Diamond Aircraft

Austria

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Company Profile

Diamond Aircraft Industries is currently the third-largest manufacturer of general aviation aircrafts. They are a Chinese-owned company and create motor gliders and general aircraft. Based in Austria, they also have manufacturing facilities throughout the world.

Originally founded in 1981, Diamond Aircraft has been an industry leader from the beginning. They currently have more than 5,000 aircraft currently in operation throughout the world. They employ more than 1,100 employees and are committed to producing a wide range of aircraft that are safe and innovative.

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Aircraft by Diamond Aircraft

Aerobatic

Diamond DA20

Price: $0.19 Million USD

Private Single Engine

Diamond DA-50 Superstar

Price: $0.65 Million USD

Diamond DA-50 Magnum

Price: $0.7 Million USD

Diamond DA-40 XLS

Price: $0.34 Million USD

Diamond DA-40 CS

Price: $0.26 Million USD

Twin Turboprops

Diamond DA-42 Twin Star

Price: $0.47 Million USD

VLJ (Very Light Jets)

Diamond D-Jet

Price: $1.39 Million USD

Diamond Aircraft History

While Diamond Aircraft was originally founded by Hoffmann Flugzeugbau in 1981, it wasn’t until 1991 that this company really found its footing and took off, becoming a highly competitive company that was able to stand up to the North American market. It was then, after being purchased by the Dries family, that Diamond opened a second facility in Canada.

In 1993, when the DV20 Katana got its certification and was cleared for entry, Diamond became recognized as being a top contender for the spot as the top producer of light aircraft. The DA20 was an improved model of the DV20 and developed for use in North America. Released in 2015, it received accolades in the same year.

Diamond Aircraft Industries, OE-VAM, Diamond DA62
Anna Zvereva from Tallinn, Estonia [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons
A renaming in 1998 to better align with North American operation coincided with the purchase of Wiener Neustadt East Airport. During this time of expansion, Diamond continued to improve and grow their product line. They worked hard to create aircraft that stood out thanks to performance and quality.

In the 2000s, Diamond launched their Diamond D-Jet. This was a single engine aircraft with five seats, and it was geared to filling a gap in the very light jet market. While Diamond had been known for producing high-quality aircraft for a while, this was a major diversification for their company.

Unfortunately, after opening a 100,000 square foot facility in Austria in 2004, the company announced in 2008 that they would have to layoff some employees. This is because general aircraft were not as popular as they had been in the past, thanks in part to the Great Recession. It took years for Diamond and other similar companies to recover from this hit.

Modern Era

Even though Diamond Aircraft had been known as an industry leader for a long time, in 2011, Peter Maurer, the CEO and president of the Canada division pushed the D-Jet to production, hoping to save the company. However, by the end of 2011, the company had laid off 213 employees in London.

In December of 2016, Diamond sold a huge share to Wanfeng Aviation. This Chinese company was considered to be a strategic way to reinvest in the company and was designed to allow for the D-Jet program to be revisited. In 2017 the Diamond DART 280 helicopter concept was announced, with certification planned for 2019.

Diamond is currently in the process of developing a prototype of a hybrid electric quad-tiltrotor. In 2018 they celebrated the first flight of a hybrid-electric aircraft. Additionally, in late 2018 they celebrated the first flight of a hybrid-electric aircraft that was jointly developed. source

This company is known for being highly innovative and exploring ideas beyond what other companies will consider, making them a passionate and driven company.

Diamond aircraft statue
Ben P L [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Notable Events

In 2017, Diamond was awarded the German Design Award for the DA62. This prestigious award recognizes the strengths of this twin-piston aircraft as well as its improved features and innovations. Additionally, this touring plane is roomy and designed with comfort in mind.

2016 was a good year for Diamond, as they earned both the Fliegermagazin Award for the Best New Aircraft for the DA62 as well as the Aerokurier Innovation Award for the Best Powerplant.

Crashes

Unfortunately, there have been a number of Diamond crashes. One of the most recent was in May 2019. While the aircraft only received minor damage and there weren’t any fatalities reported, no crash is good. The Diamond DA40 in operation landed at the Fukushima Airport and burst a tire when they landed. (https://aviation-safety.net/wikibase/224899)

It hasn’t been since a crash in September, 2017, that Diamond had a fatality in a crash. However, two occupants in a Diamond DA0 both died during a training flight in Queensland. The aircraft entered into a spin and the student and instructor were both unable to correct the spin. The subsequent crash destroyed the aircraft and killed both people on board the flight. (https://aviation-safety.net/wikibase/199954)

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