Air Botswana signs for two ATR 72-600s
Botswana national flag carrier to upgrade its ATR fleet
African airline Air Botswana today signed a firm order for two ATR 72-600s. Having operated ATR -500 series aircraft since 1996, the Botswanan national flag carrier has been an ATR operator for more than 20 years and will now upgrade and restructure its fleet with the addition of the latest generation turboprop aircraft. The ATR -600 series is the market leader in the regional aviation segment with a 40% fuel burn advantage against its turboprop competitor. It is a proven route opener, having opened 150 routes in 2017 thanks to its versatility and operational efficiency.
The aircraft will be configured with a 70-seat, dual class cabin, and deliveries are scheduled to begin in the fourth quarter of this year. They are also equipped with the newest navigation aid tools. The airline currently operates a fleet of three ATR 42-500s and one ATR 72-500. With this deal, the airline will start a progressive replacement of their former turboprop fleet, adding the newest standards of comfort.
ATR estimates that there will be the need for over 3000 turboprops in the next twenty years, with more than 10% of these aircraft destined for Africa & the Middle East and foresees the creation of some 300 new routes.
Agnes Tsholofelo Khunwana, CEO of Air Botswana, said: “ATR is very reliable and has served us very well for over 20 years. The aircraft are very efficient and generally have favourable economics. Acquiring the new generation ATR 72-600 in a dual class configuration would be our most customer-centric development this year which I am confident, would greatly be embraced by our market.”
Christian Scherer, Chief Executive Officer of ATR commented: “Air Botswana’s decision to upgrade their fleet with two ATR 72-600s makes perfect sense in the context of the African market. There are currently around 400 regional passenger aircraft flying in Africa. Many of them will soon need to be replaced to ensure the continuation of regional connectivity. Operators with the ATR-600 series, like Air Botswana, will stand in a class of their own, both economically and in terms of passenger comfort.”
Air Saint-Pierre commits to purchase an ATR 42-600
St Pierre and Miquelon airline will replace its current ATR 42-500
As with its predecessor, the -600 series is certified to take-off and land in crosswind conditions of 45 knots, a unique capability which is essential to operating in the challenging conditions of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon.
Air Saint-Pierre Chief Executive Officer Benoit Olano said “It makes perfect sense for us to continue our partnership with ATR by acquiring the latest generation -600 series aircraft. Every operator is looking for the most efficient aircraft on the market to maximise their operations, however, with a small fleet, it is vital that we invest in an aircraft that really delivers on every single criterion that we require. The ATR does this, and will provide the people of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon with the continuing connectivity they need.”
Christian Scherer, Chief Executive Officer of ATR, commented: “Air Saint Pierre realised the operational advantages of turboprops many years ago, and it is very rewarding that they continue to put their trust in the ATR product. This demonstrates again the versatility of our aircraft, often serving destinations with challenging weather conditions, all over the world, whilst allowing airlines to take advantages of its unbeatable economics and comfort.”
Aurigny Signs Letter of Intent for three ATR 72-600s equipped with the new ClearVision™ system
These new ATR-600s will feature the new ClearVision™ Enhanced Vision System (EVS), which uses an external camera to display an augmented outside-view in real-time to a head-mounted visor, worn by the pilot. The EVS significantly improves a pilot’s vision and as Guernsey is situated in the English Channel it is regularly affected by fog, often at short notice, leading to disruptions to flight operations. An ATR equipped with the ClearVision™ EVS addresses this pain point of the pilot’s limited visibility and could have saved 50% of the forbidden landings (24 of 48) in Guernsey, over the period of a year. Aurigny anticipates that this innovation will deliver significant savings in their future operations.
ClearVision™ is an option on ATR’s latest avionics suite, Standard 3, which delivers important operational improvements. In addition to the EVS selected by Aurigny, ClearVision™ also offers a Synthetic Vision System (SVS) that provides the pilot’s Head-Up Display with digital images of terrain and obstacles, from an extensive database. Operators can also opt for a Combined Vision System (CVS), combining the EVS and SVS, and offering pilots the best possible vision and situational awareness.
ATR anticipates that in the next 20 years, there will be a need for over 3000 turboprops while regional air traffic will grow 4.5% on a yearly basis. A significant proportion of this growth will come from route creation, with 30% of the traffic growth coming from routes that do not currently exist. ATR aircraft are proven route openers, with the -600 series aircraft opening over 100 routes a year on average.
