ATR is a joint venture in which Alenia Aermacchi and EADS hold equal shares. Based in Toulouse, in France, it is the world leader in 50-70 seat turboprop regional airliners. Its ATR 42 and 72 models are the ideal solution for short routes worldwide. Its latest variant, the 600 series, is a leading-edge aircraft offering passengers greater comfort and better performance in terms of fuel consumption and the environmental friendliness expected today.
The 600 series increases the positive edge over the competition, capitalising on the unbeatable efficiency of the -500 series engines (now slightly more powerful) and on developments introduced on the last -500 series aircraft, including the Multi Purpose Computer, Electronic Flight Bag, In-Flight Entertainment and LED lighting. Several improvements have been made to cut noise and vibrations, resulting in a technologically advanced and effective acoustic treatment which offers passengers comfort comparable to a jet.
The ATR 42 and ATR 72 turboprops share the same fuselage cross-section, basic systems and cockpit and represent a safe and affordable transport solution, also because of an impeccable operating standard and a high level of cabin comfort.
The first ATR 42 prototype made its first flight in 1984. This 50-seat variant entered commercial service in December 1985. The larger and more powerful ATR 72 variant, seating 68 persons thanks to a 4.5 metre fuselage stretch, flew in 1988 and was delivered to the launch customer Finnair the following year.
The Alenia Aermacchi plant in Pomigliano d'Arco, near Naples, builds the fuselage and tail section, in part from components manufactured in the Casoria and Nola plants. The tail empennage are made and assembled in Foggia. The wings are assembled by EADS, Sogerma Services in Bordeaux and Airbus France. Final assembly, flight test, certification and delivery are the responsibility of ATR, which has four marketing and customer support centres in Toulouse, Washington, Singapore and Bangalore and five training centres in Toulouse, Houston, Bangalore, Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur, as well as two offices in Beijing and Moscow.
Over 140 operators in over 80 countries have selected the ATR, with sales close to 1,000 aircraft between the two variants. The commercial success confirms the quality of the basic design and its ability to support the continuing system and technology updates required to meet increasingly demanding operator requirements in terms of performance, efficiency and affordability.