More than 180 PC-21s have been ordered by air forces jn Singapore, Switzerland, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Australia.
A 1,600 shp Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-68B turbine and a 92in (2.337m) Hartzell five-blade graphite/titanium propeller helps give the PC-21 considerably better performance than earlier Pilatus trainers
Pilatus claims the PC-21's flying cost per hour is about 40 times cheaper than that of a modern fighter, helping air forces download training from more expensive lead-in fighter trainers.
Two of the eight PC-21s, operated by the Schweizer Luftwaffe, which streams its F/A-18 pilots transfer onto the Hornet directly from the turboprop.
The PC-21 wing, 13° swept and with winglets, has a laminar airfoil, a span of 9.10m, an area of 14.9m2 and an aspect ratio of 5.1.
Sleek looks, even on the ground, reflect Pilatus' aim with the PC-21 of creating a trainer that combines the advantages of a light turboprop trainer with the handling and performance of a jet trainer.
The PC-21 Integrated Training System features training documents, computer-cased training and synthetic training devices (pictured) that take students up to the first flight and assist them in getting used to managing different modes and capabilities
Both cockpits have three NVG-compatible multifunction displays; the front cockpit has a head-up display (HUD) and the aft cockpit a HUD repeater. The stepped cockpit, with a front canopy that can resist birdstrikes at high cruise speeds, creates good all-round visibility for both student and instructor. The pressurised cockpit is equipped with an anti-g system and two Martin-Baker Mk-CH16C zero/zero ejection seats.
The primary flight display is selected in the middle multifunction display. The moving map, navigation and tactical display or synthetic radar display are on the left. On the right is the engine and fuel data display, which can also display simulated weapons.