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Thu, May 09, 2024

Cessna SkyCourier Certified in Australia

New Twin Turboprop Sees Acceptance Abroad

Cessna's brand-new regional turboprop, the SkyCourier, has received type certification from the Australia Certification & Accreditation Service Agency (ACASA).

It's pretty well expected that the type will be welcomed over there, given the limitless expanse of rugged, harsh Outback terrain. The promising model even snagged its first order, having inked its first Australian deal at this year's Singapore Airshow. Far-flung rural communities will find the high-wing, fixed-gear twin a solid addition to a relatively limited list of niche aircraft. For years, the Twin Otter was known as the go-to for the higher end of rural turboprop operations, with Cessna's own C-208 Caravan slotting in on the single-engine side of things. The Twin Otter will remain a potent contender against the SkyCourier...that is, if customers can remember who to buy them from. A back-and-forth has sent the Twin Otter between the De Havilland and Viking Air brands, creating a bit of confusion following 50 years of production and a handful of model designations. It may be refreshing for some fleet managers to just opt for a good old Cessna, simple and reliable, instead of untangling exactly which version of a dozen aged designs is the best of breed.

The SkyCourier, on the other hand, will sport all the modern accouterments expected of a modern aircraft, with more than a few finishing touches that will make it an even more productive aircraft for commercial operators. Standard configuration will allow 19 passengers, or a cargo variant sporting a trio of LD3-sized unit loading devices. Modern glass panel avionics, single-point fueling, and gravel operations kits are just among the list of little niceties that make the new C-408 such a handy design for operators today. For now, it's off to a pretty good start stateside, with 30+ delivered and a few dozen more to deliver to launch customer FedEx. 

"The SkyCourier's incredible performance makes it a reliable business tool for customers all over the world," said Lannie O'Bannion, senior vice president, Global Sales and Flight Operations. "This certification marks yet another milestone in the SkyCourier program. With the ability to load, fly, unload and repeat -- along with low operating costs and maximum cabin flexibility -- the SkyCourier is a game-changer in reaching remote destinations."

FMI: www.cessna.txtav.com

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