Italy-based aerospace company Leonardo has announced that it has begun final testing on the upgraded version of its C-27J Spartan twin-engine turboprop. According to the company, the next generation Spartan will feature new equipment, a new avionics system and performance gains including improved climb capabilities and a maximum takeoff weight increase. The new configuration will also be offered as a retrofit upgrade for existing C-27Js.
“The enhanced C-27J brings the unrivaled quality and capabilities of the Spartan to the next, higher level,” said Marco Zoff, managing director of Leonardo’s aircraft division. “Its operators will benefit from modern avionics, increased performance and efficiency. The Spartan embodies the essence of national security, proving to be the best asset for armed forces’ defence operations and for their fundamental contribution to population support and disaster relief.”
The Rolls-Royce AE2100-D2AC-27J-powered Spartan is a multi-role transport designed for missions such as tactical support, humanitarian assistance, VIP transport, firefighting and search and rescue. The new Spartan has a top cruise speed of 325 knots, maximum payload of 25,574 pounds and is capable of carrying up to 60 troops in a high-density configuration. Leonardo reports that it has orders from 16 operators for a total of 87 next generation C-27Js with the first of the new models scheduled to go to an undisclosed customer in 2021.