Saab 2000

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Saab 2000
Darwin Airline SB20 HB-IZH.jpg
Darwin Airline Saab 2000
Role Passenger aircraft
Manufacturer Saab
First flight 26 March 1992
Introduction 30 August 1994
Status In service
Primary users Braathens Regional
Darwin Airline
Eastern Airways
Loganair
Produced 1992–99
Number built 63
Developed from Saab 340

The Saab 2000 is a twin-engined high-speed turboprop airliner built by Saab. It was designed to carry 50-58 passengers and cruise at a speed of 665 km/h (413 mph). Production took place in Linköping in southern Sweden. The Saab 2000 first flew in March 1992 and was certified in 1994. The last aircraft was delivered in April 1999, a total of sixty-three aircraft being built and thirty-three remaining in service as of July 2013.[1]

Development and Design[edit]

Saab 2000 of CityJet at Dublin operating a scheduled service to London City in August 1998
Swiss HB-IZX Saab 2000 cockpit
Interior of a Darwin Airlines Saab 2000

Saab decided to build the 2000 in December 1988 due to perceived demand for a high-speed turboprop which could approach the speeds of jet aircraft while retaining the efficiency provided by turboprop engines. The company had previously introduced the smaller Saab 340 twin-turboprop aircraft. The Saab 2000 first flew on 26 March 1992 and entered into scheduled airline service in 1994, a few months after its certification by the Joint Aviation Authorities in March and the Federal Aviation Administration in April.

The Saab 2000 had a 15% greater wingspan than the Saab 340, and being over 24 ft. 9 in. (7.55m) longer could fit up to 58 passengers. The 2000 was the first commercial aircraft to use the 4,591shp Rolls-Royce AE 2100 turboprop engines (then built by Allison), driving slow turning six-bladed Dowty Rotol propellers. One engine was mounted on each wing, as in the 340, with the engines placed further from the fuselage than those of the 340 to reduce cabin noise.

Operational history[edit]

Sales of the Saab 2000 were fairly limited. The major initial customer was Crossair, a regional airline which had Swissair as a 56% shareholder. Crossair took delivery of 34 aircraft and was still operating the type in 2005. Due to limited demand, Saab ceased production of the Saab 2000 in 1999, with the last aircraft being delivered to Crossair on 29 April of that year.[2] General Motors (GM) operated several corporate-configured Saab 2000s and was in talks with new startup air carrier Pro Air to have this airline operate them in scheduled service as Pro Air Express in the U.S.; however, Pro Air then encountered financial difficulties and ceased all operations before the deal could be consummated.

By the year 2013, 57 Saab 2000 aircraft remained in service. The primary reason for the low sales was the success of newly introduced regional jets such as the Bombardier CRJ and Embraer ERJ 145 family which provided better performance and passenger comfort for the same initial price. Some smaller airlines, including Eastern Airways in the UK, have subsequently acquired 2000s at low cost and operated them on regional routes which experience lower passenger numbers.

In June 2006, Pakistan completed the purchase of six Saab 2000 turboprop aircraft to be equipped with the Saab-Ericsson ERIEYE Airborne Early Warning system. Revised in May 2007 due to renegotiation with the Government of Pakistan, only five aircraft will be delivered, four of which will be equipped with the Erieye system. On 3 April 2008, the first Saab 2000 Erieye AEW&C was rolled out and presented to Pakistan Air Force officials during a ceremony in Sweden.[3]

Variants[edit]

Operators[edit]

Civilian operators[edit]

Saab 2000 of Golden Air (now named Braathens Regional)
Polet Airlines Saab 2000

As of July 2013, a total of 33 Saab 2000s remained in airline service, operated by:[1]

Accidents and incidents[edit]

  • On 10 July 2002, Crossair Flight 850, a Saab 2000, was forced to make an emergency landing at Werneuchen Airfield, Germany, as a result of severe weather. One of the sixteen passengers on board suffered minor injuries. The aircraft, registered as HB-IZY, was damaged beyond economic repair when it hit an earth bank placed across the runway, the markings of which did not conform to standards.[4]
  • On 16 August 2012, a Saab 2000 AEW&C from the Pakistan air force was destroyed when the base Kamra came under attack. Two other aircraft was also so damaged. [5]

Specifications[edit]

Data from Brassey's World Aircraft & Systems Directory 1999/2000[6]

General characteristics

Performance

Avionics

  • Rockwell Collins Pro Line 4 avionics suite with integrated avionics processor (IAP)

See also[edit]

Related development
Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era
Related lists

References[edit]

  • Lambert, Mark. Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1993–94. Coulsdon, UK: Jane's Data Division, 1993. ISBN 0-7106-1066-1.
  • Taylor, Michael J. H. Brassey's World Aircraft & Systems Directory 1999/2000. London: Brassey's, 1999. ISBN 1-85753-245-7.
  • "World Airliner Census". Flight International, Volume 184, Number 5403, 13–19 August 2013, pp. 40–58.

External links[edit]