Pilatus introduced its very first jet to the public amongst much fanfare by trading in a modern day tug in favor of a the more time tested beast of burden. In honor of the Swiss National Day, traditional cultural displays were included among the festivities surrounding the release of the PC-24.
Riding on the coattails of the wildly successful PC-12 single engine turboprop, the PC-24 aims to bring the versatility of a turboprop with the cabin size of a medium-light jet, and the performance of a light jet. The small, personal jet has been engendered with the "off-road" user in mind offering unprecedented short field performance even on unpaved runways, which the company as dubbed the "Super Versatile Jet."
Some 25,000 spectators were on hand to witness the debut of the Pilatus jet prototype and enjoy the festivities celebrating pride in their countries history and future. A symbolic 24 horses set the stage representing the future of this new airplane as a workhorse. Following the debut was a flyby of every aircraft produced in the 75 year history of the aircraft manufacturer. Festivities also included performances in traditional Swiss garb, flight attendants dancing and a man in a funny hat.
The PC-24 is powered by two Williams FJ-44s, similar to those found on the popular CitationJet. Performance numbers put range at 1,800 nm and a top cruise speed of 425 knots.
The first flight of the 3 prototypes is scheduled for the spring of 2015, with deliveries beginning in 2017. At a list price of $8.9 million, orders for over 86 PC-24s have already been placed.
Images courtesy Pilatus
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