11:10 AM

Manufacturers Riding High

The recent General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) shipment and billing report for the first half of 2007 are very encouraging, and show some nice trends upward:

GAMA member companies’ airplane shipments and billings for the first half of 2007 totaled 1,883 units, a 1.7 percent increase over the same period last year, with industry billings rising 11.7 percent to $9.8 billion. Turboprop shipments rose 15.2 percent from 158 units in 2006 to 182 units over the same period in 2007. Meanwhile, the business jet market segment grew by 14.7 percent, with an increase in shipments from 414 units in the first half of 2006 to 475 units in the first half of 2007. Shipments of piston-powered airplanes through the second quarter of 2007 were down slightly from the same period last year, to 1,226 units, a 4.2 percent decrease.
The turboprop increase is due in part to the 18 TBM 850s that Socata EADS sold, generating billings of $51.6 million. The business jet sector was anchored by Cessna delivering 163 Citation, the Beechcraft/Hawker family moving 30 units, and Eclipse delivering 21 E500s. As always, a large part of the total sales figures for high-dollar bizjets came from Dassault, who moved 30 of their Falcons which cost somebody just shy of a billion at $981.3 million.

Piston-powered flying machines saw a slight dip, due most likely to the wait-and-see attitude of many regarding user fees. Here's a capsule summary of the main lines and their deliveries:
Beechcraft Bonanza G36 - 21
Beechcraft Baron G58 - 10
Cessna 172 Skyhawk - 43
Cessna 172S Skyhawk SP - 122
Cessna 182 Skylane - 63
Cessna T182 Turbo Skylane - 63
Cessna 206 Stationair - 12
Cessna T206 Turbo Stationair - 49
Cirrus SRV - 2
Cirrus SR20 - 51
Cirrus SR22 - 215
Columbia 350 - 29
Columbia 400 - 72
Diamond DA20-C1 - 28
Diamond DA40 - 126
Diamond DA42 Twin Star - 82
Piper PA-28-161 Warrior III - 13
Piper PA-28-181 Archer III - 6
Piper PA-28R-201 Arrow - 4
Piper PA-32R-301T Saratoga II TC - 21
Piper PA-32-301FT Piper 6X - 7
Piper PA-34-220T Seneca V - 10
Piper PA-44-180 Seminole - 4
These are first half 2007 numbers, and do not reflect any hardware that was sold or delivered at EAA Airventure Oshkosh. I can only assume that since EAA had one of their biggest shows ever in terms of attendance, we will see an overall increase in piston sales this year. And when we win the user fee battle, sales and deliveries are sure to begin ramping up fast.

For more GAMA information, here is their site, and here is the full shipment report as PDF. Their Media Guide page, found here, has a ton of great info you should download and keep handy to help explain the GA world to non-pilots.

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