The New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) and the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) have inducted the new Beechcraft T-6C military trainer aircraft for pilot training programmes.
The NZDF will train new generation pilots in 11 T-6C Texan II aircraft delivered by Beechcraft Defence, a subsidiary of Textron Aviation.
Beechcraft Defense Company president Tom Hammoor said: "We applaud the New Zealand Defence Force and Royal New Zealand Air Force for standing up this impressive programme with the support of industry-leading partners
"New Zealand joins a family of the world's finest air forces training in the T-6C platform, which combines intuitive handling characteristics and superior engine systems to provide critical training capability for student pilots.
"The expertise and commitment of the maintenance team on the ground in New Zealand ensures the RNZAF T-6 fleet will continue to deliver the operational rates required to fulfil the training demands for decades to come."
The trainer will feature CAE's T-6C Ground-Based Training System (GBTS), which incorporates classroom training and simulator training using two high-fidelity T-6C operational flight trainers.
Additionally, Beechcraft will provide maintenance and logistics support for the fleet of T-6C aircraft throughout the training programme.
An advanced version of the original T-6A, the T-6C military trainer features an upgraded cockpit that includes a head-up display (HUD), up-front control panel (UFCP), three-colour multi-function displays (MFD) and a hands-on throttle and stick (HOTAS).
More than 20 countries around the world use T-6 aircraft to train pilots, navigators, and weapons systems operators.
Currently, the UK Royal Military Flight Training System (UKMFTS) Training programme employs T-6C military trainer aircraft.
Image: T-6C military trainer aircraft. Photo: courtesy of Textron.