The Mitsubishi MU-2 is a twin-engine turboprop that was manufactured by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. Designed as Mitsubishi’s first postwar aircraft, it was designed as a light twin turboprop that was suitable for both civilian and military needs. The aircraft, which boasted the latest technologies at the time, was designed for high-speed and is capable of short field takeoffs and landings.
The first Mitsubishi MU-2 flew on September 14, 1963.
Mitsubishi MU-2 Safety Concerns
In the first few decades that the aircraft was in the United States, concerns rose over the safety record of the Mitsubishi MU-2B. Compared to similar twin turboprops, the numbers were staggering and concerning:
- The accident rate was twice as high as other twin turboprops
- The fatality rate was roughly 2.5 times higher than other aircraft
- Fatal accident rates in icing conditions were 4 times higher
- Fatal accident rates involving loss of control, both on initial climb and while in-flight, were 3.5 times higher
- Fatal accidents involving loss of control during emergencies was 7 times higher
Accidents were increasing year-over-year, which led the FAA to conduct three separate and thorough safety evaluations. These elevations not only considered the certification of the aircraft, but it also reviewed the operations, maintenance, and training of the operators.
After thorough analysis, the FAA determined that the safety concerns were not due to the Mitsubishi MU-2 aircraft itself, but the issue was conflicting training. A more standardized training syllabus and operating procedures were required by flight schools and instructors for any pilot before they could safely operate the aircraft.
After the analytics and report was completed in December 2005, the following policies were addressed:
- A need for a greater level of knowledge-based decisions
- Difference in the aircraft design, particularly with the full span wing spoilers and high drag gear doors, could have contributed to many of the accidents
- Enhanced, aircraft-specific training could have reduced the chance of accident-causing errors
After the report, the FAA mandated that all operators of the Mitsubishi MU-2B series, including those who act as pilot, second-in-command, or anyone who may manipulate controls at any time, must complete thorough training and testing before being allowed to fly the MU-2.
Once the more detailed training was in place, accident rates dropped considerably.
MU-2 Performance Specs
Despite its rocky start, the Mitsubishi MU-2 is an exceptional aircraft. It’s dependable, rugged, and capable of take-offs and landings in complex conditions.
It’s compact in size but has a robust airframe. The Mitsubishi MU-2 is fitted with Honeywell TPE-331 engines that have a TBO of over 5,000 hours. Incredibly powerful and quick to accelerate,along with being very fuel efficient.
Engine and Airframe Specs
Length: 39 ft. 5 in.
Height: 13 ft. 8 in.
HP: 715 eshp
Seats: Up to 11
Fixed Pitch/Constant Speed Propeller: Constant Speed
Fuel Capacity: 400 gallons usable, 2,740 lbs
Payload with full fuel: 1,368 lbs
Zero fuel weight: 9,550 lbs.
Weight and Capabilities
Maximum Takeoff Weight: 11,575 lbs
Maximum Landing Weight: 11,025 lbs
Approx. Empty Weight:7,650 lbs
Useful Load: 3,808 lbs
Wind Loading: 65 lb per square feet
Baggage Capacity: 600 lbs
Takeoff Distance Over 50-ft Obstacle: 3,400 ft.
Max Demonstrated Crosswind: 22 kt (takeoff), 18 kt (landing)
Stall Speed Clean: 106 KCAS
Stall Speed Landing Configuration: 81 KCAS
Rate of Climb: 2,300 fpm
Maximum Operating Altitude: 29,000 ft.
Cruise Speed: 290 kts.
Landing Distance Over 50-ft Obstacle: 2,200 ft.
It’s important to note that each individual aircraft is different in terms of range and speed, and environmental factors like wind and weather can impact the numbers listed above.
Refer to individual AIrcraft Flight Manuals for pertinent details.
Count on Winner Aviation to Service Your Mitsubishi MU-2
At Winner Aviation, we’re here to handle your Mitsubishi MU-2 inspections and maintenance. From the Honeywell TPE331 base maintenance and 7500 hour inspections through to propeller balancing and fuel cell repairs, our experienced maintenance team is ready to get you back in the air quickly.
Get a quote for Mitsubishi MU-2 maintenance or inspections, or simply contact us to talk with one of our knowledgeable maintenance technicians.