Hawker Beechcraft delivers the 7,000th King Air
Hawker Beechcraft Corporation has delivered the 7,000th Beechcraft King Air since the twin-engine turboprops began production in 1964.
The milestone aircraft is a Beechcraft King Air 350i delivered to Herman & Kittle Properties, Inc., based in Indianapolis. Jeff L. Kittle, president and CEO of HKP, will appear as a guest of Hawker Beechcraft BC during a special delivery ceremony held at this week’s NBAA annual convention in Orlando.
All three current production King Air models – the King Air 350i, King Air 250 and King Air C90GTx – will be at Hawker Beechcraft’s static display at the Orlando Executive Airport, along with the Multi-Mission Beechcraft King Air 350ER demonstrator aircraft and other HBC aircraft.
“The King Air is still king. We delivered the 5,000th King Air in 1996, the 6,000th in 2005 and now we’ve reached 7,000 – clearly, interest in the all-time best-selling business aircraft family is as strong as ever,” said Shawn Vick, executive vice president, Hawker Beechcraft, Customers. “Thanks to constant innovation, its durability and utility are unmatched by any other airplane in the world. Through relentless product enhancements, the King Air’s performance and value have continuously increased and set the standards in our industry.”
The King Air is currently operated in 127 countries around the world, including all branches of the US military. King Air turboprops serve a variety of missions ranging from traditional transport of personnel and high-value cargo, to electronic and imagery surveillance, air ambulance, airway calibration, photographic mapping, training and weather modification.
“Our company was already excited about moving up from the King Air 200 that we’ve loved to a new King Air 350i, so realizing we were getting the 7,000th King Air produced just made it that much more special,” Kittle said. “There’s no question in my mind of why the Beechcraft King Air is so successful. These are great airplanes that are comfortable, meet our mission requirements and are economical to operate.”
Kittle added: “Probably the biggest selling point for us with the King Air 350i was the flexibility to load the plane up with full passengers and full fuel; there’s almost no airplane that you can do that with. We fly less than 700 miles for most of our trips, and we get there as fast as a business jet while burning less fuel and with our team being very comfortable and productive in the cabin. The addition of broadband internet and phone access has made it a true workspace. Being able to stay in touch and reply to messages in real-time has tremendous value that will quickly exceed the cost of that upgrade.”