Piper Aircraft has unveiled a new single-engine turboprop, dubbed the M700 Fury. The new aircraft will replace the M600/SLS in the company’s product line. Piper said that the M700 represents the first step towards a new generation of its M-Class family which, besides the M600/SLS, also includes the M350 piston and the M500 turboprop.
The M700 is powered by a 700-shp Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-52 engine, replacing the 600-shp PT6A-42A that powers the M600/SLS. Airframe changes to accommodate the more powerful engine include a redesigned intake plenum to improve ram air recovery, new engine mount assemblies, and an improved exhaust stack design to maximize residual thrust. The aircraft has a five-blade Hartzell propeller.
The M700 is equipped with the touchscreen-controlled Garmin G3000 glass flight deck. On the new aircraft, the G3000 avionics suite comes standard with the HALO Safety System. Initially certified on the M600/SLS, the HALO system incorporates a number of systems and technologies, including an autothrottle and Garmin Autoland capability. The M700 also retains Garmin’s PlaneSync technology, which includes a 4G LTE cellular and WiFi datalink that enables new capabilities to streamline pre-flight and post-flight activities. Customers can choose among six new interior schemes for their aircraft.
The M700 features a maximum cruise speed of 301 knots and a maximum range of 1,852 nautical miles. Maximum takeoff weight is 2,722 kilograms (6,000 pounds). Piper noted that, with a 301-knot cruise speed, the M700 is the fastest single-engine aircraft in Piper 87-year production history, and its second-fastest model of all time. Only the twin-engine Piper Cheyenne 400LS was faster.
Other performance specifications for the M700 include a takeoff distance over a 50-foot obstacle of 607 meters (1,994 feet), an initial climb rate of 2,048 fpm, and a landing distance over a 50-foot obstacle of 594 meters (1,950 feet).
The base price of the M700 is $4.1 million. The price for a typically-equipped version is estimated at $4.3 million.
U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification of the M700 is targeted to occur by the end of March 2024, with deliveries starting immediately thereafter. International validations from the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), Brazil, Canada, and the U.K. are planned to be achieved in the second half of 2024, with customer deliveries in those regions beginning by the end of 2024.
Piper continues to market and produce the M500, an entry-level turboprop that appeals primarily to individual owner/operators that are looking to move up from piston aircraft. The M700 provides a solution for customers that require greater performance than the M500 provides, but may feel that a jump to a larger, more expensive turboprop may be a step too far. It will have a strong appeal for individual owner/pilots, but its performance characteristics also give it the potential to generate significant sales from such customers as corporate flight departments and charter outfits.