The first production example of the new Cessna 182 JT-A Turbo Skylane made its inaugural flight on 21 May from the airframer's facility in Independence, Kansas. The four-seat JT-A is touted by Cessna as the first modern single-engined aircraft powered by a piston engine designed to run on Jet-A fuel.
"The Turbo Skylane JT-A performed just as expected," says Cessna senior test pilot Dale Bleakney. "We flew for 2.3h, achieved a flight level of 8,000ft [2,440m], and attained a true air speed of 158kt [292km/h] - everything went as expected."
The JT-A was launched last year at the AirVenture show in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, as a variant of Cessna's turbocharged Lycoming TIO-540-powered 182 Skylane. The piston-single is powered by a 230hp (172kW) Safran-built Jet A-burning SMA turbo diesel piston engine and could provide a springboard for a series of similar re-engining projects for the airframer.
The four-seat aircraft burns 11 gallons per hour and is expected to burn 30 to 40% less fuel than comparable avgas engines, says Cessna.
The Garmin G1000-equipped JT-A has an estimated range at maximum cruise speed of 1,893km (1,025nm). Its certified ceiling will be 6,096m, while its estimated useful load will be 462kg (1,020lb). Deliveries of the $515,000 Jet-A-burning Skylane are scheduled to begin later this year.