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ATR 42

By Wikipedia,
the free encyclopedia,

ATR 42
A FedEx Feeder ATR 42-300
Role Regional Airliner
Manufacturer ATR
First flight 16 August 1984
Introduced 1985
Status In revenue service
Primary users FedEx Feeder
Produced 1984-present
Number built 401+
Variants ATR 72

The ATR 42 is a twin-turboprop, short-haul regional airliner built in France and Italy by ATR. The name "42" comes from the aircraft's standard seating, which varies from 40 to 50. The aircraft was the basis for the ATR 72.

Design and development

A PIA ATR 42-500 series at Hyderabad Airport
A PIA ATR 42-500 series at Hyderabad Airport

A Vanair ATR-42-320 at Port Vila International Airport
A Vanair ATR-42-320 at Port Vila International Airport

Contact Air/Lufthansa Regional ATR 42-500 at Stuttgart Airport
Contact Air/Lufthansa Regional ATR 42-500 at Stuttgart Airport

TAROM ATR 42-500 interior
TAROM ATR 42-500 interior

The ATR 42 was announced in 1981, making its maiden flight on 16 August 1984; French and Italian certification followed in September 1985 and its first revenue flight was in December of the same year with Air Littoral of France.

As of January 2009 at least 401 ATR 42s have been delivered worldwide with up to 18 aircraft on order.


There are five major variants of the ATR 42.

ATR 42-200/300

The -200 & -300 were the original ATR 42 aircraft, powered by Pratt & Whitney Canada PW120 engines rated at 2000 shp.

ATR 42-320

The -320 was an improved version of the -300 powered by PW121 engines (2100 shp).

ATR 42-400

The -400 is the official name for the passenger version of the ATR 42 "Surveyor". the -400 is an upgraded version of the -200/300/320 using six-bladed propellers on otherwise identical PW120/PW121 engines. The primary users of this aircraft type are Conviasa & CSA Czech Airlines.

ATR 42-500

The ATR-500 is the current production version. It is identical in appearance to earlier 42s with the exception of its six-bladed propellers turned by PW127E engines rated at 2,400 shp (1,800 kW) for improved hot and high performance and greatly increased cruise speed. It also has an increased maximum takeoff weight, allowing for more cargo and greater range (up to 1,500 nm).

ATR 42-600

On Tuesday 2 October 2007, ATR CEO Stéphane Mayer, announced the launch of the new -600 series aircraft at a Press Conference held in Washington, D.C..

The new ATR 42-600 and ATR 72-600 will feature the latest technological enhancements while building upon the well-known advantages of the current aircraft, namely its high efficiency, proven dispatch reliability, low fuel burn and operating cost. It will include the new PW127M as standard engine, Glass Cockpit flight deck featuring five wide LCD screens that will replace the current EFIS (Electronic Flight instrument System). In addition, a multi-purpose computer (MPC) will further enhance Flight Safety and operational capabilities. The new avionics, to be supplied by Thales, will also provide CAT III and RNP capabilities. The -600 series ATR aircraft will be progressively introduced during the second half of 2010.


An STC exists to convert all ATR 42 variants to all-cargo transport aircraft. FedEx, Aviavilsa, UPS, and DHL are major operators of the type.

The ATR 42 "Surveyor" is a maritime patrol version of the -500, and VIP transport and in-flight inspection versions of the -500 also exist.


Civil operators

ATR 42-500 at Toliara Airport, Madagascar
ATR 42-500 at Toliara Airport, Madagascar

The largest operators of the ATR-42 are FedEx Express, Airlinair, and Mexico City-based Aeromar respectively.

Some 70 other airlines operate smaller numbers of the type.

Military and government operators

Guardia di Finanza ATR 42MP (MM62166) takes off at the Royal International Air Tattoo, Fairford, Gloucestershire, England
Guardia di Finanza ATR 42MP (MM62166) takes off at the Royal International Air Tattoo, Fairford, Gloucestershire, England
  • Libyan Government (One ATR42 MP on order for 2009 delivery)

Accidents and incidents

  • On 11 October 1999, an Air Botswana captain boarded an ATR 42-320 aircraft and took off. Once in the air, he asked by radio to speak to President Festus Mogae (who was outside the country at the time), Air Botswana's general manager and others. In spite of all attempts to persuade him to land and discuss his grievances, he stated he was going to crash into some planes on the apron. After a flying time of about two hours, he performed two loops and then crashed at 200 knots (230 mph) into Air Botswana's two other ATR 42s parked on the apron. The captain was killed, but there were no other casualties. He had been grounded on medical reasons, refused reinstatement, and regrounded until February 2000.

Specifications (ATR 42-500)

Data from

General characteristics

  • Capacity: 44-50 passengers
  • Length: 74 ft 5 in (22.67 m)
  • Wingspan: 80 ft 7 in (24.57 m)
  • Height: 24 ft 11 in (7.59 m)
  • Wing area: 586 ft (54.5 m)
  • Empty weight: 24,802 lb (11,250 kg)
  • Useful load: 16,203 lb (7,350 kg)
  • Max takeoff weight: 41,005 lb (18,600 kg)
  • Powerplant: 2× Pratt & Whitney Canada PW127E turboprops, 2,160 hp (1,790 kW) each


See also

Related development

Comparable aircraft

Text from Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License; additional terms may apply.

Published in July 2009.

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