Pilatus scored a double first at EBACE with the launch of its first business jet - the PC-24 - and a new self-styled aircraft category dubbed the "super versatile jet" (SVJ).
Pilatus chairman Oscar Schwenk says the PC-24 is the only aircraft "combining the versatility of a turboprop with the cabin size of a medium light jet, and the performance of a light jet".
He adds: "The aircraft simply doesn't fit into any of the existing business jet categories. That's why we had to create a new one."
Pilatus began working on the PC-24 programme about two years ago, following customer demand for an aircraft that complements its PC-12 single-engined turboprop. "Everything we've learned from the experience of our PC-12 operators is woven into the DNA of the PC-24," says Schwenk.
The $9 million twinjet has a take-off distance of 2,690ft (820m) and a landing distance of 2,525ft, enabling it to operate from unpaved runways and grass strips. "This gives the aircraft access to more than 21,000 airports worldwide - "10% more than competing jets," Schwenk says. "It can land on anything apart from water."
The Williams FJ44-4A-powered PC-24 will have range with six passengers of 3,330km (1,800nm) and a cruise speed of 425kt (786km/h). The PC-24 will include Pilatus's advanced cockpit environment - developed in partnership with Honeywell - and featuring a synthetic vision system, autothrottle, TCAS II, and graphical flight planning.
The PC-24 also features a large cargo door and a pressurised in-flight baggage compartment.
The first of three prototypes will be rolled out in the third quarter of 2014, leading to first flight at the end of that year. Certification and service entry is targeted for 2017, says Schwenk.
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