Mahindra GippsAero, the Australia-based arm of Mahindra Aerospace, will roll out its 10-seater GA10 aircraft in the North American, Australian and African markets by the end of 2014, a senior executive of the company told FE.
“The GA10 is set to be launched in Q3, FY15 (October-December 2014),” said Mahindra Aerospace’s executive director and CEO, Arvind Mehra.
At present, the Australian subsidary of the Bangalore-based Mahindra Aerospace, which itself is a division of Indian multinational conglomerate Mahindra Group, is working on the company’s marquee offering GA10 — a product that is set to mark the company’s entry into the turbo prop market.
“We have completed its (GA10) structural testing and the flight testing phase is half way through. Our team is working closely with the Australian certification authorities,” Mehra added.
The GA10, which is powered by a Rolls Royce 250 turboprop engine, can be used for wide range of applications from passenger and freight work to survey and surveillance roles. It is expected to cost between $600,000 and $700,000 per unit.
“We (have) significantly restructured GA in order to improve operational efficiency thereby cutting down financial wastage,” Mehra said.
“Our intent is for our team to graduate from this (GA10) to the CNM5 and GA18 certification,” he said, adding, “We are also engaging in deep analysis of the 15 to 20 seat market.”
At present, the company is looking to get certification for its CNM5, a five seater which the company is developing with CSIR and NAL, and GA 18 — a twin engine turboprop which is slated to hit the market sometime in 2015.
The company also plans to produce entire airframes for light aircraft out of its facility in the next couple of years.
“General Aviation is a global business. Growth in this sector is expected from developing economies and regions with surface transport challenges,” he said.
Currently, the aircraft under the company’s portfolio consists of eight-seater Airvan GA8, and 18-seater Airvan GA18, five-seater CNM5, and the upcoming GA10. All, these aircraft are produced by GippsAero. Mahindra Aerospace had in December 2009 bought 75.1% majority stake in the Australian company.
“Our entire portfolio is extremely versatile and is suited for charter, travel and tourism, rescue operations, air freight, sky diving, ISR and for use by the para military,” Mehra said.
“We have established a global dealer network in North America, Africa, Asia and South America and are in the process of