China Aviation Industry General Aircraft (Caiga) selected GE Aviation’s H85 turboprop engine to power its new Primus 150. Set to be the first purpose-built executive turboprop single built in China, the Primus 150 is a pressurized five-seater with an all-composite carbon-fiber airframe. No certification timeline was available at press time.
This will be the first application for the 850-shp H85, which is awaiting EASA certification. The engine is derived from GE’s existing H80 turboprop (itself an upgraded Walter M601), which recently entered service on the Thrush 510G ag aircraft.
GE and Caiga have signed an agreement to jointly develop engine service and support capability for Primus 150 operators in China. The H85 will be manufactured at GE Aviation’s facility in the Czech Republic, which is currently ramping up production of the H80.
Caiga, a subsidiary of China’s Avic and part of the Comac group, acquired Duluth, Minn.-based Cirrus Aircraft last year. The company also purchased most of Epic Aircraft in 2010, and the Primus 150 looks strikingly similar to the all-composite Epic LT turboprop single.