The Beechcraft King Air 260 will have many of the same features in the cockpit as the 360. (Image: Textron Aviation)

Textron Aviation Announces Another King Air Refresh

Plus: an update on the Citation Longitude.

Textron Aviation has unveiled the Beechcraft King Air 260, the latest King Air to receive a refresh with nearly all the same new features as the King Air 360, which the Wichita, Kansas–based airframer announced in August. “We are bringing the latest technological advancements to the King Air 260 cockpit that not only bring greater ease of operation for pilots, they bring a whole new era of flying for this renowned aircraft,” said Textron Aviation senior vice president of sales and flight operations Rob Scholl during the company’s news conference at the National Business Aviation Association's virtual conference.

Like the 360's cockpit, the one in the 260 will be equipped with Innovative Solutions & Support’s (IS&S) ThrustSense Autothrottle, digital pressurization controller, and Collins Aerospace’s Multi-Scan RTA-4112 weather radar. In addition, newly designed seats created originally for the 360 through a pressure-mapping process provide a more comfortable experience on longer flights.

Production of the 260 has begun, with certification and initial deliveries expected in early 2021. The model's list price is $6.7 million.

Regarding the Cessna side of the Textron Aviation house, Scholl noted that its flagship Citation Longitude recently marked its one-year anniversary for type certification. As of the end of the third quarter, the company had delivered 22 Longitudes and the fleet had amassed more than 5,000 hours.

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Scholl added that the Longitude, along with all its other turbine aircraft, is capable of operating with sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). “And we are proud that our customers can choose to fuel with SAF when taking delivery of new Beechcraft turboprop and Cessna turboprop and jet aircraft or when departing from our Wichita service center as part of their service experience,” Scholl said.

Lastly, he explained that production line flow on the newest Cessna airplane, the SkyCourier turboprop twin, will begin in early 2021, with FAA type certification anticipated later that year.