Home' Asian Aviation : AAV March 2010 Contents 14 Asia nAviation | MARCH 2010
Piper Aircraft aims to become one of the top
two g eneral aviation (GA) manufacturers in
the world within the next five years, following
its acquisition last year by Singapore-based corporate
finance and investment management company
The Asia-Pacific market is a high priority for the
manufacturer, which has already established Piper
Aircraft Asia in Brunei and plans to establish a flight
training academy in the same country.
Piper was also one of few manufacturers announcing
orders at the Singapore show, with the Australian
Airline Pilot Academy (AAPA), the sister company
to Australian regional airline Rex, ordering eight
Warriors and two Seminoles. The order will expand
AAPA’s Piper fleet to 20 aircraft – 16 Warriors and
The sale was just one of many the company expects
to announce in the weeks and months ahead, says
President and Chief Executive Officer Kevin Gould.
“Asia is an important market to use, with a willingness
to adopt new technolog y. It’s a perfect market for us
and we plan to leverage our Asian connection,” Gould
Piper Aircraft Asia was established in Brunei
Darussalam last December, headed by managing
director Mary Messuti. The company plans to set up a
major sales and ser vice operation, covering Australia,
the Pacific Rim, China and other regions to capture
growing demand for GA aircraft in the region. In
the first stage of establishing its sales operation in the
region, the company appointed Allan Bligh as vice-
president of marketing for Australia .
Piper Aircraft Asia is currently evaluating responses
to a request for proposals on a joint-venture flight
training academy, to be established in Brunei. A
decision on a partner is expe cted in six to nine months,
Piper ’s entry for the light sport aircraft segment, the
PiperSport, made its debut at the Singapore show. The
PiperSport is manufactured by Czech Sport Aircraft
and distributed through master distributor PiperSport
Distribution. First deliveries are scheduled for April.
The aircraft features a climb rate of 1,200ft per
minute and is capable of a maximum cruise speed of
138 miles per hour and an altitude of 10,000ft. It has
a gross weight of 1,320lb and 600lb of useful load. The
aircraft can run on premium unleaded automotive
fuel, with its 30 gallon fuel capacity giving it a range
The aircraft is available in three models, all of which
are powered by a 100hp Rotax 912 engine and feature
an aircraft parachute recovery system.
Piper is consdiering further expansion of its
product line. The manufacturer is already working
on the new PiperJet which will come to market in
2013, and says it is also working on “a number of
other product area s”. ●
Singapore Show Report
Piper Aircraft has big plans for Asia
Mitsubishi Aircraft is planning a critical
design review to freeze the design of the
Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ) by the
end of this northern summer.
At the same time, the manufacturer is in “very
detailed, serious talks” with several potential
customers, according to Junichi Miyakawa, executive
The programme is on schedule, says Miyakawa.
The preliminar y design review was completed last
year, the aircraft’s aerodynamic shape is frozen and
the sizing of major structural elements has been
completed, he says.
The programme is on track to achieve its major
targets, with major systems such as avionics and
hydraulics already designed, he adds. All major
partners have been selected and development of the
aircraft’s Pratt & Whitney PurePower PW1000G
engine is prog ressing well, with more than 400 hours
of testing completed.
The aircraft’s fi rst flight is scheduled for 2012,
with deliveries beginning in 2014. The manufacturer
will certificate the 88-seat MRJ90 first, followed by
the 76-seat MRJ70. The 100-seat MRJ100X has
also been added to the family following customer
interest, although launch of the stretch is still subject
to demand and a business case, Miyakawa says. “ The
MRJ100X is still a plan at this stage,” he stresses.
To date, Mitsubishi has booked 15 firm MRJ90
orders with 10 options from All Nippon Airways
(ANA), and 50 firm plus 50 options from US
carrier Trans States Holding s. The manufacturer is
confident of future orders from operators in Asia,
Europe and the United States. Serious discussions
are ongoing with several potential customers, and
some of the interest, particularly in Europe, focuses
on the MRJ100X.
Mitsubishi expects the MRJ to be a “game-
changer” in terms of environmental impact,
passenger comfort and efficiency. The aircraft will
meet ICAO Chapter 4 noise standards with more
than a 15EPNdB margin and will meet future
environmental requirements, Miyakawa says.
The MRJ90’s noise margin will be 52 percent
lower than the competing Embraer E-190 and the
new aircraft will also be 15 decibels quieter. Carbon
dioxide emissions will be significantly lower, the
It will also have the widest and highest cabin in its
class and the largest overhead bins. ●
First deliveries of the PiperSport are scheduled for April.
7/03/10 12:08 PM
7/03/10 12:08 PM
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