Hawker Beechcraft unveiled at AirVenture a new entry-level model for its King Air turboprop line with improved payload and range.

The C90GTx is scheduled to enter service in early 2010, replacing the C90GTi, which was introduced in 2007. Hawker Beechcraft executive vice-president Shawn Vick says the C90GTx, featuring composite winglets that result in better fuel efficiency and climb performance, will be able to fly 1,850km (1,000nm) with four passengers, a 370km improvement over the C90GTi. A 175kg (385lb) increase in maximum take-off weight, to 4,790kg also gives the C90GTx nearly double the full-fuel payload of the C90GTi - 340kg compared with just over 170kg. "We're taking the entry-level King Air even further," Vick says.

The new aircraft lists for $3.6 million. Existing King Air C90 and E90 customers will also be able to purchase retrofit kits from later this year.

The C90GTx is the eighth new King Air model introduced by Hawker Beechcraft since 2003. The last new King Air model, the top-end 350i, was unveiled at the NBAA convention in Orlando last November.

King Air C90GTx
 © Hawker Beechcraft

Vick says the 350i, featuring a "totally redesigned interior", is on schedule to enter service later this year. "It is the most advanced cabin interior in its class - turboprop or jet," he says.

Hawker Beechcraft director of product marketing Ron Gunnarson says the 350i is "knee deep in certification work". He says certificating the new cabin is "quite intensive" and if enough of the certification work is completed by mid-October the aircraft will debut at NBAA 2009.

Source: Flight International