"Cirrus Aircraft's annual performance was highlighted by a steady quarterly rise in airplane deliveries throughout 2012, capped off by strong year-end sales," said Todd Simmons, Executive Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Customer Support. "While we sold essentially the same number of airplanes in 2012 as the previous year, we strengthened the business through efficiency improvements and increased the value per aircraft delivered. We are continuing both these trends in the new year."
Simmons continued, "We opened 2012 with the introduction of 60/40 FlexSeating™, offering true 5-person capacity across the model line. Mid-year was highlighted by both the acceleration of the Vision SF50 Jet program and the selection of Cirrus Aircraft by the French Air Force for its training fleet. We ended the year with both strong retail sales and the completion of our most important engineering project in several years. Continuing our commitment to innovation and increasing customer value, we start 2013 by offering a game-changing 200 lbs gross weight increase for SR22 and SR22T - the single most requested improvement from our customers. It is truly the 'most Cirrus ever' and initial customer response to this next generation airplane has us even more optimistic about 2013."
The SR22/SR22T Remains The Best-Selling Aircraft in its Class for More Than 10 Consecutive Years
Cirrus experienced strengthening demand throughout 2012 as deliveries increased to 84 SR-Series airplanes in the fourth quarter. This consistent quarter-over-quarter improvement and overall steady annual demand has been unique to Cirrus since the industry downturn in late 2008. Cirrus Aircraft remains the leader in the high performance single engine piston market with SR22/SR22T share having grown to over 70 percent.
Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Total
SR20 19 15 24 26 84
SR22 13 18 15 35 81
SR22T 13 27 25 23 88
Total 45 60 64 84 253
Simmons added, "Smart small businesses are investing in growth. Many Cirrus owners use their airplane as a critical business tool and purchased a new Cirrus in 2012 - or are planning to do so in 2013 - for exactly that purpose. A Cirrus can be just as important a business asset as logistics equipment, key technology or critical personnel for example. A Cirrus enables efficient regional travel, allowing business owners to reach more customers or colleagues in a single day."
Global Fleet Growth Stands Out in 2012
Cirrus Aircraft fleet sales have been a significant source of growth with the completion of the United States Air Force Academy deliveries early in the year, the French Air Force mid-year and several other fleet deliveries throughout. This increase in fleet sales at Cirrus last year pushed market share for the SR20 to its highest in Cirrus' history¹.
Cirrus Demonstrates Manufacturing Excellence in 2012
World-class engineering, manufacturing and quality are sources of pride at Cirrus Aircraft. Cirrus understands that a partnership with the FAA is the most effective way to build new aircraft and Cirrus has fostered a proactive relationship since the beginning.
As a result of this collaborative approach, Cirrus is pleased to have not only certified its new fifth generation aircraft recently but to have enjoyed a very rare honor while doing so. The Aircraft Certification System Evaluation Program (ACSEP) is a FAA team-led evaluation that occurs every two years for this class of aircraft (14 CFR Part 21, sub-Part G.) For the first time, Cirrus earned a "perfect" score with zero non-compliance marks.
"For a company of this size and complexity, a zero non-compliance evaluation is uncommon," states Michael Coon, Quality Systems Manager at Cirrus Aircraft. "Our employees are proud to hold ourselves to the highest standards and we appreciate our partnership with the FAA."
LOOKING AHEAD: Generation 5 is "The Most Cirrus Ever"
Demand for new Cirrus aircraft has started strong in 2013. SR22's and SR22T's are "The Most Cirrus Ever" with important new customer requested innovations and capabilities now standard. These new benefits are the hallmark of the just-introduced fifth generation aircraft.
With the introduction of the 2013 Generation 5 aircraft and its increase in gross weight to 3600 lbs (1633 kg), Cirrus becomes the highest in-class useful load aircraft available today. A standard SR22 not only achieves a true "four-seat airplane that can carry four adults and full fuel," but SR22 and SR22T models now have five seats total and can carry all five FAA-standard passengers non-stop and in comfort over 700 nautical miles.
Generation 5 is the name given to the airframe change required to achieve the step-change improvement for the 2013 SR22/SR22T. The entire aircraft design was analyzed from spinner-to-tail and many parts and systems reengineered and redesigned to accommodate the increased airframe load, aerodynamic improvements, improved flight performance and the Cirrus Airframe Parachute System™ (CAPS). Substantial testing, including a new series of CAPS parachute test drops, was conducted for validation. Significant changes for Generation 5 aircraft have been made to the CAPS system including an increased canopy size to 65 ft. diameter, a new rocket extraction system that propels the parachute upon activation, an advanced technology electrical rocket igniter and lighter and stronger construction materials. Other airframe upgrades included strengthening the carbon fiber single part wing spar, strengthening the landing gear and designing a new flap system allowing extension to the first position at 150 knots.
This redesigned 2013 SR22/SR22T, the fifth generation of Cirrus aircraft, adds a load carrying exclamation point to recent Cirrus innovations including: Cirrus Perspective™ avionics by Garmin®; Cirrus Known Ice Protection™; Perspective Global Connect™ satellite communications; 60/40 FlexSeating™; and the totally unique Cirrus Airframe Parachute System™, standard equipment on every Cirrus ever produced.