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Should Saab Re-enter As A Turboprop Manufacturer?  
User currently offlineOyKIE From Norway, joined Jan 2006, 2751 posts, RR: 4
Posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 7877 times:

I have been thinking about this for a while. The SAAB 2000 was a modern plane and faster than the Q400 and even had the same noise reduction system as the Q400. The SAAB 2000 was killed of by timing. By the time it entered service in 1994 everyone was buying Regional Jets. This made the SAAB 2000 quite unpopular. However, today with the environmental focus and the huge orders for the Q400 and the ATR-72 it seems like the SAAB 2000 could have a fairly chance in today's market. The 3 abreast cabin is 2,2 meters wide. Almost as wide as the 4 abreast Q400 at 2,5 meters. What are your thoughts? Would the SAAB 2000 and perhaps a stretched SAAB 3000 with 70 passengers have a change in today's market?


Dream no small dream; it lacks magic. Dream large, then go make that dream real - Donald Douglas
50 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinePar13del From Bahamas, joined Dec 2005, 7202 posts, RR: 8
Reply 1, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 7852 times:

If SAAB wants to re-enter the market they need to design a new a/c, simply redoing what was already done will not garner the orders a business really wants. Look at the Q400, it is gaining orders essentially because nothing else is around, it is too long and narrow.

The cabin should at least support 2,2, have decent size overhead bins to cater for the extra luggage taken onboard, more sound dampning material within the walls, improved engines, bigger fuse to accomodate more luggage and you can have an a/c which would give the ATR's and Q400 more competition, just remember, who has decided that the sweet spot for turbo is 70 pax, in the Caribbean for example, 70 pax are overkill for some of our domestic routes, 50 works fine, and due to the economics, gives an a/c that can be used on all route all year round.


User currently offlineEWRandMDW From United States of America, joined Jul 2006, 416 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 7846 times:

I think it would be interesting to have another high speed turboprop in service. Could the 2000's fuselage be widened for 4-across seating to increase capacity from 50 seats to 66 or so and extended to accommodate 80 or more passengers? What I don't know is how quickly SAAB could design and retool it's facility to manufacture such an aircraft. I'm not certain, but weren't there some reliability issues with the SAAB 2000 that kept new orders from coming in once the plane was in service? I'm sure the desire to become "pure jet" regional airlines wasn't the only reason production was stopped.

By the way, how much faster was the 2000 compared to the Q400?selage


User currently offlineVfw614 From Germany, joined Dec 2001, 4003 posts, RR: 5
Reply 3, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 7732 times:

The 50 seater market is more or less dead. Fokker 50, Saab 2000 and ATP gone, Q300 now also cancelled and the ATR42 only selling in very small numbers. The future - for the time being - appears to be the 70-90 seat market.

User currently offlineEMBQA From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 9364 posts, RR: 11
Reply 4, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 7670 times:



Quoting OyKIE (Thread starter):
The SAAB 2000 was killed of by timing

The Saab 2000 was killed by Saab. Had they gone forward with the design it would have been out on the market about two years early. It would have won over many airlines and I think would still be being produced today. Saab wanted a powered rudder and took the delay to get it...and in the long run killed the 2000. It's a fantastic airplane....super fast and like the 340, built like a tank. Saab builds a great airplane.



"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
User currently offlineKarlB737 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 3105 posts, RR: 10
Reply 5, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 7593 times:

Should Saab Re-enter As A Turboprop Manufacturer?

Yes, but getting them to do it is another matter.............

What would be their motivation? To make a profitable airliner where current choices are few.

What should be their motivation -- Compete with a better aircraft that will serve a need to airlines when fuel is expensive and cheap.


User currently offlinePlanemaker From Tuvalu, joined Aug 2003, 6183 posts, RR: 34
Reply 6, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 7444 times:



Quoting OyKIE (Thread starter):
The SAAB 2000 was a modern plane

Unfortunately it arrived too late on the market... and it was killed because BBD made the RJ too attractive - in every way, but most importantly, in financing.

Quoting OyKIE (Thread starter):
he SAAB 2000 was a modern plane and faster than the Q400

Yes, at max speed... but only by 10 knots.

Quoting OyKIE (Thread starter):
and even had the same noise reduction system as the Q400.

The 2000 used only a sound system (similar to noise cancelling headphones) while the Q400 uses tuned dampers... quite a difference.

Quoting KarlB737 (Reply 5):
What would be their motivation? To make a profitable airliner where current choices are few.

Even with just two manufacturers there is almost no market for 50-seat TPs. It just isn't worth it from a business case... especially with only one aircraft offering.



Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind. - A. Einstein
User currently offlineGSPSPOT From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3034 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 7318 times:

Sad.... The "big" Saab was a very nice plane to look at. Wouldn't mind seeing them on approach over my house!


