Socata Will Not Build Grob Jet

 - July 26, 2012, 4:25 PM

Daher-Socata announced Tuesday that it will not build the moribund Grob SPn utility jet. Socata, which manufactures the TBM850 turboprop single, had been evaluating the all-composite SPn twinjet since late 2010 as a more economical alternative to a clean-sheet new aircraft program.

The SPn first flew in 2005, but the program stumbled after a prototype suffered structural failure and crashed in 2006. The continuing weight of the program forced Grob Aerospace, historically a glider and primary trainer manufacturer, into insolvency in 2008. The SPn was never certified and the assets of the program and the remaining prototypes were sold to Allied Aviation Technologies.

A Daher-Socata executive said the SPn program is not mature enough to provide substantial cost savings over a totally new design. Daher-Socata CEO Stephane Mayer said his company is continuing to seek development partners for its NTX twin-turboprop program, is entering into an agreement with an unidentified U.S. aircraft manufacturer to build composite parts, and was recently named a subcontractor on the Eurocopter X4 and Dassault Falcon SMS twinjet.

Mayer also announced that the company has received certification for the rapid-change interior of the new TBM850 Elite. The rear seats can be removed and middle-row seats rotated within 30 minutes to triple the airplane’s luggage volume capacity while doubling its maximum luggage weight capacity.

Comments

PlanesPlanesPlanes's picture

What SOCAta has not announced is the new TBM moel Century, they keeping under wrap. Selling the old TBM to poor customers. When they have better avion now, with wingtips, improved avionics, many composite parts, better interior, better performance engine. To debut early 2014. They shoyld be announcing this, not foling clients. Very disappointed customer.

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