Piaggio Expands as Evo Certification Nears

Company branches out into three business units.

Piaggio Evo

Piaggio Evo

Piaggio Avanti Evo

At its press conference today at the NBAA Convention in Orlando, Florida, Piaggio unveiled not only a new logo, but also a new name. Rebranded as Piaggio Aerospace, the company will operate three business units. In addition to its business aviation segment, which includes the recently announced Piaggio Evo, the company will expand into engines, and surveillance and security, which will include the development of unmanned aircraft systems.

The design of the Piaggio Evo, which is a modified version of the Avanti II with winglets and new, quieter Hartzell scimitar propellers, is progressing with two airplanes involved in the certification effort. The company expects EASA certification in mid-November and plans to deliver six airplanes by May 2015. There are currently 16 airplanes on the order books.

The newly rebranded company is also getting ready for the grand opening of its new 530,000-square-foot facility located at Piaggio's 1.367-million-square-foot site at the Villanova d'Albenga airport in Italy, not far from the French border. The $200 million investment was made possible by Piaggio's new major shareholder, Abu Dhabi-based Mubadala Development Company.

Piaggio has also made improvements to its customer support network with operations 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The company offers a total care maintenance program for the Evo at a fixed cost of $235 per flight hour for the first five years or 2,000 hours of flight time. The program covers all systems, including avionics, hydraulics, electrical, landing gear, brakes, flight controls and structures.

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