Jets: 1 Embraer, 2 Gulfstream, 3 Dassault, 4 Textron, 5 Bombardier. Turboprops: 1 Pilatus, 2 Daher TBM, 3 Textron, 4 Piper.
Embraer wins back 1st place in the jet division. Pilatus retains 1st place in TP support for 19 consecutive years. Results are based on 1041 line evaluations and 1175 survey forms received.
Pro Pilot staff report
Data compiled by Conklin & de Decker
Product support at the highest levels of quality is the key for OEMs to succeed with aircraft operators.
Their continued support allows operators to plan and achieve all missions, from the simple ones to the most demanding ones.
Operators can conduct their business with confidence knowing that they can rely on adequate OEM support at all times. Aircraft manufacturers understand the need to assist users of their products and solve problems with minimal or no interruption in their activities.
Aftersale product support is a decisive factor for operators and influences their next aircraft purchase.
Since aircraft are important tools for companies to accomplish their missions, OEMs continue to develop and employ advanced technologies in creating new aircraft models that meet or exceed operator requirements.
Providing exceptional OEM product support is an essential part of this philosophy.
Embraer regains the crown it earned in 2018 and 2016. Its overall score this year is 8.76 – up from 8.16 last year. Embraer places first in all categories of the survey, earning the biggest category increase in cost of parts with 7.92 this year – up from 7.03 in 2019.
This 0.89 increase is the largest in the entire survey. Embraer’s Contact Center is ready to give operators superior personalized support 24/7. Gulfstream moves up to take the 2nd place – the same as in 2018. The company’s overall score is 8.25 this year – up 0.11 from 8.14 in 2019.
Gulfstream is 2nd in all categories except cost of parts. Biggest improvements are in tech manuals and tech reps, with a score increase of 0.23 in both categories. Together with its technicians, service centers, and FAST (Field and Airborne Support Teams), Gulfstream is ready to ensure a flawless flying experience.
Dassault ranks 3rd this year after being 1st in 2019. Its overall score is 8.22 this year compared to 8.26 in 2019. It takes 2nd place in cost of parts, and 3rd in all other categories. Best improvement is seen in cost of parts, with a score of 6.61 this year – up from 6.53 in 2019.
Dassault’s FalconResponse program of AOG support services provides the parts, tools, and engineering resources to enable AOG situations to be resolved quickly.
Textron (including Citation and Hawker Beechcraft) remains 4th this year, with an overall score of 7.67 – down from 7.80 in 2019. Textron is 3rd in cost of parts, with a score of 6.24 – up from 6.14 in 2019.
Textron 1CALL provides immediate AOG support when an unscheduled maintenance event occurs and, together with its MSU (Mobile Service Units), coordinates with the service network to get operators back in the air promptly.
Bombardier places 5th this year, with an overall score of 7.51 – slightly down from 7.52 in 2019. It takes the 4th spot in cost of parts and tech reps. Best category increase is in tech reps, with an 8.56 score – up 0.11 from 8.45 in 2019.
Bombardier CRC (Customer Response Centre) can be reached 24/7 worldwide and provides immediate support for Learjets, Challengers, and Global aircraft.
Pilatus keeps the crown in the TP division for the 19th consecutive year since TPs were split out from jets in 2002. Overall score is 8.74 this year – up from 8.45 in 2019. Pilatus places 1st in spares availability, cost of parts, and service satisfaction, and 2nd in company response time, speed in AOG service, tech manuals, and tech reps.
Best category increase is in speed in AOG service, with an 8.80 score this year compared to 8.10 in 2019 – up 0.70. Operators can contact Pilatus Customer Support & Enquiries 24/7. Daher TBM ranks 2nd for 12th year, with an overall score of 8.73 in 2020 – up from 8.30.
They take 1st place in response time, speed in AOG service, tech manuals, and tech reps, and 2nd in spares availability and service satisfaction.
Greatest category improvement is in speed in AOG service, with 8.86 this year – up 0.60 from 8.26 in 2019. TBM Care provides 24/7 hot lines for AOG and customer care worldwide.
Daher offers its TBM Total Care Program (TCP) for every new TBM 940/910 as part of the purchase package, giving the initial retail owner of a TBM complimentary scheduled maintenance for the first 5 years or 1000 hrs of operation with the aircraft. Textron (King Air, Caravan, Conquest) ranks 3rd this year, with overall score 7.87 – up 0.24 from 7.63 in 2019.
Textron is 3rd in all categories except cost of parts and service satisfaction. Biggest advance for Textron TP was in the speed in AOG category, where it earned an 8.19 score, increasing 0.75 from last year’s 7.44. Textron’s 1CALL program, together with its MSUs and service network, are ready to service turboprops wherever they’re located.
Piper has come back strongly, rounding out the survey by placing 4th with an overall score of 7.68. Piper is 2nd in cost of parts and 3rd in service satisfaction. The company is committed to providing operators with the necessary service and support to enable safe and successful operations.
For the past 30 years Pro Pilot has used a paper questionnaire to ask corporate turbine aircraft operators to rate the quality of aftersale service provided by aircraft manufacturers. The use of electronic forms has been emphasized this year.
For 19 years jet and turboprop aircraft support have been rated in different divisions. There are 7 categories listed on the survey form—company response time, spares availability, cost of parts, speed in AOG service, tech manuals, tech reps, and service satisfaction.
During Apr 2020 a target mailing of 8116 survey forms was sent out to a random selection of corporate operators from the Pro Pilot subscription list. A total of 1175 survey forms, representing a 14.5% return, came back to the Pro Pilot office by the July 27 cutoff date.
A total of 890 were properly filled out, providing 1041 line evaluations with 845 for the jet division and 196 for the turboprop division. A total of 285 forms were disqualified due to inconsistencies, errors, duplications, or lateness.
On March 14th 2014, Textron acquired Beech Holdings LLC, the parent company of Beechcraft Corp, and it brought together Cessna and Hawker Beechcraft under 1 entity, Textron Aviation. Pro Pilot’s policy is to continue to rate newly-acquired product lines separately for 3 years.
Therefore, Cessna and Hawker Beechcraft are rated together under Textron for the 3rd year. Pro Pilot rules for the 2020 survey required a minimum of 100 evaluations to rank in the jet division. There were 5 manufacturers that met the criteria—Bombardier, Dassault, Embraer, Gulfstream and Textron (Citation, Beechjet and Hawker).
There were other manufacturers that received responses but not enough to rank in the division: Airbus (1), Boeing (7), British Aerospace (1), Cirrus (3), Eclipse (2), HondaJet (8), Pilatus (4), Sabreliner (4), and Worthington Aviation/Westwind (2).
For the turboprop division, manufacturers needed 17 responses for inclusion. Only 4 TP aircraft manufacturers met the criteria – Daher, Pilatus, Piper, and Textron (Caravan, Conquest, and King Air). Other TP manufacturers that didn’t receive enough responses to rank in the survey were Aero Commander (4), Bombardier (1), Fairchild/Swearingen (1), Mitsubishi (6), and Piaggio (2).
Survey respondents were asked to rate corporate aircraft OEMs on a scale of 1 (poor) to 10 (excellent) within each of the 7 categories. Conklin & de Decker, a JSSI company, acted as research agent and performed independent data analysis.