Turn of the turboprop

FedEx Express Airlines has received the production ATR 72-600 Freighter. Mark Broadbent examines the new variant and considers the long-term prospects for the manufacturer’s aircraft and the wider turboprops market

FedEx currently has 30 ATR 72-600 Freighters on order 
All photos ATR

Freighter conversion programmes for ATR turboprop airliners have been possible from the manufacturer and third-party conversion specialists for many years, but the ATR 72-600 Freighter is the first production model to be made available. The initial ATR 72-600F, EI-GUL (c/n 1653), was handed over to FedEx Express on December 15 last year, the first in a firm order for 30 examples, plus options for 20 more, placed by the freight giant at the time of the model’s launch in 2017.

Cargo upswing

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