Finally made it to an airline mecca!
User currently offlineAvt007 From Canada, joined Jul 2000, 2132 posts, RR: 5
Reply 8, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 7301 times:

I saw the SAAB on a sales tour through YVR. I worked on Dash 8s at the time, and the SAAB seemed cramped and claustrophobic in comparison. I don't think pax would like it as much as the Q400 due to the cabin size alone.

User currently offlineKeesje From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 7258 times:

I think there is a market for a super efficient 40-60 seater for flights up to 800 nm.

It should be at least 20-25% more fuel efficient and much quiter and practicle then current aircraft like ATR's, Bombardier and F50 that their roots a long time ago. All new engines, props, cross sections etc. 3-4 abreast seems logical. High speed (Saab 2000) tumbles down the priority list when fuel goes north of $100 again.

So an all new super efficient aircraft for regional / feeder flights. Saab would need to partner.

I did a 5 abreast super efficient 80-100 seater not so long ago..


http://www.airliners.net/aviation-forums/tech_ops/read.main/232592/


User currently offlineJBo From Sweden, joined Jan 2005, 2343 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 7177 times:

I think there is still a market for 50-seat and smaller aircraft if they're modern.

Saab built solid aircraft, but I think they would have to come up with a new design, if for no other reason than the tooling for the current models has long since been struck.

If they were to start production, it'd be from the ground up, so they might as well start with a new design.

I've said the same thing about 19-seat aircraft. The 1900D is pretty much the only player left, and there are only so many of those to go around, and they're in high demand in some parts of the country. Beech could simply restart production with a modernized "1900E" featuring a glass cockpit and other technological improvements that have been introduced to the King Air (since the King Air family is still in production, and being so closely related to the 1900, chances are most - if not all - the tooling still exists).

Or, someone could start with a clean-sheet design with a larger cabin design for more room, possibly including overhead bins, and the aircraft could be built with lighter-weight composites and other materials and this theoretical new 19-seater could have as good, if not better, performance and economics than the 1900D and be more comfortable.



I'd take the awe of understanding over the awe of ignorance any day.
User currently offlineEXAAUADL From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 7047 times:



Quoting Keesje (Reply 9):
I think there is a market for a super efficient 40-60 seater for flights up to 800 nm.

I think so too and the Saab 2000 might be good. Dont get complacent about $40 oil. The US is printing so much money that oil will be $200 by 2012


User currently offlineAlessandro From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 6969 times:

No they won´t. 10 years since the stopped the 2000 and I don´t think they like to lose money again.

[Edited 2009-01-02 15:06:00]

User currently offlineOdysseus9001 From United States of America, joined Oct 2008, 135 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 6906 times:



Quoting Keesje (Reply 9):
I think there is a market for a super efficient 40-60 seater for flights up to 800 nm.

It should be at least 20-25% more fuel efficient and much quiter and practicle then current aircraft like ATR's, Bombardier and F50 that their roots a long time ago. All new engines, props, cross sections etc. 3-4 abreast seems logical. High speed (Saab 2000) tumbles down the priority list when fuel goes north of $100 again.

So an all new super efficient aircraft for regional / feeder flights. Saab would need to partner.

I did a 5 abreast super efficient 80-100 seater not so long ago..

Nice! Is a 20-25% improvement/quieter relative to current aircraft possible with current technology?

John


User currently offlinePlaneWasted From Sweden, joined Jan 2008, 521 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days ago) and read 6847 times:

Civil airplanes are not high tech enough for todays Saab. Their focus is now mostly on advanced defence and security products. To manufacture civil airplanes you need to be good at large manufacturing projects. I think SAAB would be a lousy civil airplane manufacturer

User currently offlineContrails From United States of America, joined Oct 2000, 1833 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days ago) and read 6819 times:

When I read posts about bringing back the props I have to wonder if there was a similar discussion in the 30's when diesel-electric locomotives were replacing steam locomotives. I wasn't around at the time, but I have a hunch the subject was discussed more than once.

Should Saab, Boeing, Lockheed, or anyone else go back to building props? The answer, imo, is an unequivocal no.

We should be looking at new technologies, fuel alternatives, and ways to get better fuel economy out of the jets we're using today. We shouldn't be using valuable resources to build outdated planes.

Steam locomotives are a part of the past. I've seen them in musems, and I appreciate their contribution to rail transportation. Props should be relegated to museums too, and as soon as possible. They should be on display where people can see them and appreciate their contribution to aviation.



Flying Colors Forever!
User currently offlineJBo From Sweden, joined Jan 2005, 2343 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 6803 times:



Quoting Contrails (Reply 15):
Should Saab, Boeing, Lockheed, or anyone else go back to building props? The answer, imo, is an unequivocal no.

We should be looking at new technologies, fuel alternatives, and ways to get better fuel economy out of the jets we're using today. We shouldn't be using valuable resources to build outdated planes.

