By Scott Hamilton and Bjorn Fehrm
Jan. 31, 2022, © Leeham News: ATR is now effectively the only turboprop manufacturer outside of China and Russia in the 40-80 seat sector. The models are the ATR 42-600, ATR 42-600S (STOL), and ATR 72-600.
The series was built on simplicity with unpowered controls and the simplest possible systems. It has worked well for ATR when selling to markets that want airlift to the lowest possible cost. It also means the design is at its limits capacity and speed-wise, any more capacity or performance and it needs powered controls and more elaborate systems. It was behind ATR’s desire to develop a new, larger model in the past.
But ATR has little reason to develop a new turboprop now that it is in a monopoly position. This could change if Embraer proceeds with its concept for a new family of two turboprops, a 70- and a 90-seat aircraft. Embraer’s base design could form the basis of a hydrogen-burning gas turbine model in the future.