Daher-Socata unveiled the latest iteration of its turboprop single, the TBM 900, at its headquarters in Tarbes, France, last week. Derived from the TBM 850, itself a variant of the original TBM 700, the new version offers better efficiency and performance without an increase in fuel consumption or engine power, according to the company.
Winglets, a new tailcone and a five-blade composite propeller with redesigned spinner distinguish the TBM 900 externally from its predecessors. From the nose to the firewall the aircraft has been redesigned to improve engine airflow circulation, through use of a banana-shaped air intake, carbon-fiber cowlings and new exhaust stacks. The new aircraft retains the Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-66D engine found on the TBM 850, as well as its Garmin G1000 avionics suite.
The cockpit includes “enhanced human-machine interface features,” including an ergonomic control yoke and revised cockpit center pedestal that incorporates single-lever power control. Other new features include a revamped electrical system with a 300-amp starter generator and 100-amp standby alternator.
The TBM 900 was developed on the quiet during a three-year development program that included 200 hours of flight-testing. The aircraft is already certified, and deliveries begin this month. The upgraded turboprop, which has a top speed of 330 knots at FL280, will make its formal U.S. debut at an event on Thursday in Polk City, Fla.