Why do you think props are outdated?



I'd take the awe of understanding over the awe of ignorance any day.
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17039 posts, RR: 66
Reply 17, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 6796 times:



Quoting Contrails (Reply 15):
We should be looking at new technologies, fuel alternatives, and ways to get better fuel economy out of the jets we're using today. We shouldn't be using valuable resources to build outdated planes.



Quoting Contrails (Reply 15):
Props should be relegated to museums too, and as soon as possible. They should be on display where people can see them and appreciate their contribution to aviation.

I think you are misunderstanding turboprops. In no way is this technology outdated. On flights up to about 1-1½ hours, they are just about as fast as jets, while using far less fuel. The comparison to steam vs. diesel locomotives is simply not valid.

Turboprops like the Q400 are thoroughly modern machines. The engines are at the pinnacle of current turbine technology, are are no less technological marvels than contemporary turbofans.

You talk fuel economy. Turboprops are far more fuel efficient than turbofans on shorter segments. RJs don't stand a chance on flights shorter than an hour with fewer than 100 pax.

Many people see props on a plane and think this is outdated technology. But the only real similarity between a Q400 and a, say, a Lockheed Constellation is the fact that propellers are mounted. The shape of the propellers and the engines powering them are completely different. We are a long long way from piston power.



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineAvt007 From Canada, joined Jul 2000, 2132 posts, RR: 5
Reply 18, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 6774 times:

Your comparison of turbo props to steam engines is extremely flawed. You don't seem to grasp the economies and technology behind them, either. Turboprops are little more than unducted fans in many ways. Identical core technology, (turbines) better fuel burn and better performance on short haul legs, all make props superior to turbofans in their design role. How does that make them analogous to steam engines?

User currently offlineAcidradio From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 1874 posts, RR: 10
Reply 19, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 6755 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
FORUM MODERATOR

I would LOVE to see another Saab commercial product gracing the skies. What a nice bird, both the 340 and the 2000. Reliable, efficient. I wish the Saab 2000 were more of a hit, but its timing was a bit off. Had it come out in a time of real high fuel prices it would have had a market.

The whole worldwide fleet of 30-50-70 seat turboprops will all need to be replaced eventually. I think with the current economy airlines will be more likely to look for "cheaper" options where they can make them happen, so we could see at least a bit of growth in turboprops. But they will have to invent something new or really revamped with lots of amenities and features.

However, it looks like Saab has a good gig now doing military aircraft and manufacturing components for Boeing and Airbus. It almost seems unlikely that they would go back into commercial turboprops on their own volition.

(note: I loved the plane so much, I bought the car  Wink )



Ich haben zwei Platzspielen und ein Microphone
User currently offlineCadet57 From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 9085 posts, RR: 30
Reply 20, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 6742 times:



Quoting EXAAUADL (Reply 11):
The US is printing so much money that oil will be $200 by 2012

What?



Doors open, right hand side, next stop is Springfield.
User currently offlineChapavaeaa From United States of America, joined Aug 2008, 150 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 6419 times:

The 2000 is a good airplane. It was never certified for 121 operations in the US...so there are a few hurdles...but acheiveable. (It is in operation with Roush (?) and Joe Gibbs Racing under Part 91 operations).

It is quick...real quick. It will beat or match a CRJ or a EMB145 for anything up to 300 or 400 nm range in real life operations. On a run of that length for many ops the RJ will not get to optimal altitude and will be held down low due to ATC...and burn more fuel, fly slower due to ATC routing, etc. The Saab will operate in the same environment and will be much more fuel effiecient.

70 Seat aircraft....great....90 seat aircraft...great....but there is still a fundamental issue with right size for right market. Frequency sells...non-stops sell....if you can avoid a hub...all the better...I'll always put up with a little more hassle for a few dollars more if I can go non-stop when I want to go non-stop.

On the other hand, getting Saab to fire up the production line again...not sure you could get the current board of directors of Saab to go down that road again. On the other hand...if fuel does go to $200 a barrel in a few years...all bets are off...it could be off an running.

Just my thoughts


User currently offlineNorlander From Faroe Islands, joined Sep 2007, 162 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 6142 times:

IMO there is probably some discussions in and around the board room at SAAB in regards to this. They do have a healthy company at present, but their future products are not well defined.

The European defense budgets are shrinking, and a lot of consolidated companies are fighting over the same pie. SAAB is at a disadvantage there compared to EADS, BAE, Finnmeccanica etc. The Gripen is losing to the JSF and being a subcontractor to Boeing is not secure work in the current economic environment. So the company needs to secure their future line of products. This includes not just having the best product, but also the ability to sell it in a market place crowded by bigger and better connected competitors.

