Piper Will Reveal ‘Next Step’ in PiperJet at NBAA
Piper Aircraft has been promoting its new PiperJet in the form of a proof-of-concept aircraft based on the PA-46-500TP Meridian turboprop-single platform. However, officials with the Vero Beach, Fla.-based manufacturer told AIN today that it will appear at the NBAA Convention next month with “the next step” in the evolution of its single-engine very light jet, complete with a full-size mockup. Piper recently announced a deal with Millennium Concepts of Wichita to design and produce for the PiperJet “one of the safest and most reliable seats available for this class of aircraft.” Meanwhile in Vero Beach, Fla., where Piper had increased employment this year to 890 to meet production demands, it made the decision this week to lay off 60 workers, after revising production expectations downward from 200 aircraft this year to 150. Last year Piper delivered 94 airplanes and had reduced its workforce to a low of 540 employees.