• Cirrus Aircraft's SR20 G6 has a 215-hp engine, which has brought the four-seater a 68-kg increase in useful load. (Cirrus)
    Cirrus Aircraft's SR20 G6 has a 215-hp engine, which has brought the four-seater a 68-kg increase in useful load. (Cirrus)

Cirrus Aircraft's SR20 G6 has topped the small four-seat charts in the 2018 first quarter shipment figures released by the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) yesterday.

Twenty SR20s were delivered to customers in the period January-March 2018, which is a 150% increase over the same period last year. The company shipped only 46 of the type last calendar year, and having achieved nearly half of that already sets the SR20 up for a good sales year.

By contrast, Textron shipped only 13 C172SPs, the lowest quarterly result since the beginning of 2016, when only nine Skyhawks were sold. Piper's Archer III and Diamond's DA40 also recorded significant increases, which also would have taken chunks out of the C172SP results.

The good result for the SR20 G6 was offset at Cirrus by a poor showing from its flagship SR22/T. Usually shipping in the region of 50-100 airframes per quarter, only 33 SR22s went out the door in Q1 2018. That is the lowest shipment figure for the 300-hp fast single in the past five years.

In all, the large single-engine four-seat market was flat, with the C182T, Cessna TTx and Beech Bonanza shipping only one aircraft each, meaning the SR22 still dominated the field despite its lower-than-usual figures. Remarkably, the forgotten Mooney Acclaim/Ovation took second spot in the category with four aircraft delivered; the equal-best quarterly result since the company was resurrected in 2013.

Beechcraft's soft start continued in the twin-engine sector, with only one G58 Baron being sent to a customer. The Baron  averaged around six aircraft per quarter last year. By contrast, Diamond's DA42 continued to be a twin star, with 17 deliveries for Q1, a 325% increase over the four shipped in the same period last year. Tecnam's P2006T continued to hold its spot in second place with 12 aircraft sold.

The battle for SETP supremacy continued between the Cessna Caravan and the Pilatus PC-12, with honours for the quarter shared at 12 airframes a piece. Piper's M500/M600 product followed up with 10 aircraft shipped.

Honda's HA420 twin jet held onto the Number One spot in the jet market for the second quarter in a row, with 12 of the type delivered. The rising challenger in the market is the Cirrus SF50 Vision, of which 10 airframes were rolled out. Traditional market leaders Cessna and Embraer have a fight on their hands, with only six Citation M2s and eight Phenoms reported as shipped.

Cessna has stopped reporting the Citation Mustang and the type has now disappeared from the product range, an expected development given the recent sales performance against the M2. The single Cessna TTx delivered in this quarter is likely to be the last; it too has been deleted from the Cessna family.

Major Aircraft Shipments Q1 2018

Aircraft Q1 2018 Q1 2017 Change
Piper Warrior III 0 0 0%
Cessna C172SP 13 20 -35%
Piper Archer III 16 11 45%
Diamond DA40 11 7 57%
Cirrus SR20 20 8 150%
Tecnam P2010 6 9 -33%
Cessna C182T 1 7 -86%
Beech G36 Bonanza 1 3 -67%
Cirrus SR22/T 33 49 -33%
Cessna TTx 1 1 0%
Piper M350/Matrix 2 2 0%
Mooney Ovation/Acclaim 4 2 100%
Beech G58 Baron 1 5 -80%
Piper Seminole 5 4 25%
Piper Seneca V 0 0 -
Diamond DA42 17 4 325%
Tecnam P2006T 12 8 50%
Diamond DA62 3 6 -50%
Cessna Caravan Series 12 8 50%
Quest Kodiak 100 7 9 -22%
Pilatus PC12 12 12 0%
Daher TBM 900/910/930 8 7 14%
PAC 750XL 2 1 100%
Piper Meridian/M500/M600 10 4 150%
Cessna Mustang & M2 6 10 -40%
Eclipse 550 0 3 -100%
Embraer Phenom 100 & 300 8 11 -27%
Honda HA420 12 15 -20%
SF50 Vision 10 - -
Pilatus PC24 2 - -
Cessna T206H 6 13 -54%
GippsAero Airvan 8 1 4 -75%



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