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Dash 8 Vs ATR 42  
User currently offlineQuad Otter From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 62 posts, RR: 0
Posted (15 years 1 month 3 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 8220 times:

Looking for opinions on which is the better of the 2 aircraft.........the company I am with is looking at both types........interested in hearing from those who have flown on both to see both good and bad attributes of these regional aircraft.........personally I like the -8 better.......



27 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
User currently offlineLowfareair From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (15 years 1 month 3 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 8139 times:

I like it better, too. The ATR was a bit too noisier when I took it SJU-EIS back in '99 than the -8 on PHL-BWI a couple years ago.

One plus for the 8 is that children can see the cockpit before takeoff(Makes the children happier during the flight/builds on image), as the baggage compartment blocks it on the ATR(Correct me if I'm wrong!).

User currently offlinePanther From Bahamas, joined Jun 2000, 225 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (15 years 1 month 3 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 8114 times:

The Dash 8 is definitely the winner. Having flown on both airplanes many times, the ATR just doesn't cut it. The Dash is sleek, fast, more comfortable, and from what I have heard more reliable. I have flown on a Q200, and I could not believe how quiet the airplane was. Bombardier has truly made a superior product.

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User currently offlineTurtle From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 206 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (15 years 1 month 3 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 8115 times:

I love the Dash 8 cause, you can watch the landing gear go up, down and touch down on the runway  Big thumbs up

User currently offlineQuad Otter From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 62 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (15 years 1 month 3 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 8093 times:

Hey thanks for the input.....and the cool pictures.........I agree that the 8 is way sleeker looking.....never been on the 42, is it true all the baggage and freight ride up front with the pax in the back??


User currently offlineCRJ 900 From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 616 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (15 years 1 month 3 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 8090 times:

DASH 8 is far superior, hands down!

User currently offlineSuperfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 40298 posts, RR: 73
Reply 6, posted (15 years 1 month 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 8090 times:

I flew on a Dash 8 Island Air from Honolulu to Molokai last summer.
The flight was great and was almost as smooth as a 737.

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Bring back the Concorde
User currently offlineSamurai 777 From Canada, joined Jan 2000, 2461 posts, RR: 4
Reply 7, posted (15 years 1 month 3 weeks ago) and read 8073 times:

The Dash 8 is better able to handle harsher weather conditions than the ATR 42/72. The Dash 8 was indeed designed for Canadian winters and is more rugged, since it is a Canadian product! I've landed in Dash 8s in -45C weather, and these planes don't have any problems with that!

User currently offlineTrintocan From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2000, 3297 posts, RR: 4
Reply 8, posted (15 years 1 month 3 weeks ago) and read 8065 times:

To be fair, I have never flown in an ATR. I have ridden the Dash 8s several times. They are very smooth, comfortable and fast for turboprops. Furthermore, with the new NVS systems installed in the Q series the cabin noise and vibration are minimised. Indeed, one can sit next to the engines and hear almost nothing from them inflight.

Yes, too, the ability to see the landing gear fold and unfold is almost unique.

Overall the Dash 8 is a great plane. It is now the most popular type in the Caribbean, being flown by BWIA and its upcoming subsidiary Tobago Express, EC Xpress (a subsidiary of Air Jamaica), LIAT, Caribbean Star, Bahamasair and ALM.


Hop to it, fly for life!
User currently offlineDesertJets From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 7896 posts, RR: 14
Reply 9, posted (15 years 1 month 3 weeks ago) and read 8064 times:

I am biased in the other way, I have only flown on the ATR. Unfortunately I was seated in seat 4A, with a rather nice view of the Hamilton Standard 4 blade prop droning in my ear for 90 minutes. but the flight was very smooth, the plane felt very solid. Though I do have to think the newer anti-noise and vibration technology on the Q Series does give it a decided advantage.

Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia
User currently offlineDash8tech From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 732 posts, RR: 5
Reply 10, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 8054 times:

I'm biased towards the Dash 8. The NVS is nice, btu honsetly I've been our Q200's and Q400's and had louder flights on them every now and then than on our older -100's. A big thing is Prop-Sync for noise and vibration.


