Pilatus has revealed the first three customers for its newly-unveiled PC-12NGX: Australian-born HP CEO Dion Weilser, US co-founder of Sprouts Farmers Markets Shon Boney and Brazilian João Carlos Marinho Lutz.
Based on the PC-12 airframe, of which more than 1,700 aircraft have been delivered, Pilatus introduced the third major evolution of the aircraft, named the PC-12 NGX, at this year's NBAA-BACE. Markus Bucher, CEO of Pilatus, revealed the new aircraft at a ceremony with more than 200 guests.
Weisler is the first owner to upgrade from his PC-12 NG to the new NGX: “As an existing, proud and active owner-pilot of a 2017 PC-12 NG, I am amazed by the substantial innovation improvements in what I thought was an impossible aircraft to improve on. I am thrilled to be customer number one for the new PC-12 NGX. Pilatus has done it again; reimagined aviation and taken an already perfect aircraft and magically redefined perfection.”
Shon Boney's will be his fourth PC-12, while João Carlos Marinho Lutz will be the first Brazilian customer to take delivery of the new PC-12 NGX. Currently flying a non-pressurised turboprop, he chose the new Pilatus aircraft, because “only the PC-12 NGX can reach farms in remote places where I need to go and amazing destinations in Brazil with comfort, speed and efficiency.”
The PC-12 NGX features a completely new BMW Designworks interior, larger cabin windows inspired by the PC-24 and fully reclining executive seats. The new Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6 E-Series engine comes with the electronic propeller and engine control. A fully integrated digital autothrottle and new avionics features by Honeywell, including a touch screen controller, emergency descent mode, tactile roll feedback and protection and a low speed propeller quiet mode are just some of the features of the new cockpit environment.
The PC-12 NGX prototype first flew in December 2017. More than 600 hours of testing and certification flying were accumulated in Europe, USA and Canada as Pilatus developed the new aircraft. The PC-12 NGX received certification on Monday 14 October. Pilatus will begin customer deliveries of the new PC-12 NGX early in the second quarter of 2020.