The Brazilian company Embraer has signed a contract with Guatemala for the delivery of 6 EMB-314 / A-29 Super Tucano light attack aircraft. Guatemala thus becomes the 12th country to order the Super Tucano and the 6th in Latin America.
The aircraft will be used in the fight against drug traffickers. The single engined, turboprop Super Tucano is already used in a similar role in Colombia. The 3 other countries in Latin America to use the Super Tucano are Chile, Ecuador and the Dominican Republic.
The multi-role Super Tucano aircraft can perform a number of roles, including attack, close air support, counter insurgency, reconnaissance and surveillance. It can also be used to train pilots.
Senegal has also ordered 3 Super Tucano aircraft. It is the 4th country in Africa to buy the plane after Mauritania, Burkina Faso and Angola. Brazil has provided financing to Guatemala and Senegal to secure both deals.
Earlier, the Super Tucano has again been selected by the United States Air Force to supply 20 Super Tucano aircraft for operations in Afghanistan. An initial order had been cancelled. This, despite repeated opposition from Beechcraft to the $428 million order.
Embraer other aircraft, the KC-390 medium transport aircraft is proceeding as planned. The KC-390 aircraft design has now been finalized and the aircraft may fly for the first time in 2014.
Interestingly, the KC-390 will use 2 turbofan engines. Other aircraft in its class, such as the American C-130J and the Chinese Y-9 with which it will compete against, have opted to use 4 turboprop engines.
Embraer is now already looking to export its KC-390 aircraft. The aircraft is aggressively being marketed to many countries around the world and Embraer claims that the aircraft will be priced much lower than the competition.