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Is The ATR-42 Faster Than The A-320?

Sat Apr 09, 2005 1:19 am

Checking TACA's routes and schedules today i see that the TGU-SAP flights are 40 minutes on an ATR and 47 on the A-320 can this be right?.
Taca Intl Airlines
TA 703 OP Toncontin (TGU), Tegucigalpa, Honduras 07:50
Ramon Villeda Morales (SAP), San Pedro Sula, Honduras 08:30
ATR 0:40 Daily

Taca Intl Airlines
TA 390 OP Toncontin (TGU), Tegucigalpa, Honduras 10:10
Ramon Villeda Morales (SAP), San Pedro Sula, Honduras 10:57
320 0:47 Daily

[Edited 2005-04-08 18:20:45]
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RE: Is The ATR-42 Faster Than The A-320?

Sat Apr 09, 2005 1:21 am

well on short routes, all turbo props are probably faster as the A320 probably can't fly fast in such a short period.. also a ATR is easier to fit in the landing row than an A320  Wink
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RE: Is The ATR-42 Faster The A-320?

Sat Apr 09, 2005 1:22 am

The overall flight profile on short-segments may be quicker on certain turboprops than jets on short stage lengths. That being said the A320 is much quicker than the ATR in straight and level flight.
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RE: Is The ATR-42 Faster Than The A-320?

Sat Apr 09, 2005 1:30 am

Turboprops can't fly as high as jets. On short routes props can reach their normal cruising altitude and reach their normal cruising speed.
Jets can't reach their normal cruising altitute on short routes and can't reach their normal cruising speed, because they fly lower... That's why.
But on such short routes, 7 minutes is a lot... It also depends on what time of day these flights are. if they are scheduled to arrive at a very busy time, the approach delays are calculated into the flight time.
And also, as someone said, props can be "brought down" quicker than big jets.

Just guessing here, maybe someone has real insight.
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RE: Is The ATR-42 Faster Than The A-320?

Sat Apr 09, 2005 1:31 am

Thanks for the answers guys.

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RE: Is The ATR-42 Faster Than The A-320?

Sat Apr 09, 2005 1:40 am

The distance between TGU and SAP is only 107 miles. The maximum cruise speed of the A-320 is not a factor on this routing, and the times are gate to gate times and not flight times. The ATR can fly a tighter pattern, and get into the airport easier.
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RE: Is The ATR-42 Faster Than The A-320?

Sat Apr 09, 2005 1:51 am

I flew MGA-SJO on the ATR and I felt it took for ever!!! (about an hour)
I flew the same route on a 319 and it took about 45min. I think if you look at TA's schedule the ATR flights (at least the SJO-MGA route) are programmed about 15 min longer the the buses.

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RE: Is The ATR-42 Faster Than The A-320?

Sat Apr 09, 2005 4:09 am

I think it's because they take the actual flying time for turboprops while they add 15 minutes for jet as they have to connect jetways, probably more taxi times to the gate or the end of the runway while a turboprop can sneak on a shortcut to the runway.
In december I flew SAP-TGU on a 727 and that took 21 minutes (I log the time actually with the wheels off the ground).
On the way back I took a BAe-748 turboprop and it was 38 minutes instead. The difference was also because we had to approach SAP oversea and we had headwinds, while the first flight was straight, but still I believe it makes a difference if you have a prop or a jet.
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RE: Is The ATR-42 Faster Than The A-320?

Sat Apr 09, 2005 4:37 am

Forget the ATR-42 -- the Dash 8Q400 is the master at this one. It can beat a jet's gate-to-gate for trips of 500 nm or less, and stays competitive up to about 750 nm. After that the jet's higher cruise comes into effect. Q400 climbs like a rocket and cruises at 350 kt., which is considerably faster than any of the ATR variants.
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RE: Is The ATR-42 Faster Than The A-320?

Sat Apr 09, 2005 4:45 am

Think of a race between a high powered European sports car (let's say a Ferrari) and a motor scooter such as a moped.

On an unrestricted long-distance road such as the Autobahn system, obviously the Ferrari will blow the moped off the road (hopefully not hurting the rider!!).

But put both vehicles in urban city traffic, however, and it will be a dead heat. Both are subject to the same speed restrictions, and in reality, the moped might have the advantage, being able to maneuver more easily around obstacles AND will definitely use less gas.

The same logic applies here. A passenger jetliner, while MUCH faster on longer distance routes, cannot climb, cruise, and descend efficiently in such a short time. It would have to fly at the same altitude as the ATR-42, and at lower altitudes away from airports, there will be speed restrictions.
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