TYPE: Twin-turboprop freighter.

PROGRAMME: IAI submission chosen in principle by Federal Express of USA against competition from Saab (Sweden) and Ayres (USA) in mid-1998 as replacement for Fokker Friendship parcel transports. FedEx purchase would be 100, but IAI is seeking further 100 sales to reduce unit price to FedEx-imposed ceiling of US$10 million. Risk-sharing partners also needed to ensure programme launch, but not obtained by early 2003. Certification and first customer deliveries scheduled for four years after launch, with initial production rate of four per month.

CURRENT VERSIONS: Two versions proposed, based on common flight deck, centre-section, outer wings and tail unit.

CUSTOMERS: Unconfirmed reports by late 1999 that FedEx requirement may have been reduced; Global Air (Leasing) Group ordered 50, with further 50 on option, in July 1999. Minimum of two or three customers in Europe and USA sought before formal launch.

COSTS: Target cost US$7 million for small version, US$9 million for large version (2002).

DESIGN FEATURES: High-wing twin-turboprop with T tail; optimised for night transport of up to three standard-size cargo containers in small version, and four in large version.

LANDING GEAR: Retractable tricycle type. Main units retract into fairings on fuselage sides.

POWER PLANT: Two 4,098 kW (5,495 shp) class turboprops (to be selected); four-blade propellers.

ACCOMMODATION: Pressurised flight deck, with forward airstair door access on port side. Unpressurised, but temperature-controlled, main cargo compartment has large port-side cargo door aft of wing. Tailcone compartment, also unpressurised, configured for carriage of hazardous materials. Main compartment can accommodate five M1 (2.44 x 2.44 m; 8 x 8 ft) cargo pallets.

SYSTEMS: Redundant fire detection and extinguishing system in tailcone compartment.