Fri, Feb 13, 2004
Still Hanging In There, Despite Small Drop
Turboprop shipments were
down 2.9 percent in 2003, to 272 units. U.S. manufactured
turboprops dropped 12.8 percent from 187 units in 2002 to 163 units
in 2003. While GAMA didn't expand on turboprop-related issues too
much, one can only imagine the rise in jet aircraft is hurting the
Several of the new light-jet models are priced near the cost of
a high-end turboprop, if not lower in some cases. It's hard to
compete with that pricing, given the fact that jets tend to fly
higher, faster and offer a much quieter cabin environment.
However, that did not stop Raytheon from unveiling its 1900
executive transport model last year.
We should point out that turboprops are still popular with some
fractional operators, and the King Air family seems to be leading
that particular niche. Fractional ownership continued to grow in
2003 and the number of individuals and companies in the United
States that own a fractional share of an airplane increased
approximately 6.7 percent last year from 4,232 to 4,515.
The number of airplanes in fractional programs grew just over
6.1 percent in 2003, from 776 to 823.
GAMA member companies are reporting that approximately 10
percent of their total turbine deliveries last year went to
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