Beechcraft has boosted the performance of two of its key King Air aircraft. The C90GTx has better takeoff performance and the King Air 250 has a payload weight increase.

NBAA 2014Textron Aviation, owners of Beechcraft and Cessna, announced the upgrades at NBAA which is being staged this week at Orlando, Florida.

The Beechcraft King Air C90GTx is being fitted with Raisbeck performance enhancements comprising swept-blade propellers and dual aft body strakes.

“This is the latest in a long series of continuous enhancements we have introduced to the King Air 90 series. The new Beechcraft King Air C90GTx looks stunning on the ramp and performs like no other,” said Christi Tannahill, senior vice president, Turboprop Aircraft. “The most significant of the changes is shortening the takeoff distance by nearly 600 feet (182 metres), opening up more airports and getting our owners closer to their final destination.”

The new King Air C90GTx features the Hartzell swept blade turbofan propeller with a 30-degree blade sweep and 96-inch diameter (6-inch increase over existing). The propeller provides more takeoff and climb thrust with less noise in the cockpit. The aircraft’s takeoff distance is reduced by 23 percent, from 2,575 feet to 1,984 feet. Slower approach speeds provide 10 percent shorter landing distances over a 50 foot obstacle from 2,400 feet to 2,160 feet.

In addition to the new propeller, dual aft body strakes have been added to improve directional stability at low speeds, passenger ride quality and aircraft handling characteristics. Other improvements include a new high-speed nose gear tyre and updates to the Collins Pro Line 21 flight displays.

King Air 250
Above: Beechcraft King Air 250 can be ordered with an increased payload. Top: King Air C90GTx with Raisbeck swept-blade props and aft strakes.

King Air 250 payload increase
The Beechcraft King Air 250 – the middle aircraft in the King Air range – can now be ordered with a factory-installed modification that increases the maximum takeoff weight from 12,500 pounds to 13,420 pounds, providing 1,025 pounds of payload with full fuel.

“This is an important upgrade that many of our King Air 250 owners have been asking for, especially our special mission operators who want more capacity to carry heavy equipment or operators who want more range with increased passengers and baggage,” said Tannahill.

“Having the option to fill the King Air 250 with full fuel and still get more than 1,000 pounds of payload is a great addition to an airplane that has been exceptionally popular in every corner of the world.”

King Air 250 aircraft with this option are certified in the commuter category, and include the installation of safety systems such as engine fire extinguisher and illuminated escape path floor markings. A BE-200 type rating is required to operate aircraft in the commuter category.

The modification, developed with CenTex Aerospace of Waco, Texas, is also an aftermarket option for in-service King Air 250 aircraft and available through Textron Aviation’s factory-owned service centres.

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