Textron Aviation on 25 July unveiled the cabin mock-up and the branding for the single-engined turboprop design launched a year ago at the Experimental Aircraft Association’s AirVenture fly-in.

As the first turboprop product launched since Cessna acquired the Beechcraft portfolio of turboprops and pistons, the year-old project presented a test case for Textron Aviation’s future branding policy. The result favoured the acquiring company, with the Cessna Denali introduced to the market at Oshkosh.

The Cessna branding seemed even more surprising given the turboprop’s heritage. The mock-up shows the fuselage will be about 15cm (6in) wider than the Beechcraft King Air, feature its distinctive circular windows. The Denali also will be built alongside the King Air in a Wichita, Kansas, factory erected by Beechcraft.

Despite those links to the Beechcraft identity, Textron Aviation selected Cessna for the branding of the Denali, which is also the traditional name of the highest mountain peak in North America.

“We made a choice,” says Kriya Shortt, Textron Aviation’s vice-president of sales and marketing.

Shortt adds that Cessna has a legacy of single-engined pistons and turboprops, including the Model 208 Cessna Caravan, a utility transport. Textron Aviation has not yet released a model number for the Denali.

In other ways, the new Cessna single-engined turboprop represents a sharp break from either the Caravan or the Beechcraft. The Denali will be the first Cessna or Beechcraft turboprop not originally powered by the Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6 in more than half a decade.

GE Aviation is supplying the yet-unbranded advanced turboprop (ATP) engine, 1,600shp design with full authority digital electronic controls, uncooled turbine blades and a 16:1 overall pressure ratio. On 23 July, GE Aviation chief executive David Joyce revealed that additive manufacturing has allowed designers to make the ATP with 845 fewer parts than a traditional turboprop in that size and thrust class. The first engine to test is scheduled next year, with certification and entry into service of the Denali expected after 2019.

Source: FlightGlobal.com