of the Epic Platinum Performance Package with the new swept-blade props.
While the business aviation industry greets each morsel of positive economic news with cautious optimism, continuing financial indecision made 2012 another depressed year for turbine aircraft deliveries, according to the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA), which released its year-end delivery totals last month. Last year general aviation reached a milestone of sorts, according to GAMA chairman Brad Mottier. For the first time, he noted, shipments to North American buyers in all three airplane segments–jets, turboprops and pistons–dipped to 50 percent.
Hawker Beechcraft, which is displaying a King Air 350i this week at Aero India in Bangalore, continues to lead the turboprop market segment in India. Citing JetNet data, the company said 82 percent of the new turboprop business aircraft delivered into India from 2002 to 2011 were King Airs, while 83 percent of the total fleet of registered business turboprops in the country are King Airs. It has also cornered the turboprop market for state and federal organizations in India, with these operators flying more than 20 King Airs in the country.
This week at the NBAA Schedulers & Dispatchers Conference, Fargo Jet Center announced it will establish a new FBO at Sloulin Field International Airport in Williston, N.D. The Williston Jet Center will offer aircraft fueling, aircraft maintenance, flight instruction, aircraft charter management and aircraft sales. Construction of the new 6,400 sq. ft. passenger facility and a fuel farm is expected to begin in March, and it should be operational by early summer.
To help build sales momentum as it prepares to emerge from bankruptcy protection, Hawker Beechcraft is offering a free upgrade to the Rockwell Collins Pro Line Fusion avionics suite for customers who purchase a King Air 250 or 350i by February 28. The Fusion system features touchscreen primary and multifunction flight displays, as well as wireless updates of all flight-related databases and wireless downloading of maintenance information. According to Hawker Beechcraft, the upgrade also comes standard with synthetic vision and a graphical flight management system.
Eight European operators have combined to form a new charter alliance called AirClub. The partnership, announced on December 12, brings together ACM Air Charter, Air Alsie, Air Hamburg, Corporatejets, Flyinggroup, GlobeAir, Masterjet and PrivatAir. Among them they operate 106 aircraft, covering a wide spectrum of range and payload capabilities, from the Beechcraft King Air to a Boeing 757.
A Beechcraft King Air E90 crashed 20 miles southeast of Amarillo, Texas, at about 6 p.m. local time on December 14. The aircraft had departed Rick Husband Amarillo International (AMA) Airport about 10 minutes earlier into what were reported as high winds. Both occupants were killed and the aircraft was destroyed after it hit terrain.