Piaggio Aero was last week demonstrating its P180 Avanti II in Australia for the first time, including a visit to the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS). After its participation at Asian Aerospace in Hong Kong in early September the manufacturer took the twin turboprop to Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney, with three days of the week-long tour dedicated to the RFDS, which currently operates Beechcraft King Airs and Pilatus PC-12s.

The P180 has already been selected by a number of customers for medical evacuation/air ambulance roles, including the United Arab Emirates Air Force and Air Defense. The manufacturer says the aircraft provides "outstanding accessibility for patient loading, and its spacious cabin offers a work-friendly environment for medical staff".

Piaggio Aero says the P180 is the fastest and most advanced executive/multi-utility aircraft available. The aircraft has a range of 2,775km (1,500nm), a maximum speed of 420kt (777km/h) and a maximum cruising altitude of 41,000ft (12,505m), with operating costs 33% lower than a jet. Equipped with Rockwell Collins Pro Line 21 avionics, it is licensed to operate with a single pilot and is capable of carrying up to nine passengers. It is available in a number of multi-purpose configurations.

Source: Flight International