Mountain Lion Aviation of Orlando, Florida, has become the first operator to use the Daher TBM 930 for commercial missions.
Since acquiring the type last year, the company has already accumulated 430 hours across 300 commercial flights, carrying 475 passengers.
Mountain Lion is based at California's Truckee Tahoe airport and was created as a charter operator and flight school. Its location in the Sierra Nevada Mountains near Lake Tahoe has made it a hub for technology sector executives, entrepreneurs, business owners and other professionals who live, visit or own a second home in the Truckee Tahoe region, on the border between California and Nevada.
By introducing the TBM 930, the operator is targeting a high value customer base that seeks swift transportation and wants to avoid California's notorious road traffic.
“The TBM 930 is a unique aircraft: it is fast and cost-efficient, perfect for our activity, which we describe as being a 'mobility solution' provider with full transportation services from door-to-door,” explains CEO Jim Wilkinson. “Most of our flying activity is on-demand for elite business leaders, and the TBM 930 is the perfect aircraft for these missions.”
Daher senior VP Nicolas Chabbert adds: “This charter introduction from Mountain Lion Aviation is a clear indication that our very fast turboprop has an important role to play in the point-to-point air charter market.”
In addition to US commercial services, where numerous TBMs perform charters under FAA Part 135 certification, the Daher brand is expanding worldwide including to Europe, which last year approved commercial single engine turbine operations.
As of today, a total of 910 TBM aircraft have been delivered to international owners and operators, with the global fleet accumulating some 1.6 million flight hours. TBM 900 series aircraft have already received 266 orders since their launch, with 248 delivered through October 1, 2018. They are built by Daher on its industrial site at the airport of Tarbes-Lourdes-Pyrenees (Hautes Pyrenees), France.