Beechcraft Defense Company Looks to International Markets for Growth in Military Trainer, Light Attack Aircraft
Increased military spending in Middle East, North Africa, Latin America and Asia brings potential for global sales
Today during the Paris Air Show, Beechcraft Defense Company said that it expects the growth in international defense budgets to lead to demand for its trainer and light attack aircraft. Although most Western nations saw defense cuts in 2012, military spending rose by 7.8 percent in North Africa, 8.4 percent in the Middle East and 4.2 percent in Latin America1.
Since deliveries of its T-6 military trainer began in 2000 to the U.S. Air Force and Navy, Beechcraft has expanded into international markets, with customers including NATO Flying Training Canada, the Hellenic Air Force of Greece, the Israeli Air Force, the Iraqi Air Force, the Royal Moroccan Air Force and the Mexican Air Force. A key factor in its international sales is the fact that the T-6 is the most proven and cost-effective military training aircraft, with Beechcraft delivering 137 aircraft to military customers outside the U.S. in the last 12 years. In total, the company has produced more than 800 T-6 aircraft, which have been used to train pilots from approximately 25 countries. Most recently, the company announced a contract with the U.S. Air Force for 35 aircraft.
“We are seeing growing interest in the T-6 and AT-6 from defense departments around the world who are looking for proven reliability and cost effective solutions,” said Russ Bartlett, president, Beechcraft Defense Company. “The capabilities of these aircraft are second to none, and allow pilots to be trained to the highest standards, and for air forces to operate highly flexible, light attack aircraft.”
In addition to accommodating instruction in flying basics, instrument flight procedures and acrobatic manoeuvres, the T-6 delivers a world-class training capability that is versatile and flexible enough for teaching introductory flight training tasks, yet sophisticated enough to enable the more challenging and complex advanced training missions that could previously be accomplished only in far more expensive jet aircraft. The AT-6 is an affordable and capable multi-role, multi-mission aircraft system tailored for initial pilot training, weapons training, operational NetCentric ISR and light attack capabilities for irregular warfare. The AT-6 leads the Light Attack market with purpose-built capability, affordability, sustainability and interoperability for the most demanding of scenarios.