Our June/July issue features an exciting new digital format! Read about the massive AN-225, the HondaJet Elite bizjet, and a D-Day Dakota. Plus: Learning to fly (again), the CU-47 firefighting helicopter and Exchange Income Corp.
After receiving type certification for its all-new PC-24 Super Versatile Jet last December, Pilatus has delivered twelve aircraft to the United States, Switzerland, Luxembourg, and Southern Africa.
By the end of this year, the company expects 23 PC-24s will be in customer operation.
The global fleet of in-service PC-24s have accumulated 1,200 flight hours, with the fleet leader already clocking up over 620 flight hours.
This aircraft, the first serialized production PC-24, is owned and operated by the U.S. fractional ownership company, PlaneSense.
First customer and pilot feedbacks
George Antoniadis, president and CEO of PlaneSense, said: “Our clients absolutely love the PC-24 and it is a wonderful complement to our expansive fleet of PC-12s. The jet has allowed us to expand our offering with a larger cabin and higher speeds. Its ability to access very short runways allows us to safely reach destinations that other business jets cannot. With that larger choice of runways and higher cruise speed, we can significantly reduce point-to-point travel time, a true game changer. We can’t wait to add more PC-24s to meet our clients’ demands.”
The Authorized Pilatus Centre Western Aircraft is the operator of PC-24 serial number 102.
Scott Marshall, chief pilot, provided a pilot’s perspective: “Flying the PC-24 is an absolute thrill. With more than 6,000 flying hours over the last 13 years in Pilatus aircraft–PC-6, PC-12, and now PC-24–it is truly a pilot’s airplane. The ergonomic cockpit layout paired with the ACE integrated avionics suite shows that Pilatus, as always, developed this aircraft with the pilot in mind. Whether hand flying in cruise or on approach, the aircraft is one of the most stable and forgiving that I have ever flown. With the long standing tradition of innovation, craftsmanship and reliability, Pilatus has definitely exceeded my own lofty expectations.”
Post certification activities well in progress
Pilatus continues to conduct post-certification testing on several items to expand the PC-24’s operational capabilities, including steep approach, air ambulance interiors, and operation on unpaved runways.
To date, more than 150 take-offs and landings have been conducted on dirt, grass, and gravel surfaces in Switzerland, Canada, Italy, and the United Kingdom. Pilatus expects to receive certification for operation from these surfaces before end of this year.
Full coverage with CrystalCare
Most PC-24 customers are also subscribing to CrystalCare, Pilatus’ new comprehensive, nose-to-tail maintenance support program. For a fixed hourly and monthly fee, customers are covered for all scheduled and unscheduled maintenance events, parts, avionics, engines, inspection, troubleshooting and repair work, shipping, AOG recovery, and even consumables.
Ignaz Gretener, VP General Aviation for Pilatus, stated: “Being ranked number one in customer service by PC-12 operators for 17 consecutive years has set the service expectations high for Pilatus entering the business jet market. Our goal is to continue expanding our services by raising the bar even higher in terms of customer support. Our first step on that journey with the PC-24 is the introduction of CrystalCare, the most comprehensive guaranteed maintenance programme in the industry.”
Markus Bucher, CEO of Pilatus, continued: “We are very pleased with how well the PC-24’s entry-into-service program has progressed over the past nine months. Customer feedback has been great, in both the things they like and those things they would like us to improve.
Overall, though, our strategy to bring a modern, unique, and capable new aircraft into this market segment has been met with an overwhelmingly positive response from current customers and those operating other brands of business jets.”
PC-24 flies to NBAA-BACE
The PC-24 will be on display at Pilatus’ static exhibit during the National Business Aviation Association’s annual convention and exhibition in Orlando, Florida, Oct. 16 to 18.
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