Thursday, 30 September 2010

Jet lust

It seems that pilots aren't the only people with a touch of jet lust. Despite the less than positive economic situation, and the fact that none of the business jet manufacturers are exactly booming, it looks like we may be getting a couple of new players in the market...

First to break cover is Daher-Socata, manufacturers of the TBM850. The French company has teamed up with Allied Aviation Technologies to continue development of the Grob SPn jet. When Grob declared bankruptcy, AAT acquired some of the assets, including the remaining development airframes and the IP.

The second manufacturer planning a move into the jet league is Pilatus. To be fair, the Swiss company hasn't actually said that they're getting into the jet market, and I'm sure that they'd deny it if you asked, this space...

Thanks to Rod Simpson for the picture

Monday, 27 September 2010

Times still tough for manufacturers

Times are still very tough out there in the world of GA manufacturing.

A few days ago Cessna announced a further 700 job cuts, Hawker Beechcraft laid off 350 and today Piper let 60 employees go.

Wichita and Vero Beach are not great places to be for aircraft workers. I doubt that Wiener Neustadt (Diamond) and Duluth (Cirrus) are faring a great deal better. Those companies supplying the OEMs - Continental, Lycoming, Garmin etc. - will also be feeling the pain.

Things will undoubtedly get better, but no-one is counting on a very quick recovery.