Though largely overshadowed by a heavy military presence, the business aviation sector made its voice heard at last month’s Aero India show in Bangalore (February 6 to 10). Serious obstacles continue to stand in the way of those trying to fulfill bizav’s undoubted potential in this vast emerging market (see box), but this has not deterred the major manufacturers from increasing their presence in India.
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.
Atlantic Aero has received FAA approval to add the Cessna Citation X to its repair station license. The MRO has invested more than $150,000 in new tooling, training and other related expenses to support Citation X certification. The company has a long history working with the type by providing interior updates for Citation X operators, and the addition of the product to Atlantic Aero’s repair license enables the facility to provide maintenance.
Cessna Aircraft sees growing demand in India for both the Caravan and Citation lines, the Wichita-based aircraft manufacturer said this week at Aero India, where it is displaying a Caravan and Citation Mustang. The company believes that applications for business aircraft there will increase in response to anticipated government reforms intended to improve infrastructure and free up market access.
Cessna sees growing demand in India for both its Caravan and Citation families. The U.S. manufacturer believes that business applications for the aircraft will increase in response to anticipated government reforms intended to improve infrastructure and free up market access.
Astronics’ Max-Viz 600 enhanced vision system has received a Cessna Aircraft Service Bulletin for retrofit installation in recently delivered Cessna Skyhawks, Skylanes and Stationairs. The retrofit, available from Cessna for retrofit by Cessna-authorized service centers, is approved by the FAA and EASA. The Max-Viz 600 and its higher-end sibling, the Model 1500, are already STC’d for a long list of business jets and turboprops, as well as helicopters.
“No traditional business jet will take you closer to the speed of sound,” promises Gulfstream in an announcement about its recently certified G650, which boasts a maximum velocity of Mach 0.925.
Cessna Aircraft and Bell Helicopter parent company Textron yesterday reported a $1 billion increase in revenues, to $12.237 billion, last year, but it was the performance at Bell that contributed most to this gain. Manufacturing profits also rose by more than $140 million, to $1.07 billion, again mostly due to the helicopter manufacturer.
Former Cessna chairman and CEO Jack Pelton is among a half-dozen veteran business and military aviation executives who have joined forces to offer remanufactured turbine-powered aircraft to the aviation and defense industries. The newly formed company, The Aviation Alliance, also announced its first business aviation offering yesterday: the Excalibur 421.
Bell Helicopter Asia, Bell’s maintenance service facility in Singapore, received Part 145 approval from the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore. This certification allows the company to repair, complete, maintain and customize Bell helicopters in Asia. The 165,000-sq-ft facility opened its doors six months ago in partnership with sister company Cessna Aircraft.