The 2018 year-end results from the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) reveal that global aircraft shipments increased 4.7% to 2,443 units in 2018, with billings up 1.5%, from US$20.2bn to US$20.6bn. Meanwhile, rotorcraft shipments were up 5.4%, from 926 to 976 units, but billings decreased by 0.7%.
Notably, piston aircraft deliveries increased by 5% to 1,139 units, turboprop aircraft shipments increased to 601 units, and business jet deliveries rose from 677 to 703 units. There were 281 piston rotorcraft deliveries, compared with 264 in 2017. Preliminary turbine rotorcraft delivery data shows a 5% increase to 695 shipments.
“This is the first year since 2013 that we’ve seen all segments up in deliveries,” said Pete Bunce, president and CEO at GAMA.
“New certifications over the last two years, especially in the lighter jet segments, as well as demand in North America are driving the business jet shipment increase. This is also the second consecutive year in which shipments of piston and turbine rotorcraft are up, driven by the introduction of new models to the market.”
“While impacts of the US partial government shutdown are still being felt and assessed, we remain optimistic given recent type certifications and other certifications in the product queue that bode well for the large aircraft segment to continue its strength,” said Bunce.
“Also encouraging is the demand for specific aircraft types we’re seeing in North America, the Asia-Pacific and the Middle East and Africa regions.”