First Flight of the Socata TBM F-WTBM

July 14, 1988, marked the first flight of the SOCATA TBM F-WTBM, the first of its prototypes.

TBM was established by the Aerospatiale General Aviation Division, Socata, and the US manufacturer Mooney, to produce a high-performance business aircraft. Performance promised by the manufacturer included taking six passengers at 345 mph (300 knots) with a full fuel load for 1,000 nautical miles (1,852 km – 1,151 miles).

Pratt & Whitney PT6A-64 engine was chosen o meet this requirement.

The flight testing proved that virtually all of the established goals of the design had been achieved, leading to quick progress towards production.

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