PiperJet Deliveries Delayed Six Months to Mid-2013
Vero Beach, Fla.-based Piper Aircraft on Tuesday said it is delaying first deliveries of the single-engine PiperJet from the fourth quarter of 2012 until the second quarter of 2013. “Our successful efforts to engage a strategic, long-term ownership group coincided with a drastically weakened business environment,” Piper president John Becker wrote in a letter sent to PiperJet customers this week. “This forced us to temporarily redirect resources from the jet, but the end result is that we are today a better company with a brighter future.” To compensate for the delay, Piper favorably changed contract terms for PiperJet customers, including maintaining the price at $2.19 million and changing the CPI escalator date from Oct. 1, 2007, to the beginning of this month. Meanwhile, flight testing of the proof-of-concept PiperJet is continuing, with the aircraft already logging more than 230 hours to date. Piper has recently started testing stall speeds and stall handling characteristics with the proof-of-concept airplane. Last week at the NBAA Convention, the company announced that the PiperJet would be equipped with the new Garmin G3000 touchscreen avionics system.