Mahindra Aerospace, which is developing the GA18, a twin turboprop, utility turboprop aircraft, is making major investments at its new 25,000 square metre manufacturing facility at Bangalore, which will start operations from April.

The facility will be used for manufacturing metal components, aircraft assemblies and aerostructures, according to Executive Director and global CEO Arvind Mehra.

“We are working to emerge as a partner of choice for global aerospace and defence (A&D) majors. We can offer them design-to-build capabilities along with financial stability,” said Mehra.

Mahindra Aerospace is the only Indian aircraft player with a portfolio of light aircraft for private-utility use, and has the GA8, GA10 and GA18 aircraft in addition to the CNM5.

The CNM5 is the first Indian plane jointly developed by CSIR-NAL, Bangalore-based and government-backed National Aerospace Laboratories, and Mahindra Aerospace. It is designed in India and built in Australia.

Mahindra also is involved in developing the GippsAero GA10 single turboprop, which is due to complete certification next year.

Overseas venture

Mahindra Aerospace acquired Australia’s Gippsland Aeronautics in December 2009. The company is expanding in North America and Europe, where it recently appointed distributors for its GA8 Airvan.

On the heels of the GA8 Airvan's 2011 circumnavigation of the earth for charity, the company shot past another milestone: Australia's highest ever production volumes for a certified aircraft.

The GA8 Airvan is the mainstay of the company’s utility aircraft portfolio.

Tie-up with US firm

Mahindra Telephonics, an upcoming joint venture between Mahindra Defence and Telephonics Corporation of the US, is also setting up a facility in Bangalore to manufacture, repair and overhaul airborne radars, aircraft communication systems, and mobile surveillance systems.

The company will provide customised solutions for border surveillance, critical infrastructure protection and air traffic management systems.

(This article was published on February 11, 2013)
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