Latest In Cessna's Line Of Big Turboprops
Cessna is at Oshkosh, but much of the company's focus is on the its big airplanes rather than the piston singles. On Monday, they announced the Cessna Grand Caravan EX, with increased horsepower (HP) which improves the aircraft's performance in current mission profiles and allows for missions to extend into regions of the world with higher altitudes and higher temperatures.
Powered by the new Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-140 engine, the available power in the Grand Caravan EX has increased almost 25 percent, from 675 HP to 867 HP. This improvement boosts the aircraft's performance, including a 350 foot reduction in takeoff roll, a 20 percent improvement in the rate of climb, and a 10-12 knot cruise speed improvement over average.
"We listened carefully to our customers when designing the EX, and we think they will be pleased with the outcome," said Lannie O'Bannion, Cessna business leader for the Caravan. "The Grand Caravan EX will climb faster, and have the power and capacity to take on missions in parts of the world with higher elevations and higher temperatures while still delivering on utility. It's what the Caravan has always been about, and the new enhancements make the Grand Caravan EX an indispensable tool for customers who operate in diverse areas of the world."
"We anticipate continued success for the Caravan in business and personal use," continued O'Bannion. "The Caravan has proven to be an incredibly reliable and versatile aircraft. This significant increase in performance not only improves performance in current operations, it will make the Grand Caravan EX a fantastic solution for customers and operations in new markets and remote locations. Simply put, this aircraft places more of the world within reach."
The EX is the latest example of Cessna's efforts to place more innovative products in the aviation marketplace. For the first time since the Grand Caravan was introduced in 1994, the Grand Caravan EX can be modified for amphibious missions with floats provided by Wipaire, Inc. The avionics suite will remain the proven Garmin G1000, the executive "Oasis" interior will be available for the EX, and exterior lights are being moved to longer-life LEDs. "We kept the customer in mind throughout the entire development process on this aircraft," O'Bannion said. "While providing more range and power, we have also delivered a new product that will have a minimal impact on direct operating costs."
Entry into service for the Grand Caravan EX is expected to be in the fourth quarter 2012