Air Tahiti has taken delivery of its first ATR 42-600 in a bid to modernize its fleet. The aircraft is part of the firm order for seven latest-generation ATR aircraft ordered in August 2010 and December 2012 (three ATR 42-600s and four ATR 72-600s). The other aircraft will be shipped over the next three years. In addition to the delivery being a notable first for Air Tahiti, this aircraft is the very first to fly in the French overseas departments.
The introduction of these new ATR-600s kicks off Air Tahiti's fleet renewal enabling the airline while improving its operating performances and reducing fuel and operating costs. Air Tahiti's new aircraft, the most fuel-efficient aircraft in their category, will gradually be introduced into service on the regional routes in French Polynesia and will operate an international connection between Papeete and Rarotonga international airport in the Cook Islands.
This first ATR 42-600 can accommodate up to 48 passengers. The pleasant 'Armonia' cabin is quiet and roomy with comfortable seats for passengers, optimized space, LED atmospheric lighting and larger luggage compartments. This aircraft combines outstanding fuel efficiency with reduced operating and maintenance costs.
Like all the ATR aircraft operated by Air Tahiti, the ATR-600 is exceptionally versatile and capable of adapting to even the most difficult runways (short, narrow or unpaved), thereby allowing the airline to fly to a large number of destinations. ATRs are currently the only turboprop aircraft to get an ETOPS 120 certification (authorization to fly over seas and oceans for 2 hours in the event of an engine failure), making them the ideal solution for Air Tahiti's operation over French Polynesia.
“With the arrival of these new ATR aircraft, our passengers will be able to benefit from the exceptional comfort of an ultra-modern cabin, which is an essential criterion for our quality of service and customer satisfaction,” declared Maté Galénon, Managing Director of Air Tahiti. “We have been preparing for the arrival of our new ATR-600s for more than a year. Our flight crews, engineers have already been trained and are ready to operate these new aircraft. Polynesia is looking forward to flying in the brand new ATRs.”
“We are delighted that the airline chose the latest generation of ATR aircraft to renew its fleet,” stated ATR's Chief Executive Officer, Filippo Bagnato. “The ATR 42-600 and ATR 72-600 make unmatched operational savings and have one of the most comfortable cabins in their category. We are quite sure that the ATR '-600s' will fit in perfectly with Air Tahiti's plans for growth.”
About the ATR 42-600:
Passenger capacity: 46 to 50 seats
Engines: Pratt & Whitney 127M
Maximum takeoff power: 2,160 hp per engine
Maximum takeoff weight: 18,600 kg
Maximum load: 5,500 kg
Range with full load: 800 nautical miles (1,300 km)
About Air Tahiti:
Air Tahiti is the state-run air transport operator in French Polynesia, based at Faa'a international airport, Papeete. The company is a key driving force behind the development of the economy and the social links of the region. Air Tahiti was officially founded in 1986. The first ATR aircraft joined Air Tahiti's fleet in January 1987, replacing the Fokker models, and the airline's network progressively extended to include a larger number of islands. Today, Air Tahiti's fleet of ATRs services almost 90% of French Polynesia.
ATR is one of the world's leading makers of regional aircraft with up to 90 seats. Founded in 1981, ATR now sets the standard in regional air transportation, with sales in excess of 1,300 aircraft and more than 180 operators in over 90 countries. ATR is an equal partnership between two major European aeronautics players, Alenia Aermacchi (a Finmeccanica Group company) and EADS. Its head office is in Toulouse. ATR is ISO 14001 certified.
For additional information, log on to www.atraircraft.com.