As of August 2020, 3,751 engines were powering operational GA aircraft in China. Piston engines accounted for the largest market share, at 44%, followed by turboshaft engines, accounting for 28%. Turbofan and turboprop engines each accounted for 18% and 10%, respectively. Engine manufacturer, Pratt & Whitney holds the largest market share – powering 22% of the GA aircraft in Mainland China. Lycoming Engines and Continental Engine, both specializing in piston engines rank second and fourth, respectively. Rolls-Royce and Safran rank third and fifth, respectively, both manufacturing turbofans and turboshafts.
Low-power piston engines are widely used in various light and very light helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft. Lycoming ranks first in the piston engine market with a market share of 32% (526 units). Among those, there are 228 O-540 series engines mounted on Robinson R44 aircraft. Continental Engine, which was acquired by AVIC, ranks second with its O-300 series engines on the Cessna 172. Austro and Thielert ranked third and fourth, respectively, both powering Diamond Aircraft. Notably, although Rotax Engine does not have a large market share its engines power the most types of engine models. The Rotax 912 series powers 18 different very light sized GA aircraft.
In terms of turboshaft engines, Safran holds the largest market share – at 37%, reflecting the success of the Arriel series of engines. Its representative models include the H125 Squirrel and H155. Pratt & Whitney ranks second, with a market share of 28%. The PW200 series engines powers the Leonardo AW109 and H135 models, while the PT6C and PT6B series engines power the AW139 and AW119 models.
Rolls-Royce ranks first, in terms of turbofan engines, with a 40% market share. The Rolls Royce BR700 series is widely used in business jets such as the Gulfstream G550, G650/ER, Bombardier Global 6000 series. Its Tay series engines power the Gulfstream G450. Pratt & Whitney’s engine ranks second with a 23% market share. The PW300 engine series is used in the Falcon 7X. Notably, the G500 and G600, the successors of the G450 and G550, will switch from the previous Rolls-Royce engines to Pratt & Whitney’s PW800 engines. This may be an indicator of what’s to come in terms of engine manufacturer market share.
In terms of turboprops, Pratt & Whitney holds a dominant position in this market with a 95% market share. The PT6A series engines are widely used in well-known turboprop fixed-wing aircraft, including the Y 12, Cessna 208, King Air 350/C90 and Kodiak 100. Its PW100 engine is used in the Modern Ark 60/600, noted as one of the “Three Musketeers” of domestic large aircraft.
Although this sector is dominated by foreign engine manufacturers, China has put significant investment, research and development into domestic engines. GA companies, represented by AVIC, have carried out mergers and acquisitions activities internationally to promote the development of China’s aero-engine industry. With the rise of new concepts such as electric aircraft in the future, perhaps China can achieve a step up in the field of aero-dynamics.
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