User currently offlineFokplanes From Spain, joined Oct 2000, 70 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 8046 times:

Quad Otter, So far I have only read some arguments from passenger point of view in the advantage of the Dash 8. I also think that the dash 8 is the best choice. The future of Bombardier seems better that that of the manufacterer of the ATR 42/72. Aerospatiale only produces prop acft while Bombardier has a wide range of products to offer to regional airlines. So product support, in my point of view the most important considering to buy a new acft type is more secure on the long term with Bombardier. I think that the production of the ATR 42/72 is not profitable for Aerospatiale and that therefor the ATR 42/72 series will dissipate from the market. Operators are than facing the same problem as many F50 operators: high spare parts prices etc

Best Regards,


User currently offlineWatewate From Canada, joined Nov 2000, 2284 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 8043 times:

Interesting point, Fokplanes. I agree that Bombardier has a brighter future, but ATR props still have some life left in them. India-based HAL is in position to produce ATR42 in India for domestic and foreign market. If such deal does go ahead, I would expect ATR42s production to continue for quite sometime- long enough for any potential carriers not to worry about availability of spare parts and support.
I'd take Bombardier as a pax point of view. Quiet ride. Maybe it's just me or I was just lucky to fly on clear days, but I've never felt too much vibrations flying on props- it's not even a concern (comfort wise) when I'm on a prop flight.

User currently offlineTurkair From Turkey, joined Jun 2005, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 8033 times:

On sunday, I've flown with a Dash 8 Q-400. Excelent quit and comfartable aircraft. The aircraft now owned by bombardier but still have remants Lufthansa Team Augsburg Airlines. The aircraft came to Istanbul for a demo flight. During the nice trip the speed is near to a jet for 350 knots!!! They have turned on and off the "Q" system. There is a very different for noise and vibrations. I have nefer fly with ATR but Dash 8 is very good.

User currently offlineAirmale From Botswana, joined Sep 2004, 391 posts, RR: 1
Reply 14, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 8027 times:

I havent flown either but find the Dash-8 "Aesthetically" more attractive, by the way are you from PIA because theyre considering both the Dash-8 and the ATR42 to replace their F27 fleet, hope they opt for the Dash, but isnt the ATR more successful commercially i think more airlines operate the type than the Dash-8 Smile

.....up there with the best!
User currently offlineB744F From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 8020 times:

flown both of them. the last experience was ATR42 Czech Airlines VIE-PRG and back trip was on Tyrolean Dash8 PRG-VIE. both aircraft looks to be very similar in all measurements, but Dash8 have one very big advantage: it is much more quiet.

also agree with previous statemets. ATR now is widely used by airlines, nevertheless Dash8 looks more perspective.

User currently offlineF+ Rouge From France, joined May 2000, 210 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 8006 times:


compare what is comparable. You cannot compare the ATR 42-300 with its four-blade props with the Dash 8 Q series ands its six blade props. The real competitor is the new generation ATR -500 series.

To all the others: Your posts are purely subjective and highly speculative. No facts at all: Great advantage of the Dash 8: Children can see the cockpit before take off and you can watch the landing gear go up and down!!! That's ridiculous !!

No figures or information sources are given concerning noise levels, operating costs or reliability. Panther, why is the Dash 8 a fast aircraft and more comfortable ? Have you compared the respective cabin widths, noise levels and cruising speeds of the Dash 8-300Q and the ATR 42-500 ?

The same for the speculation about ATR's future. There have been 640 ATR 42/72 aircraft ordered by more than 100 airlines !!! That is a fact.

Finally, if you had written the same subjective statements about Airbus and Boeing aircraft that would have lead into another war and been deleted by the administrator afterwards.


F+ Rouge

User currently offlineQuad Otter From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 62 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 8000 times:

I do agree with F+ Rouge that little "operational" data comparisons have been made.....but u know "R+", it is the passengers who ultimately decide what type of aircraft a company will operate.......even just based on a simple flight that was experienced, feedback from passengers is very important.....and I do suspect a little European bias here??? BTW......I think Bombardier.....aka deHavilland Canada, has about 600 Dash 8's of various series, delivered, on order and optioned......yes the ATR-42 is more popular........but not by much..........I am still interested in hearing about any operational differences between the 2.....cruise speeds, range, payload..etc...etc....



User currently offlineLowfareair From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 7991 times:

With the DHC-8, you get three sizes: 36-40 pax., 50-56 pax, and 70 pax. with the ATR, you get 46-50 pax. and 70 pax.

The max. height in the aircraft is 6'5"

Baggage load: 300cu. ft(200); 320 cu. ft(300)

Take-off length: 1000m(200);

Range: 1065sm(200);

help more later.

User currently offlineF+ Rouge From France, joined May 2000, 210 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 7985 times:

Quad Otter,

If you compare the firm orders of the ATR 42 to those of the Dash 8-300 - the -100 and -200 series not being direct competitors to the ATR 42 - the respective market shares are 65% vs 35%.

On a typical 300 nm sector in an European environment the direct operating costs of the ATR 42-500 are about 3 % lower than for the Dash 8-300. Nevertheless I admit that a DeHavilland statistic could come to other conclusions. In fact, I think that both aircraft are very cost efficient.

