Industry Still Flying High

 - November 22, 2006, 4:50 AM

Coming off an all-time record for billings and a four-year high in new turbine airplane deliveries in 2005, the industry continued flying high in the first-quarter of this year. “Manufacturers have recorded the highest first quarter billings in history,” according to General Aviation Manufacturers Association figures released Friday. OEMs delivered 189 business jets and 47 business turboprops, a 36 and 34 percent increase, respectively, over the 139 jets and 35 turboprops shipped in the first quarter of last year. Cessna, as usual, delivered the most jets of any one manufacturer (66), followed by Bombardier (56). Raytheon Aircraft shipments jumped 69 percent to 22 jets. “These positive figures, if sustained, are an indication that the year will be a solid one for general aviation,” said GAMA president and CEO Pete Bunce. “All segments of the general aviation manufacturing industry are continuing to increase at strong levels.”