New Six-Seat Aircraft To Compete Directly With Very Light
EADS Socata has
unveiled the newest member of its TBM family – the six-seat
TBM 850 pressurized single-engined turboprop. The TBM 850 builds on
the success of the TBM 700 business aircraft and offers owners and
pilots a maximum cruise speed of 320 KTAS at FL260 in ISA
conditions. This will give TBM 850 operators the advantage of the
cruising speeds typical of light jets, with the economical direct
operating costs of a single-engined turboprop.
The TBM 850 is already certified by EASA (the European
airworthiness authority), with FAA certification expected soon.
Deliveries will begin early in 2006. The new aircraft will be
available via EADS Socata’s existing direct sales and
distribution network, and will be supported by its extensive
worldwide network of service centers.
Base price of the TBM 850 is set at $2,576,930 in 2006. A
version with typical customer options and equipped for RVSM
(Reduced Vertical Separation Minimum) operation will list at
“The TBM 850 is the fruit of our close relationship with
TBM customers. We listened to their requests to make the fastest
aircraft in its class even faster, and the result is the TBM 850
– which we believe is the ultimate personal aircraft,”
said EADS Socata Chairman and CEO Stéphane Mayer.
"Jet-like cruise speeds, improved climb and ‘hot and
high’ performance are coupled with low direct operating
costs, insurability and proven technology. These attributes are
sure to make the TBM 850 a success with both existing and new
“We believe the
TBM 850 will help us to strengthen our market position in business
and private aviation, and this is demonstrated by the fact that
more than two-thirds of next year’s production has been sold
before the first TBM 850 aircraft leaves the production line. The
TBM 850 is also a good example of EADS’ global sourcing
strategy with over 70% of its bill of materials originating in
North America, and more than 80% of TBM aircraft sales to the U.S.
market,” Mayer added.
Hot and high performance, (often a weakness for turboprops and
light jets) is not an issue for the TBM 850. As an example, at an
altitude of FL310 in ISA +20°C conditions, the TBM 850’s
cruise performance increases by more than 55 knots over the TBM 700
C2 (EADS Socata’s current flagship aircraft).
All-important climb performance also is substantially improved
over typical turboprops. The TBM 850’s time-to-climb is a
mere 15 minutes to an altitude of FL260 (almost 25% faster than the
TBM 700 C2), and 20 minutes to its service ceiling of FL310 at
The TBM 850 offers jet performance and excellent short-field
characteristics without exposing owners and pilots to the huge leap
in direct operating costs, time-consuming transition training, and
the insurance premiums associated with the emerging category of
light jets. In addition, the TBM 850 benefits directly from the 15
years of proven experience gained with the TBM 700.
However, these performance improvements do not detract from the
TBM 850’s long-range cruise capabilities. Owners selecting
the long range cruise power setting in an RVSM-equipped TBM 850
will be able to fly direct from Minneapolis to Miami (while most
light jets will need to make an intermediate fuel stop). Even at
long-range (economy) cruise, the TBM 850 offers cruise speeds of
more than 250 KTAS at FL310 – which is as fast as the maximum
cruise speed of some competing single-engine turboprops at similar
The powerplant of the TBM 850 is Pratt & Whitney
Canada’s PT6A-66D. The PT6A-66D delivers 1,825 eshp
flat-rated to 850 shp for the TBM 850. Its single-crystal
compressor turbine blades enable higher operating temperatures and,
coupled with a new first-stage compressor design, gives the TBM 850
its enhanced high-altitude performance.