As the fleet of PC-12s approaches 1,200 worldwide, with approximately 70 percent of them in the U.S., Pilatus Aircraft is expanding its service network to meet the demand for customer support. The company recently named Northern Air, based at Gerald Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids, Mich., as a satellite service center under the sales and service region managed by Londonderry, N.H.-based Pro Star Aviation. Million Air Houston was also added as a satellite service center under Tempus Aircraft Sales and Service of Englewood, Colo.
One of the three PC-7 Mark II trainers that Pilatus has delivered to the Indian air force (IAF) was on display at Aero India. It was assembled at the IAF Academy in Hyderabad, and shown in Pilatus corporate livery with Indian air force insignia.
Pilatus is scheduled to deliver 14 aircraft by June, so that the first squadron can be formed and begin pilot training. All 75 aircraft on order are slated for delivery by the end of 2015. A follow-on order for 37 is expected. The PC-7 Mark II is replacing aging HAL HPT-32 Deepaks, which are suffering from engine and other failures.
The U.S. Bankruptcy Court issued an order on Monday authorizing Hawker Beechcraft to assume an earlier agreement with Pilatus Aircraft, resolving a claim by the Swiss OEM against the Wichita aircraft manufacturer. Pilatus had alleged that Hawker Beechcraft continued to build and deliver T-6 trainers before and following the May bankruptcy filing without paying royalties on intellectual property in production of the aircraft. The T-6 and AT-6 are both based on a Pilatus design.
Markus Bucher will take over as the new CEO and chairman of the executive board at Pilatus Aircraft, effective January 1. He will take over from Oscar Schwenk, who will remain as chairman of the board of directors. Bucher is a 25-year veteran at Pilatus, working in production logistics, sales and customer service and additional management experience in the company’s aircraft assembly and maintenance units. Schwenk will continue to head up the senior project management of the PC-24 twinjet program, Pilatus said.
There are milestones and there are milestones in aviation. For Pilatus delivery pilot Roger Engel, Oct. 16, 2012, the completion day of his last delivery flight for Pilatus Business Aircraft will always be remembered as a happy milestone. Pilatus vice president of marketing Tom Aniello made sure that Engel received a traditional waterjet salute from the Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport rire and rescue department at the completion of his final, and coincidentally, 200th unremarkable delivery to the company.
In response to a request by Hawker Beechcraft seeking a 120-day extension of the exclusive period during which only the company can file a reorganization plan, a judge in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York today agreed to maintain exclusivity through the end of February.
The Qatar Emiri Air Force (QEAF) selected Pilatus to provide a complete pilot training system based on the PC-21 turboprop trainer. The package will include ground-based training devices and extensive logistics support and maintenance. The newly established QEAF air academy will receive the first of 24 aircraft in 2014 so that training can start in mid-2015. Pilatus has signed a long-term performance-based support contract.
Pilatus Aircraft confirmed that the Indian Air Force (IAF) has chosen the Pilatus PC-7 Mk II as its new basic trainer. The Swiss company values the contract, signed on May 24, at more than $525 million. It includes 75 aircraft, an integrated ground-based training system and logistics support. Deliveries will begin in the last quarter of this year.
Pilatus Aircraft has appointed Air Charter Services (ACSPL) as its official PC-12 sales and service center in India. The designation makes ACSPL responsible for India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Burma and Thailand. The New Delhi-based facility will manage aircraft sales and carry out all aspects of PC-12 maintenance and warranty work. “Semoun Jolly, director of ACSPL, already owns three PC-12s. He knows and appreciates the aircraft’s outstanding flexibility and flying credentials,” said Fred Muggli, head of PC-12 sales and marketing at Pilatus.
The benefits of synthetic vision are available for operators of the Pilatus PC-12 NG. The Honeywell Primus Apex flight deck in the PC-12 NG is designed for single-engine turboprops through light jets, and now with SmartView synthetic vision added, Apex offers the sophistication and utility of Honeywell’s Primus Epic avionics found in much larger aircraft such as the Gulfstream G650 and Dassault Falcon 900EX EASy II.