US company Textron Aviation has been awarded an $11 million contract for its new Beechcraft King Air 360ER aircraft. Built in Wichita, Kansas, the plane will be delivered through a foreign military sales contract to Sri Lanka with production set to be completed by September 2025.
The aircraft will be handed over to the US Army, which will install sensors before delivering it to the Sri Lankan Air Force.
“The King Air has been the turboprop of choice throughout this region for more than five decades, and the new 260 and 360 will build on that legendary reputation,” Textron Vice President of Sales for Europe, the Middle East, and Africa Tom Perry said.
“We have incorporated innovative and next-generation technologies that enhance the flying experience for an already proven aircraft,” he added.
The Beechcraft King Air family of planes is among the twin-turboprops manufactured by the company since 1974, the longest-ever production run for any civilian turboprop aircraft.
About the Beechcraft King Air 360ER
Measuring 46.6 feet (14.2 meters) long and 14.3 feet (4.35 meters) high, the Beechcraft King Air 360ER has been designed to reduce pilot workload with features such as “ThrustSense Autothrottle,” which provides precision control for optimized power output and efficient takeoff.
It has been developed to offer flexible and reconfigurable interiors to accommodate passengers and cargo, function as an air ambulance, or conduct other missions.
The aircraft includes three 14-inch touchscreen displays, a multi-scan weather radar system, a dual flight management system, graphic flight planning, and a crew alert system.
Introduced in 2020, the jet has a maximum range of 3,345 kilometers (2078.4 miles) and can carry 11 people. It has a top speed of 560 kilometers (348 miles) per hour and a maximum altitude of 35,000 feet (10,668 meters).
Textron Aviation also manufactures the 350ER for government, military and commercial purposes, aerial survey, and surveillance.
In September last year, the aircraft received certification from the European Aviation Safety Agency, enabling the company to deliver to customers throughout the EU.