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Sun, Oct 31, 2004

Interesting Numbers Revealed In GAMA's 3Q Stats

Aero-Analysis by ANN Editor-In-Chief, Jim Campbell

On Thursday, GAMA announced that GA "continued a strong recovery through the third quarter of 2004. Industry billings were up 15.9 percent to $7.8 billion for the first nine months of 2004, while total units rose 7.7 percent to 1,928."

It was good news, but closer examination of some of the more remarkable numbers reveals even more to feel good about... as a number of up and coming single-engine product lines continue to take a more prominent role in the GA world.

Cessna Aircraft

Cessna's single engine line continued to rack up respectable sales numbers and the future looks good for this series as the new G1000 offerings excite new sales activity among a highly-respected product line. However; Cirrus is still leading them, among four-seaters, for the year. That is likely to change by the time the year ends because Cessna's production capability far outstrips any of the competition and excitement over the G1000 is feeding the order books nicely. The one thing we don't know is how many of Cessna's "sales" are to dealers (who will inventory them until sold) and how many are to registered end-buyers... a sore point among much of the competition when sales numbers are totaled up. Regardless; Cessna has some good news to crow about and rumors of an "all-new airplane" continue to be heard, with increasing regularity. We do not have specific data about the total value of Cessna's YTD single-engine piston sales.

 Cessna Aircraft Single-Engine Piston

A/C Type

1Q

2Q

3Q

YTD

172 Skyhawk

 8 

12 

3

23

172S Skyhawk

 53

34

43

130

182 Skylane

 20 

5

85

110

182T Skylane

 8  

0

68

76

206 Stationair

 5

7

1

13

206T Stationair

 12

3

3

18

Total S/E Units

106

61

203

370

Cirrus Design

Mind you; no one is crying for Cirrus... who continues to sell EVERYTHING they can build. Unheard of a decade ago, this is THE company everyone watches these days... usually the first to the market with new technologies and doing a marketing job unequaled by any other company... for the moment. Cirrus will probably finish out the year just behind Cessna (unless the Garmin G1000 can't be delivered as fast as Cessna and a number of other vendors want them... a significant concern... this product is VERY hot right now), but doesn't feel as if this is a defeat, if that happens. "We're selling everything we can build and we still have a healthy backlog... we really can't ask for more than that," notes Cirrus CEO Alan Klapmeier. Total value of YTD sales is a staggering $141,869,339.

Cirrus Design Single-Engine Piston    

A/C Type

1Q

2Q

3Q

YTD

Cirrus SRV   

1

0

2

3

Cirrus SR20  

38

2

39

79

Cirrus SR22   

66

127

110

303

Total Units   

105

129

151

385

Diamond Aircraft

This is THE company to watch... with one of the most comprehensive product lines proposed for the next few years (everything from a single-engine two-seater to a diesel twin and a single engine jet), no one has filled out their product line as adeptly or as aggressively as Diamond. Excellent customer service marks are not hurting the matter at all and turning a number of potential sales their way due to excellent word of mouth. The coming introduction of the twin-engine Thielert diesel or Lycoming versions of the DA42 are expected to have an impact on the single-engine numbers, especially among high-performance aircraft as pilots who here-to-fore could not afford or find the value they wanted among current twin offerings finally get what they've been looking for -- a solid high-performance IFR twin for less than $500K. 2004 YTD billings totaled $40,835,000.

Diamond Aircraft Single-Engine Piston

    

A/C Type

1Q

2Q

3Q

YTD

DA20

13

17

11

41

DA40

44

24

72

140

Total Units

57

41

83

181

Lancair Aircraft

What a difference a year makes. Once moribund Lancair, who battled financial woes and a test-flight crash that put the long-awaited Columbia 400 a ways behind schedule, definitely appears to be coming back strong. With the "King Of The Hill" Columbia 400 laying claim to being the fastest bird on the block, Lancair will be able to live off the Columbia 400 for quite a while while a 50% increase in overall production is forecast for  2005. We predict that they will also be able to sell everything that they can build for quite a while. With additional attention being paid to marketing, aggressive work on much-asked-for options (especially air conditioning, weather, and onboard charts) and the financial battles behind them, Lancair is poised to be a prominent player for the foreseeable future... and if a much-rumored, pressurized, version of the Columbia shows up within the next few years, this product line could lead the high-performance piston game for a considerable period of time.  

Lancair Aircraft Single-Engine Piston

    

A/C Type

1Q

2Q

3Q

YTD

Columbia 350

17

11

0

28

Columbia 400  

0

9

17

26

Total Units

17

20

17

54

Mooney Aircraft

Also back from the grave is Mooney Aircraft, who has jumped fully on the G1000 bandwagon and stirred up the pot recently with solid financing packages and some renewed marketing. A new CEO is in place now, and upcoming production changes are expected to further enhance this company's standing in the GA world. A strong parts business for previously manufactured Mooneys, and a loyal following among previous Mooney owners bodes well for the company but aggressive new thinking and offerings may allow Mooney to assume a position near the head of the pack once again... though it's likely to be a slower process for Mooney than for some of their competitors. 2004 YTD sales total $7,525,775.

Mooney Aircraft Single-Engine Piston

A/C Type

1Q

2Q

3Q

YTD

M20M Bravo DX

3

1

1

5

M20R Ovation2 DX   

5

4

3

12

Total Units 

4

17

New Piper Aircraft

Recent gains in market share, enhanced by the introduction of the Avidyne Entegra EFIS line to a number of Piper airframes, may be eclipsed somewhat due to temporary production problems induced by hurricane damage over the last few months. Still; excellent production facilities and capabilities put Piper in a solid position to capitalize on the additional activity these updated airframes will see on the sales front thanks to the upgraded panels. Particularly strong is Piper's position when it comes to six-place airframes, where their only significant competition comes from Cessna. Specific 2004 YTD sales numbers for the single-engine line were not received.

New Piper Aircraft Single-Engine Piston

    

A/C Type

1Q

2Q

3Q

YTD

PA-28-161 Warrior III   

7

6

4

17

PA-28-181 Archer III   

7

4

1

12

PA-28R-201 Arrow   

3

5

3

11

PA-32R-301 Saratoga II HP 

0

4

5

9

PA-32R-301T Saratoga II TC 

6

14

8

28

PA-32-301FT Piper 6X   

9

7

7

23

PA-32-301XTC Piper 6XT 

3

3

12

Total S/E Units

38

43

31

112

Summary

While the preceding summaries only touch upon most of the more notable companies doing business in the GA community, it is by no means complete. The total numbers for the year 2004, domestically and internationally, does reflect a solid growth pattern that is expected to continue through 2005-06... from there, though, the crystal ball gets a little fuzzier... especially as the first generation of very light jets starts showing up and stealing sales from all ranks of the GA production schedule. And that's when things get REALLY interesting. We'll keep you updated. 

Airplane Shipments by Type: Manufactured Worldwide

Type

1Q

2Q

3Q

YTD

Single-Engine Piston   

388

363

552

1,303

      

Airplane Shipments by Type: Manufactured USA    

Single-Engine Piston

322

313

462

1,097


FMI: www.gama.org

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