First-quarter sales of general aviation aircraft demonstrate that, while the market appears to be stabilizing, the industry "is far from a recovery," the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) said this week.
GAMA reported that during the first quarter of this year, worldwide GA airplane deliveries totaled 390 units, a 15 percent drop from the same period last year. "However, this is an improvement over the dramatic decline experienced in first quarter 2009 deliveries as compared to first quarter 2008," the association said.
Total industry billings grew 7.1 percent in the first three months of 2010 to $4.64 billion due to international deliveries of large cabin, long-range airplanes where customers rely less on third-party financing than the remainder of the industry, GAMA reported. First-quarter billings in 2010 are still 12.6 percent below this same period in 2008.
Sales of piston airplanes declined 7.3 percent in the first quarter, with 166 units delivered compared with 179 airplanes in the first three months of 2009. The turboprop segment delivered 60 units, down from 89 units during the same period in 2009 for a 32.6 percent decrease. Business jet shipments fell 14.1 percent in the first quarter with 164 airplanes delivered, compared with 191 business jets in the first quarter of 2009.