Textron Aviation will commemorate the seventy-fifth anniversary of the Beechcraft Bonanza with a special-edition model that combines high-tech avionics with a touch of style that was the trademark of longtime company leader Olive Ann Beech.
Orders for the limited-edition Beechcraft Bonanza G36 will be taken for delivery in 2022, the seventy-fifth year since the Bonanza entered the market “for the longest continuously produced aircraft in history,” Textron Aviation said in an April 13 news release.
The special-edition Bonanza is powered by a 300-horsepower Continental IO-550-B engine driving a three-blade, constant-speed propeller. The aircraft has a maximum cruise speed of 176 knots, boasts a maximum range of more than 920 nautical miles, can loft a 1,060-pound maximum payload, and has a service ceiling of 18,500 feet msl. Recent upgrades include Garmin’s G1000 NXi next-generation integrated flight deck.
The retro scheme honors Olive Ann Beech, who took over as president of Beechcraft on the death of her husband, Walter Beech, in 1950, becoming the first woman to lead a major aircraft company, “and by the time she retired in 1982, she’d played key roles in growing the company from 10 to 10,000 employees and made an impact on the aviation industry in numerous ways,” the announcement said.
“The 75th anniversary special edition Beechcraft Bonanza G36 is inspired by ‘Mrs. Beech Blue,’ a custom color Olive Ann adopted on the advice of fashion designer Oleg Cassini,” the announcement said. “The color became her brand and could be found on everything from her dress suits and office furnishings to her automobile’s paint and personal aircraft interiors.”
The color is incorporated in the aircraft’s exterior paint scheme and the interior window panels, carpet, and accents. Other details include the registered “Bubble B” logo on the carpet entry, and Olive Ann Beech’s signature appearing on a metal piece above the cabin table and as an exterior graphic under the pilot’s window.
“The formula for the Beechcraft Bonanza’s longevity involves an ageless style and utility, a passionate legion of owners and aspiring owners, and a seven-decade commitment by company engineers to continuously refine and update features to meet customer, technology, regulatory and environmental needs,” said Lannie O’Bannion, Textron Aviation senior vice president of global sales and flight operations.
“We know Walter and Olive Ann Beech would be proud of where we’ve taken their stylish and powerful piston with today’s Bonanza G36,” O’Bannion said.