BEIJING, May 19 (Xinhua) -- China has delivered more than 100 domestically-produced MA60 and MA600 turboprop planes, including 57 to overseas customers, according to the developer on Saturday.
By the end of April, the delivered MA60 and MA600 have undertaken more than 420,000 ups and downs, with their total flight hours reaching 460,000, said the state-owned Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC).
To date, they are operating on about 300 air routes, and have transported more than 11 million passengers.
Developed by AVIC Xi'an Aircraft Industry (Group) Company Ltd. (AVIC XAC), the MA60 and MA600 turboprop aircraft is designed to operate regional commercial flights, and some have been modified to undertake cloud seeding operations.
As the first model in the MA series, the MA60 was the first short-range regional turboprop aircraft made in China in line with international airworthiness criteria. It was designed for short airstrips. The MA600 is an upgrade version of this model.
The AVIC XAC is currently developing the next model in the MA series, the MA700, which is now in the detailed design phase and its maiden flight is expected by 2019.
Designed to be a high-speed turboprop regional aircraft, the MA700 has received 185 intent orders from 11 domestic and foreign customers.