Aviation enthusiasts following ATR would have known about the aircraft manufacturer’s development of a STOL (Short Take-Off and Landing) version of the ATR 42-600. The company has finally authorized the launch of the new 50-seater variant, dubbed the ATR 42-600S (with the S standing for Short Take-Off and Landing).
The new type which has already drawn 20 commitments, should receive certification by the second half of 2022. Earlier this year, leasing company Elix Aviation Capital committed to 10 orders while Air Tahiti has expressed interest in two.
As mentioned in the title, the 42-600S features a number of modifications geared to shorter field performance including a larger rudder for better control at lower speeds, as well as the option to be able to switch between the engine rating of the 42 and 72 models depending on the field length. There is also a new autobrake system which will allow for full braking power to be applied immediately on landing. They’ve also added the ability to symmetrically deploy all spoilers to further improve its braking efficiency.
ATR expects that its newest model to expand its addressable market by as much as 25%, as there are close to 500 airports globally with runways between 800 – 1,000 meters in length. On paper, the aircraft is one of the most efficient types in its class, and can help open up more access to remote markets. Two of the obvious advantages include performing where regular 42-600 types struggle, but still offering more capacity over other smaller competing STOL types.
ATR Chief Executive Officer Stefano Bortoli, commented: “Adding the ATR 42-600S to our family makes total sense and paves the way for the company’s future. There is a huge potential for 50-seater aircraft and the ATR 42-600S could help airlines widen their horizons, as it can reach up to around 500 new airports across the globe. This is clear illustration of our dedication in helping more people and more remote communities benefit from being part of a connected world and in a sustainable way.”