During a presentation today, Embraer gave us more details about its upcoming turboprop project. A company executive has provided further information on what we can expect from Embraer’s new offering, while the president and CEO of the company even shared some images of what the aircraft will look like when it’s ready to fly.
Making the turboprop attractive again
“After the appearance of the regional jets, turboprops have lost their appeal,” notes Luis Carlos Affonso, Embraer’s SVP of Engineering, Technology Development and Corporate Strategy. The company executive made the comments during the presentation of the aircraft today. Affonso asserts that passengers these days see turboprops as “old,” “cramped” and “noisy” while not possessing enough overhead bin space.
Affonso then noted the following about the new Embraer aircraft:
“Our proposal here is to offer a high-tech, 70 to 90 seat turboprop, with the same cross-section of the E-Jets. Very comfortable, no middle seats and spacious overhead bins.”
It also looks like the planemaker is set to go in a different direction when it comes to powerplant placement for its new aircraft. Unlike the offerings from ATR and De Havilland Canada, the new Embraer turboprop will have rear fuselage-mounted engines. This, it says, will provide a quiet cabin and allow jetbridge compatibility.
Quiet and efficient
“With these game-changing characteristics, this aircraft will seamlessly replace the current 50 seat regional jets in very important markets,” Affonso notes. Additionally, the aircraft is expected to have a fuel burn that is 20% better than that of jets, leading to 20% lower emissions. and lower operating costs This statement seems to be one of the most common features of new aircraft, with an unstated expectation that each new generation of aircraft that is released offers an increased efficiency of around 20-25%.
“Even with current propulsion technology, this innovative design will provide significant and sustainable gains. Later this year, our commercial aviation teams will provide further details about this very innovative concept.”
The bottom line
So let’s summarize what we know so far about Embraer’s new turboprop:
- With the claim that there will be no middle seats, we can expect economy class seating to be a 2-2 configuration.
- The engines will be tail-mounted, leading to a quieter cabin.
- The quieter cabin will also offer larger overhead bins- an increasingly popular trend.
- With the claim that the aircraft will “replace the current 50-seat regional jets” while having capacity for 70-90 passengers, we could see a 50-seat configuration that includes a spacious premium class.
- And, of course, we can expect to see a big jump in efficiency paired with a drop in operating costs when compared to the current generation of aircraft in the same category.
All of Embraer’s claims lead to quite an exciting offering. Indeed, we haven’t seen a new turboprop offered for quite some time now, with the 70 to 80-seat ATR72-600 program launched back in 2007. Unfortunately, even though details will be coming out in the months to come, we won’t be expecting the new aircraft to be available until 2027.
What do you think about the design of Embraer’s new turboprop? Let us know what you think by leaving a comment.