Hawker Beechcraft Defense Company (HBDC) today announced it has kicked off a two-week demonstration tour in New Zealand with its T-6C Texan II military trainer. The tour began this week at the Royal New Zealand Air Force’s (RNZAF) 75th Anniversary Air Show at RNZAF Base Ohakea, near Palmerston North.
“This is a great opportunity for us to show the world’s most versatile and capable integrated pilot training system to a broad range of interested prospects from New Zealand and the Pacific Region,” said Russ Bartlett, HBDC vice president, Business Development. “Our presence at the 75th Anniversary Air Show is excellent exposure of the robust capability, affordability and sustainability of the T-6C, which has already completed more than 15,700 miles on its journey to New Zealand.”
The T-6C was flown from HBDC’s headquarters in Wichita, Kan., to RNZAF Base Ohakea – a distance of 15,733 miles – in a total elapsed time of nearly 65 flight hours. The trip included stops in Canada, Greenland, Iceland, England, Italy, Greece, Egypt, UAE, India, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia and Australia.
During the RNZAF 75th Anniversary Air Show, HBDC’s aerobatic demonstration team will perform single-ship, low-altitude aerobatics in a standard equipped T-6C military trainer. The team will also participate in the Warbirds Over Wanaka Air Show on the South Island the following week.
The T-6C aerobatic team debuted in 2011 at the Avalon Air Show in Victoria, Australia. The team’s 2012 tour schedule will include performances at air shows such as Farnborough International Air Show, the Royal International Air Tattoo, the Atlantic Canada International Air Show and the Canada International Air Show. Its tour will also include U.S. demonstrations at Andrews (Md.) and McConnell (Kan.) Air Force Bases; Marine Corps Air Station Miramar (Calif.); Naval Air Station Pensacola (Fla.); as well as air shows in Oshkosh, Wis.; Columbia, Mo.; Fort Worth, Texas; Atlanta, Ga.; and Houston, Texas.
“Performing aerobatics in the T-6C is something that flows naturally from the typical training syllabus for the airplane because it is such a capable and versatile aircraft,” Bartlett said. “It allows us to demonstrate the aircraft’s handling and superior performance in a dramatic fashion.”
In addition to the hard-point wings, the T-6C features an integrated glass cockpit and the advanced Esterline CMC Cockpit 4000 avionics suite that greatly expands advanced training opportunities. The systems are integrated with a Hands-On Throttle and Stick, providing the student pilot and instructor with a simpler interface to the digital cockpit. The CMC Cockpit 4000 avionics suite is the first in its class to incorporate a fully integrated and FAA-certified dual FMS/GPS navigation suite that meets the navigation performance standards required for current worldwide airspace equipment. The open architecture design of the Cockpit 4000 provides the flexibility to expand capabilities and continuously meet current and future training needs.
Deliveries of the T-6 began in 2000 after the aircraft was initially selected to fill the Joint Primary Aircraft Training System role for the U.S. Air Force and the U.S. Navy. Since then, additional military programs worldwide, 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 our newest customer, the Mexican Air Force, have chosen the T-6 as their primary trainer. To date, the company has delivered more than 740 T-6 aircraft.
Hawker Beechcraft Corporation is a world-leading manufacturer of business, special mission, light attack and trainer aircraft – designing, marketing and supporting aviation products and services for businesses, governments and individuals worldwide. The company’s headquarters and major facilities are located in Wichita, Kan., with operations in Little Rock, Ark.; Chester, England, U.K.; and Chihuahua, Mexico. The company leads the industry with a global network of more than 100 factory-owned and authorized service centers. For more information, visit www.hawkerbeechcraft.com.