I do agree that passengers influence the decision of an airline what type of aircraft it will operate. But ATR has done a lot to increase passenger comfort, too, and noise reduction was a very important issue. This has been reached essentially by integrating dynamic vibration absorbers which reduce noise transmission from the engins and by the new electronically controlled six blade props. The result is a jetlike comfort for the -500 series.

Max. cruising speed of the ATR 42-500 is 300 knots, range with max. passenger payload is 840 nm, max. payload is about 5,500 kg.

Another advantage is the commonality within the ATR 42/72 family that disposes of common type rating and cross crew qualification. By the way, Samurai777, the ATR 42 has a cold weather certificate to operate at temperatures as low as -52 °C.

I do not say that the Dash 8Q performs worse because I have never been on one. I believe you when you say that you had very smooth flights operated by Dash 8 aircraft, but accept that you could have had them with ATRs, too.

And honestly, Quad Otter, isn't there a strong Canadian bias within your post ? At the end you will have to change your member profile and state that you would like to fly an ATR !!!  Wink/being sarcastic


F+ Rouge

User currently offlineQuad Otter From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 62 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 7974 times:

Yes u would have to say I am biased towards a Canadian product........as to your comparisons of market share, I see it as how u look at it (is the cup half full or half empty).....I don't know where u pulled your stats and I don't doubt they are correct.....but I know in Canada at least there are no operators of the ATR 42/72, as the last company to run them here went out of business about 2 years ago and their fleet is sitting at the Montreal Dorval airport......I think this is where the company I am with might be looking to pick them up......that is if they are cheap enough........I think one of the biggest things they are looking at right now is payload, because we fly in the arctic and we haul a mix of pax. and freight to small remote communities.....right now with HS-748's, and there really is nothing out there to compete with it for the type of work it does for us there.......not many other aircraft in the market that can haul a 10000 lb payload 600 nm, and land on a 3000' gravel strip!!! But the Hawkers are getting really old and are not the most fuel efficient aircraft and with the price of fuel these days, I think their days are numbered with us!!

And as for knowing deHavillands products, I currently fly on a Dash 7, so I do have some idea as to their types..............even if we did get ATR's, I would not want to fly it...........seems I recall a crash that resulted from an ATR42/72, holding in icing conditions, this happened about 7 years ago in the US midwest somewhere's??? Haven't heard of any Dash's going down due to ice on the wings!!!

User currently offlineATCT From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 2583 posts, RR: 34
Reply 21, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 7961 times:

Definantly the 8, the ATR cant fly in known icing conditions (at least in the US). The 8 is also a STOL aircraft. That thing lands so pretty it makes you cry.

Trikes are for kids!
User currently offlineJohnnybgoode From Germany, joined Jan 2001, 2187 posts, RR: 6
Reply 22, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 7951 times:

well, i´ve only been on one dash 8 flights and that was on Air BC from YVR to SEA two years ago. however, i didn´t like the flight very much because i thought the planes was quite loud and it was quite a bumpy ride. but that was only on flight and so i cannot really compare the dash 8. nonetheless, i don´t like the ATR 42 very much as well. i´ve been on them several times (american eagle) and although i thought i was quite a smooth ride, the plane wasn´t comfortable at all.

still, i´d prefer the Fokker 50 over the dashs and ATRs any day. it´s the rolly-royce of the turboprops!!!!  Big thumbs up


If only pure sweetness was offered, why's this bitter taste left in my mouth.
User currently offlineCle_tim From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 7953 times:

I have flown in both and I like the Dash 8 much better. The Dash8 when I flew it (Sunday) on LGA-BWI was unbelievably quiet - it was hard to tell you were riding in a turboprop. The seats were comfortable and legroom seemed the same as the 737 I flew on that same day. I don't know who commented on it, but I was right next to the landing gear - that was cool! I got to watch the gear be lowered, and even cooler, watch the gear hit the runway.

User currently offlineATRpilot From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (15 years 1 month 2 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 7956 times:

As a former ATR driver and a current Dash 8 pilot, I must say that both aircraft are nice turboprops, but the quieter and more pilot friendly dash is better in nearly every respect. It's just harder to land smoothly!


25 Lowfareair : F+rouge has a little bias. He says "Another advantage is the commonality within the ATR 42/72 family that disposes of common type rating and cross cre
26 Airbus Lover : i just wanna say that the ATRs r better in smaller airports -narrow taxiways and/or runways.
27 Quad Otter : I think not........and another thing I believe the -8's are the better aircraft when it comes to landing in a crosswind........just look at the width
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