The commercial aviation division is a possible solution, but then they need to team up with somebody that can do the heavy work. Kawasaki Heavy Industries would be a good partner IMO - with a work agreement a kin to the one between Sony and Ericsson in the mobile phone market. Furthermore there <70 seater market isn't without new products, ATR is doing a new generation of their 42 and 72 series, and it remains to be seen how high the bar is set by this new generation of airplanes.



Longtime Lurker
User currently offlineChapavaeaa From United States of America, joined Aug 2008, 150 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 5863 times:



Quoting Norlander (Reply 22):
The commercial aviation division is a possible solution, but then they need to team up with somebody that can do the heavy work.

I believe for both the 340 and the 2000 they teamed with CASA for the wings. For the 340 they teamed with GE for the engines and Allison for the 2000.

Of course the 340 was a joint Saab and Fairchild program at the start so they have a good history of teaming.

I agree that Kawasaki, or perhaps someone else in the Asian sector might wind up in a program with them.


User currently offlineSeabiscuit From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 39 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (5 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 5657 times:



Quoting Acidradio (Reply 19):

Imagine if Boeing or Airbus went into the Automobile market? They would put all manufactures to shame with all the flight and technical experience.



Seabiscuit
25 Starlionblue : Hmmm. Anything is possible, but if you built cars like airliners are built, they would be way too expensive to compete.
26 Post contains links and images Rikkus67 : Hey Keeje... perhaps BBD could use the Cseries fuselage, and design a new larger capacity turboprop? Along the same notion, EMB could relaunch their
27 OyKIE : I wonder about this as well. Keep the wings, and structure. Just 10 knots top speed. But I recon that having almost as powerful engines, and a lighte
28 HermansCVR580 : How about a new updated streched Convair 5800. I know that there is a company in Canada that uses former Convairs and stretches them but what if there
29 EXAAUADL : The fed has expanded the money supply by over 1 trillion dollars recently. It probably hasnt had any effect cuz money velocity is falling.
30 Doug_Or : The DHC--8-300 (this Q stuff is just silly) is plenty efficient. It is certainly slower than the 400, though. [rant] This type of statistic is comple
31 Flaps : Not to mention very heavy.
32 Norlander : Just because it hasn't had an effect at present doesn't mean it will won't have a big future impact...
33 HermansCVR580 : That is why I am saying using the Convair's design but building a totally new aircraft with the latest technologies but basing it off that style of de
34 Alessandro : Il-114 is very similar to the S2000 and it hasn´t been a bestseller, so I doubt it. BTW whom owns the design of the Convair-580, I would say Boeing?
35 Starlionblue : The car and aircraft companies are nowadays quite separate. The advertising, especially in the the US, is very "aviation" oriented though. Having sai
36 DavidByrne : Whether Saab should re-enter the TP market is not a subject that I can express an opinion on - the real question for me is "what will happen to air ro
37 Art : Enough said. If turboprops do not cost more to build or maintain than jets, the economics of turboprops are compelling. As for SAAB re-entering this
38 AirbusA6 : The RK market (70-130 seats) is getting VERY crowded now, with all the new entrants piling in (China, Japan, Russia etc) yet the TP market has been ig
39 BestWestern : The SAAB2000 was killed by its notorious unreliability.
40 Columba : Who is the owner of Saab Aircraft by the way ? I would love Saab building commercial aircraft again, the Saab 340 and 2000 are great looking aircraft.
41 Saab2000 : Really? Did you fly it? I have a couple thousand hours in the SAAB2000 and it was pretty reliable. It had developement issues, but when I was flying
42 Doona : Investor and other Wallenberg interests are the combined majority share holder. I believe that BAe Systems own 20% of the company. Edit: Investor AB
43 Chapavaeaa : OyKIE, Do you have any numbers to back up your claim? Saab overall has a pretty reliable product in the Saab 340. It had a few start up problems with
44 Oykie : You quote me incorrectly. I posted in thread starter that it was a timing issue. It was BestWestern who claimed it was unreliable. Please re-read the
45 Post contains links BestWestern : It was me claiming the unreliability of the Saab2000 fleet. The design goal for the Saab2000 was set at 99,2 % dispatch reliability, yet what killed
46 BestWestern : Very true - many people see props, and think 1940. I fly frequently (as self loading freight) on two regional european carriers that operate the Saab
47 R2rho : Saab should not compete head on against BBD or ATR, nor go at any new design alone, unless they want to go bankrupt pretty quickly. With BBD and ATR p
48 Alessandro : It´s not for free either, S2000 was quite expensive to buy. S2000 is a good aircraft with at good track record (hope this isn´t the kiss of death),
49 Chapavaeaa : Sorry Oykie, Your correct. It should have been directed to BestWestern.
50 Norlander : The know-how lives on in their military aviation division. They're still refurbishing old aircraft for military use (the Erieye AWACS aircrafts are b
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