ABOVE: Lāna’i Air will operate the first passenger configuration of the SkyCourier

Textron Aviation has delivered the first passenger unit of the twin-engine, high-wing, large-utility turboprop, the Cessna 408 SkyCourier.

The SkyCourier made its first flight in May 2022 and received type certification in 2022. Initially designed with the needs of American courier FedEx in mind (who ordered an initial 50 units back in 2017), FedEx took delivery of the first production model in May 2022.

Available in both freighter and passenger versions, with optional ways to reconfigure the aircraft between missions, the SkyCourier builds upon a clean-sheet design that Textron claims “brings modern solutions and unmatched value proposition to the segment”. Lannie O’Bannion, senior vice president, Global Sales and Flight Operations, noted: “it’s highly versatile, with cabin flexibility, payload capability, performance and low operating costs”. The SkyCourier is powered by two Pratt and Whitney PT6A-65SC turboprop engines, equipped with Garmin G100 avionics and possesses a maximum 900 nautical-mile range.

In May 2023, Textron announced the delivery of the first 19 seat passenger variant to Western Aircraft Inc, operating in Hawaii as Lāna’i Air. The service provider offers luxury flights between Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Honolulu and the island of Lāna’i, and the Cessna SkyCourier will now operate alongside the Pilatus PC-12 currently operated by Lāna’i Air.

“We’re thankful for our talented team who brough the Cessna SkyCourier to life, and for customers like Lāna’i Air who see the value in this incredible aircraft,” added O’Bannion.