ATR, a French-Italian aircraft manufacturer, announced its ATR 72-600F regional freighter’s successful first flight as the company begin to gear up for deliveries.
The aircraft took off from Sain-Martin in Toulouse, France, at 2 PM September 16, 2020, and performed a two hour flight, during which the onboard crew ran a number of diagnostic tests to measure the ATR’s flight envelope and performance.
The ATR 72-600F will have a wide cross section and a large cargo door that allows transportation of bulk cargo and industry-standard pallets and containers, the manufacturers statement read. The aircraft will also come equipped with the latest avionics suite, designed to accommodate regular future updates.
ATR’s new freighter is set to enter service in 2020 and FedEx would be the first to receive it. The courier currently has 30 of the aircraft on order, plus 20 options, placed back in November 2017.
The ATR 72-600F will have a maximum structural payload of 8.9 tonnes (19,600 lbs) and a cargo volume space of 75.5 cubic meters (2,666 cubic feet). The aircraft is about 6 times smaller than a Boeing 767 Freighter, but provides the capacity for smaller regional deliveries.