Textron Aviation presented this week a full-size Cessna SkyCourier cabin model at the NBAA-BACE fair in Orlando. The mockup displayed in the display shows the aircraft in passenger configuration.
“The Cessna SkyCourier was engineered to be versatile, heavy utilization turboprop with significant payload to undertake a variety of missions,” said Rob Scholl, Textron’s senior vice president of sales and marketing.
The SkyCourier is designed to carry up to 19 passengers in seats with 32 inches (80 cm) spacing. The mockup also features the luggage compartments in the cabin and the cargo area in the rear. The manufacturer also notes that the armchairs will have USB ports for electronic device recharges and large windows.
“Since announcing the Cessna SkyCourier last year, we’ve seen continued interest from operators searching for a modern utility aircraft capable of flexible operations and configurations,” noted Scholl. “Their feedback has enabled us to optimize many of the aircraft’s features, allowing us to deliver a mission-ready platform.”
The SkyCourier is being developed to fulfill essentially the same tasks that are already carried out by the renowned Cessna Caravan, but offering almost twice as much performance. In addition to the passenger version to serve regional aviation, the new twin-engine will also be offered in a cargo-carrying variant with a capacity of up to 6,000 pounds (2,721 kg).
The SkyCourier will be powered by Pratt & Whitney PT6 turbo-propellers, one of the most reliable engines in the aircraft industry and also used in the Caravan. According to the manufacturer, the new aircraft will be able to fly at cruising speed of 200 ktas and travel 1,440 km.
The first SkyCourier flight is scheduled for 2019 and its aviation debut is scheduled for 2020. The first customer of the aircraft will be the FedEx cargo company, which ordered 100 units.