Beechcraft PD-290

Does anyone have any pictures of a Beechcraft PD-290? Its a King Air 200 airframe with P&W JT-15D engines. Beech did some flight testing with this configuration back in 1975. It turned out to be slower than the turboprops so they did not pursue the project. I can’t seem to find pictures of it anywhere. Just curious to see what it looked like.

I’d never heard of that. If you find a picture, post it to the Fugly file. :stuck_out_tongue: In researching that, I found this…

Beech 18 tri motor V-tail

:open_mouth: That’s a whole lotta’ “concepts” goin’ on there Son!
Send that Bird to the “Fugly File” ASAP!

Edit- I too am intrigued by the notion of a PD-290, let’s see if we can come up with anything! Curious…

Are you sure that’s the model number? Beech uses 2 letters, a dash, and 3 digits for its aircraft serial numbers so I was thinking this may be the serial number of the aircraft.

The PD stands for Preliminary Design. I read about it in an artical in World Aircraft Sales Magazine. May issue 2004.

When Cessna unveiled its Citation in 1972, it was evident that at least some of Beech’s future markets would have to be in jets, so in 1975, Beech built a testbed for jet aerodynamics and systems. Using the first King Air 200 prototype, engineers replaced the two turboprops in the wing nacelles with two Pratt & Whitney JT-15D-4 turbojets. The rather striking PD (Preliminary Design) 290 accumulated 93 hours on 103 flights between March 1975 and September 1977, apparently gathering enough information to convince the company to resume the search for a ready-built design. In late 1985, Beech announced it had purchased the design, tooling and rights to manufacture and market the Mitsubishi 300 jet.

I still haven’t been able to come up with any pics yet. I used to work for one of the oldest Beech dealers, I’ll have to see if the “Old Man” has anything in his memorabilia trunk.

Found a picture of it in The Complete Encyclopedia of World Aircraft

The picture and a description is available at

Nice job David, my money was on you finding it. Pretty cool looking with the engines on the wings instead of the fuse like most other small jets.

Thanks. The book doesn’t give much details on aircraft but it does have plenty of pictures!

Dude, I love a Kingair as much as the next guy, but that is just wrong, wrong, wrong…

Although, compared to the Beechjet, it may have been better airplane!

Tower: King Air three eight bravo abort take off… uh, you have no engines!

That’s exactly what I love about these forums- instant gratification. Thanks Dami!!!

After staring at that photo for 10 mins my brain still can’t accept it… it’s just WRONG.

Can you imagine standing on the ramp and watching a KA climb out accompanied by that turbojet crackling noise? Now THAT would be bizarre!

And that’s scary isn’t it… :open_mouth:

Nice work there David. :wink:

nice shape for that age… more or less of today’s jet main body look like that… :laughing:

Hmmmm, maybe put that wing on the 1900D…talk about ugly!

Send that thing straight to the fugly file…

No need for that - it doesn’t fit the category.

Just my opinion - and the opinion of all wise men all around the world :slight_smile:

thanks for digging that picture up, damiross. Wow! i think we can file that under: what were they thinking?!

They were thinking…“Oh Shit” as their cross town rival was pulling away in a new market. In an effort of playing catch-up, Beech ended up buying the rights to two existing jet designs. The Mitsubishi Diamond Jet and the Hawker HS-125 from Hawker-Siddley. It took Beech nearly thirty years after the introduction of Cessna’s Citation to achieve certification of their own jet design. And the Premier hasn’t had anywhere near the initial success of the Citation.

I still think it looks like they forgot to put the propellers on the engines. :smiley: