BAN's World GazetteerSwitzerland
With almost 2,000 PC-12s delivered, the global fleet of the Pilatus single-engine turboprop has officially accumulated more than 10 million flight hours. The fleet leader, based in Canada, has flown more than 35,000 hours, while 71 PC-12s have logged over 20,000 hours of flight time. As a whole, the PC-12 fleet has recorded more than 9.3 million landings, with four aircraft reporting more than 50,000 landings.
“When the PC-12 was launched, this milestone seemed light-years away in the future,” says Ignaz Gretener, vice president of Pilatus' business aviation division. “You must give credit to the engineers who designed this incredibly robust airframe, the production team that builds outstanding quality into each unit, the sales team that found so many markets eager to adopt this versatile aircraft and the support team so dedicated to keeping them in the air. We are especially grateful to our ownership base for trusting in Pilatus and helping us continuously improve the PC-12 so that it leads the market in sales year after year.”
Pilatus delivered 80 new PC-12s in 2022 and plans to increase production to meet demand in 2023. The current model, the PC-12 NGX, is the third major variant of the type and differs significantly from the original PC-12. Over the history of PC-12 deliveries, engine power and speed have been increased, new executive cabin interiors have been introduced, gross weight and payload capacity were increased and in 2019 it became the first business turboprop to incorporate Pratt & Whitney's innovative electronic propeller and engine control system (EPECS) for its steadfastly reliable PT6 powerplant.
Pilatus chief executive officer Markus Bucher states: “The PC-12's past, present and future success boils down to its appeal to a wide range of operations, its solid reliability and its proven outstanding safety record. As an additional benefit, these attributes have resulted in PC-12 owners enjoying one of the highest levels of value retention among all business aircraft.”
The PC-12 is currently being utilised by corporate flight departments, individual owner-operators, fractional and charter companies, air ambulance service providers and in special mission roles at the local, state and national levels. The aircraft's large cabin, standard cargo door, docile handling characteristics and low operating costs offer significant appeal to nearly any type of operation.
With sustainability near the top of nearly every business aircraft operator's priority list, the fuel efficiency of the PC-12 offers immediate and major reductions in carbon emissions as compared to midsize and larger business jets not optimised for all missions. Pilatus officials note that the global network of Pilatus sales teams are receiving increased interest in the PC-12 from flight departments looking for ways to continue to support their operational requirements with much greater efficiency.
Gretener concludes: “The secret to the PC-12's success is really no secret at all. We continuously listen to our customers and strive to provide them with features, capabilities and technologies to support the missions that are critical to them. With each aircraft and every individual owner and operator of a Pilatus aircraft, our goal is to become incrementally better.”