An engine upgrade for the King Air 350 by Blackhawk Modifications, based in Waco, Texas, is now certified by the FAA, the company announced this week. The upgrade package includes two factory-new Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-67A engines, plus two new five-blade composite propeller assemblies and spinners from MT Propellers. Training, support and a warranty also are included. The modified aircraft gains 40 knots for a maximum cruise speed of 340 knots at 28,000 feet, the company said. “Our tests have shown that the XP67A-powered King Air 350 can fly from sea level to 35,000 feet in just 18 minutes,” said Jim Allmon, CEO of Blackhawk. “This is the fastest King Air on the planet.” The extra power appeals to operators who use hot and high airports, the company said. The modifications also boost gross weight by 2,000 pounds.
The company said it has about a dozen orders so far for the modification package. Blackhawk now is working on a new modification program, equipping a King Air 350ER with the XP67A engine, and expects certification for that aircraft at 16,500 pounds maximum takeoff weight later this year. The final phase of the project will consist of certifying a King Air 300 with the XP67A engine plus other upgrades, starting early next year.