When Piper announced that it was working on the certification of a new turboprop single, to be named the M600 in a renaming move by the Vero Beach, Florida plane maker, the question was, would it be a simple upgrade to the company’s entry-level Meridian?
Piper announced earlier this week that it had earned FAA certification for the M600, and in a timely fashion, too. Every new airplane program—and the M600 features an all-new wing—carries with it a high degree of risk, but based on the results, Piper managed that risk very successfully in bringing the new model to the finish line.
The new plane is a big upgrade to the Meridian and allows Piper to take ownership of a new market niche for a turboprop single at the sub-$3 million ($2.85 million, to be exact) slot. While the 330-knot Daher TBM 900/930 is more than 50 knots faster, the French model costs more than a million dollars more, and the M600 features a cabin that’s comparable in size and amenities to the TBM. At nearly 1,500 nm, the M600 is by far the longest-legged Piper turboprop single yet, and at 275 knots true, it’s 25 knots faster than its far less capable hangar mate, the M500, nee Meridian.
The new wing is the key to the whole thing working out. With the bigger, beefier wing, the M600 gets more fuel, higher weight-carrying capability and slicker aerodynamics, all of which equate to better utility and performance. When coupled to an extra 100 shp out of the Pratt & Whitney PT6 turboprop that powers it (600 shp compared to 500 shp for the M500), the M600 offers a lot of additional payload, something Meridian owners (and prospects) have been asking for since it came to market.
Learn more at piper.com.