Evektor’s twin-engine EV-55 Outback aircraft has been a bit of a slow burner since it was unveiled by the Czech company a few years ago but it has been given a boost with an order for 50 of the multi-purpose aircraft by a Chinese company.
Guangdong-based Long Hao Group is a highway, infrastructure and public works investment and construction company. It has business interests in civil airports, aviation industrial parks, smart city engineering, new energy industry, environmental engineering, film and television media and high-tech development. Exactly what the Group will use the EV-55 aircraft for hasn’t been revealed.
However, Evektor designed the EV055 to be flexible and with the ability to operate from short and unmade runways. It can seat 9-14 passengers or be configured for cargo, or a mix. It is powered by two Pratt & Whitney turboprops, and has an all-aluminium airframe.
“We expect the EASA type certification process to be finalised at the beginning of 2017,” said Evektor. “The first deliveries of the EV-55 to operators will be carried out in year 2018. The production capacity for 2017 is reserved for launch customers. In terms of transported weight in pounds per nautical mile, the cost of the EV-55 is even lower than those of its single engine competitors.”