The New Model
At the Farnborough Air Show, Cessna began promoting a new version of its already impressive Grand Caravan EX. The aircraft is designed to be more versatile than ever before. Now that it has received proper US certification, the new aircraft features a new hard point option that is meant to increase the capabilities presented in the Grand Caravan EX. This allows for more fuel tanks to be included, which allows for a lengthier range. The aircraft’s cabin is also a lot more spacious which allows for more cargo space. It is also designed for flexibility in its operations. It can work for agricultural purposes, and can be configured to serve for special mission operations with armament.
President of Textron Aviation’s defense company, Tom Hammoor stated that the aircraft’s platform is based on the Caravan EX’s flexibility and it is especially tailored for the convenience of special mission operations.
The current model has been used for an assortment of special mission operations. These range from aerial surveying, transporting of goods, paratrooper, espionage, training, land and water operations, to functioning as air ambulance.
The original Caravan began its service in 1984, with a larger version released in 1990. In 2013, the $2.4 million Grand Caravan EX was released as the re-modeled and more powered version. That version delivered a higher performance in rate of climb that was enhanced by 38% with the Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-140 engines it was powered by.
Since the first 208 Caravan model was released in 1984, Cessna has distributed over 2,500 of the Caravan series aircrafts. In 2015 alone, 100 deliveries of the turboprop single were done, and 20 of those were constructed to be used for special missions. This model provides useful cabin space with a cabin that holds more than 1,560kg load, and it can operate from short unimproved surfaces.