Aurigny Chief Executive Officer, Mark Darby, said: “Once we have the approval from the States of Guernsey to proceed, the entry into service of the new aircraft equipped with the new ClearVision™ system will reduce flight disruptions, which will be very good news for the people of Guernsey, who rely on air travel for essential connectivity. Beyond beating the fog, upgrading to the -600 series will also further enhance the operational efficiency of Aurigny. We are also excited about welcoming our passengers into the modern ATR cabin and offering them even more comfort when they fly.”
ATR Chief Executive, Christian Scherer, remarked: “Aurigny’s pioneering use of ClearVision™ will be a first in commercial aviation, here in Europe. Being the first to offer such a solution to our clients and operators demonstrates ATR’s constant desire to match their needs. In the regional aviation market, many airlines fly in challenging locations and ClearVision™ offers an opportunity to give pilots increased visibility and improved situational awareness without requiring expensive upgrades to an airport’s infrastructure – which in many occasions may even be completely unfeasible.”
Drukair places an order for a new ATR 42-600 equipped with the ClearVision™ system
Bhutanese flag-carrier to benefit from latest generation aircraft’s cutting-edge avionics
Drukair has been operating ATR 42s since 2011 and operates in challenging environments, serving small airports in the Himalayan Mountains. Certified last year, the ATR -600’s latest Standard 3 avionics includes RNP AR 0.3/0.3, which further enhances airfield accessibility and operational performance.
ATR predicts that regional aviation will require more than 600 40-60-seat turboprop aircraft over the next 20 years. The ATR 42-600 is currently the only 50-seater turboprop in production and a proven route opener. In 2017, ATR aircraft opened over 150 routes and 30% of the overall traffic growth over the next 20 years will be represented by routes that do not exist today.
Tandi Wangchuk, Chief Executive Officer of Drukair, said: “Purchasing another ATR was a natural decision. The improvements delivered by the -600 series’ new Standard 3 avionics, along with the ClearVision™ CVS system add significant operational and thus economic value. We also look forward to welcoming passengers into the most modern cabin in regional aviation and offering them the most comfortable in-flight experience possible.”
ATR Chief Executive Officer, Christian Scherer, remarked: “Drukair’s decision to purchase the latest version of our product not only validates the versatility and operational efficiency of our -600 series aircraft but also affirms the value of our policy of continuous development. Offering valuable solutions which have a genuine and immediate impact on our customer’s business will always be a priority for us at ATR. We look forward to contributing to the famous “Gross National Happiness” of the people of Bhutan, long into the future.”
EWA Air signs a commitment for two ATR 72-600s
Mahoran airline to upgrade its fleet with latest generation turboprops
Mayotte-based carrier EWA has today signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the acquisition of two ATR 72-600s. The latest-generation turboprops will replace and upgrade their two currently leased ATR 72-500s. The airline, a subsidiary of Air Austral, has been an ATR operator since its launch in 2013 and uses its aircraft to connect Mayotte with destinations in Comoros, Madagascar, Mozambique, and Tanzania, providing essential connectivity to passengers travelling for business and leisure.
The aircraft will be equipped with 64 seats with deliveries beginning before the end of this year.
ATR anticipate that in the next 20 years, there will be the need for over 3000 turboprops and regional air traffic will grow 4.5% each year. A significant proportion of this growth will be supported by route creation. 30% of the traffic growth by 2037 will come from routes that do not currently exist. ATR aircraft are proven route openers, with the -600 series aircraft opening over 100 routes a year on average.
Commenting on the deal, EWA Air Chairman, Marie Joseph Male, said: “The acquisition of these aircraft represent an important step for us, as we will be introducing the most modern and suitable regional aircraft for inter-island operations. The -600 series aircraft will continue to deliver the operational efficiency and reliability that has been so vital to us as a new operator, whilst enhancing the levels of comfort that we are able to offer our passengers.”
Christian Scherer, Chief Executive Officer of ATR, remarked: “It is most rewarding when an operator comes back to us and signs for more of our aircraft. Beyond the vote of confidence, it is a testimony to the level of customer service that we provide. The versatility of the ATR is well proven and markets around the world rely on the connectivity that our aircraft provide. The ability of the ATR to operate on short runways is unmatched by any other turboprop or regional jet and ATRs are the perfect aircraft for linking small communities in this part of the Indian Ocean.”