Avanti Evo Debuts At LABACE

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The Italian planemaker Piaggio has been producing its distinctive Avanti twin turboprop for years, but now, fortified with new ownership and investment from Abu Dhabi, the company has introduced a new version, the Evo. The Evo is on display for the first time outside Europe this week at the Latin American Business Aviation Convention and Expo in Brazil. Changes in the new model include redesigned engine nacelles, a reshaped forward wing, and winglets for the main wing. New five-blade Hartzell scimitar propellers reduce noise both inside the cabin and outside. The cabin also got an upgrade, with newly designed seats, air conditioning and lighting. First delivery is scheduled for October.

Mubadala Development Company took on 98 percent ownership of Piaggio Aero Industries in May. Piero Ferrari retains a 1.95 percent interest. The new owners have invested in a new "center of aviation excellence" under construction in Villanova d'Albenga, Italy. "The new vision of Piaggio Aero is maintaining its role as a global brand in business aviation and to become a prominent player in the surveillance and security sector producing leading edge Unmanned Aerial Systems and world class Multirole Patrol Aircraft," the company said in a news release. The company is working on two new ISR (intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) aircraft programs: the P.1HH HammerHead and the Piaggio Aero MPA Multirole Patrol Aircraft.