Eagle Creek in the News

JetProp 1000 Continues to Lead Twin Commander Sales Market

The long slide in flying activity and aircraft values across all segments of the market seems to have bottomed out. Recent reports tell of modest improvements on both fronts.  Bruce Byerly, a long-time and successful Twin Commander salesman and vice-president of Naples Jet Center, offers the following perspective on the Twin Commander market – September 2010

Bruce Byerly, Naples Jet Center

Bruce Byerly, Naples Jet Center

Across all Twin Commander models, the average number of aircraft for sale is down approximately 10 percent from peak 2010 levels. It’s difficult to conclude whether or not we are seeing a sustainable trend, but I can report that the last few weeks have witnessed strong activity in aircraft sales, especially on aggressively priced Dash 10 aircraft. Of course, with a cost basis typical of purchases in the last 10 years, today’s prices are not as good for owners interested in selling they are for customers interested in buying.

As I mentioned in my last market report, the model 1000 continues to lead the way in terms of sales, with inventory at the lowest level in recent memory. Supporting the sales activity, all of the major Twin Commander service facilities that I’ve spoken with recently say they are booked to capacity. To me, this indicates that owners are interested in investing in the future of their Twin Commander aircraft. I take this to mean that owners expect to continue to fly and to appreciate the performance of their aircraft compared to the alternatives.

It would be easy to dismiss the alternatives, but since most of us do not make decisions in a vacuum, we should consider something remarkable: Twin Commanders today routinely sell for as much or more than the business jets that were supposed to replace them years ago.

On this point, a new client and former business jet charter customer asked me last week how to make sense of the current aircraft market. His own demonstration flight provided the answer: A short-notice, single-pilot trip into a 3,000-foot-long runway. An important bonus was the fact that the trip was completed on half the fuel that a chartered jet would have required, so turboprop technology remains relevant. Today’s frugal market recognizes it as the most efficient tool for many typical missions.

One of our more famous clients just returned from an around-the-world trip is his Dash 10-powered 690A. As I recall, he visited more than 50 airports and logged well over 100 hours and 25,000-plus miles of trouble-free flying. I’ll let him tell you the details at the next Twin Commander University, but it’s another great story that reminds me of why owners appreciate their Twin Commanders, and why, even in down cycles, there are new converts ready to join the fold.