Nextant on Monday took the wraps off the “cockpit of the future” for its G90XT remanufactured King Air business aircraft.
Crowds at Oshkosh are the first to see the Garmin 1000-based, three-screen cockpit with single-lever power control for each engine, integrated electronic engine management, digital pressurization, and an all-new environmental cooling system.
“There are many ergonomic improvements, including to the autopilot,” said Nextant president Sean McGeough. “For example, the fuel gauges have been moved from the left to the center, and digital pressurization will help reduce pilot workload.”
The mockup is displayed on the GE Aviation exhibit, as the G90XT is powered by GE H75 turboprops with Hartzell propellers in place of Pratt & Whitney PT6s.
McGeough is hoping for certification by year-end, and first deliveries in the first quarter of 2015.
Nextant is currently baselining a Blackhawk-modified King Air with PT6A-135 engines for comparison with the G90XT, as McGeough considers that aircraft the main competition. A Nextant-supplied G90XT is expected to cost around $2.4 million compared with $3.8 million for a brand new Beechcraft C90 GTx, McGeough said, although it could cost a current King Air owner less if he supplies his own aircraft for conversion.
Nextant is targeting the 1,500 King Air C90s in service around the world to remanufacture into G90XTs. He noted that its first remanufacturing program, of the Beech 400 jet into the Nextant 400XTi, has already snared 20% of the 600 aircraft out there.
Sean McGeough unveiled the cockpit of the future on Monday.