Hawker Beechcraft filed for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11 on May 3, and if activity at the recent European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition is any indication, the Wichita aircraft manufacturer may be down, but it is definitely not out.
On a warm morning in the Texas hill country about 70 miles west of San Antonio, Mark Huffstutler pushed the thrust levers forward and launched a re-engined Hawker Beechcraft 400XPR into the cloudy skies. The first flight on May 3 was the culmination of 14 months of engineering and mechanical work, much of it done by Huffstutler’s Sierra Industries, a modification shop located at Garner Field Airport in Uvalde, Texas.
Hawker Beechcraft secured orders for 11 aircraft–including three Hawker 4000s, a Hawker 400XPR, six King Air 350i turboprops and a King Air 250–worth more than $120 million during EBACE 2012 last week.
Nextant Aerospace expects to deliver more than 30 remanufactured 400XTs by year-end, company CEO Ken Ricci said yesterday at EBACE. To date, the company has delivered 10 Nextant 400XTs, and it expects to financially break even on the program when it ships the 14th aircraft in about two months.
Three European operators signed up for the Hawker 4000 super-midsize jet–ordering one each yesterday at the EBACE show. The first one will go to Bucharest, Romania-based InterAviation, a charter operator that serves mainly the Middle East, Europe, Russia and other CIS countries. The second is being purchased by Orion-Malta, a company headquartered at Malta’s Luqa Airport. Both operators already have a Hawker 900XP in their fleet.
Barely two weeks after filing for U.S. Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, Hawker Beechcraft Corporation (Stand 7060) told a pre-EBACE press conference on May 13 that it will be “well positioned for the future” when it emerges from that status later this year.
The first flight of the re-engined Hawker 400XPR on May 3 was the culmination of 14 months of work by Hawker Beechcraft and Sierra Industries to further enhance the 400 model, continuing efforts to breath new life into one of Hawker Beechcraft’s older aircraft types.
Nextant Aerospace is delivering the tenth example of its Nextant 400XT here at EBACE 2012. The re-engined and cockpit-upgraded reworkings of Hawker Beechcraft’s Beechjet 400A are in demand on this of the Atlantic, according to the company.
Hawker Beechcraft’s 400XPR made its first flight this morning, powered by freshly installed Williams International FJ44-4A-32 engines. The modification work was done by Sierra Industries of Uvalde, Texas.
Nextant Aerospace is several STCs closer to receiving EASA certification for its remanufactured Beechjet 400A and XT models. The company’s 400XT has already received FAA certification. Two of the supplemental type certificates cover several major operational areas, including Class A terrain awareness and warning systems (Taws) as well as a wide area augmentation system (Waas). Other STCs cover a number of in-flight entertainment options. Earlier deliveries already included the equipment necessary for certification.