Pilatus Flugzeugwerke

The company was established in 1939, but it was not until 1944 that a Pilatus-built aircraft, the SB-2 Pelican, first took to the air. Soon after, in 1945, Pilatus started producing the P-2 trainer for the Swiss Air Force, of which 54 were built.

This was followed by the P-3 military trainer, built for the Swiss Air Force (72 aircraft) and the Brazilian Navy (6 aircraft), in 1953.

In 1959, the legendary civilian PC-6 Porter was introduced. This popular utility aircraft and its successor, the Turbo Porter, are still being built today.

Pilatus introduced the PC-11 (also known as the B-4) all-metal glider in 1972, of which a total of 322 were eventually built.

1978 saw the first flight of the tandem-seat PC-7 Turbo Trainer, although an earlier (converted) version first flew in 1966. To date, more than 450 PC-7s have been built.

In 1979, Pilatus acquired Britten-Norman, constructor of the Britten-Norman Islander and Britten-Norman Defender aircraft.

Pilatus built the first PC-9 Advanced Turbo Trainer in 1984; more than 250 aircraft of this type have been built to date.

The first of more than 70 PC-7 MkII Turbo Trainers was built in 1994. The same year saw the introduction of Pilatus' most successful plane, the turboprop-powered PC-12 multi-purpose aircraft. To date, more than 300 have been built.

The first PC-12 Eagle surveillance aircraft was built in 1995. It is marketed in the western hemisphere by Pilatus Business Aircraft - a wholly owned subsidiary of Pilatus Aircraft headquartered in Broomfield, Colorado - which was established in the United States in 1996.

TSA Transairco SA of Geneva was procured by Pilatus in 1997. In 1998 Pilatus Australia Pty Ltd was established, while Britten-Norman was sold.

In December 2000, the owners Unaxis (previously called Oerlikon-Bührle) sold Pilatus to a consortium of Swiss investors.

The latest-generation PC-21 advanced trainer was rolled out in 2002.