September 26, 2022
Silver Airways Retires Saab 340 Fleet
Airlines Manufacturers

Silver Airways Retires Saab 340 Fleet

DALLAS – Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL), Silver Airways (3M), has retired its last Saab 340B ‘Plus’ from service.

In a Tweet, the airline said it wanted to thank the “dedicated Team members of Silver and Seaborne that operated these airplanes and our passengers for the past 10 years.”

The airline introduced the Saab 340 in early 2012, and it quickly became the backbone of the carrier’s fleet. More aircraft of the type were added when, on January 10, 2018, Silver Airways purchased Puerto Rico-based Seaborne Airlines, inheriting its Saab 340 fleet. At its peak, 3M operated 23 of the type.

Upgrades


Silver operated the turboprops in an all-economy 34-seat cabin with a 2 x 1 layout. The ‘B Plus’ variant was introduced by the Swedish manufacturer in 1994, incorporating changes developed for the larger Saab 2000. Powered by two General Electric CT7-9B turboprops, improvements included an updated cabin interior and the installation of an active noise reduction system.

Before retirement, 3M continued operations with the Saab 340 from its San Juan (SJU) base, flying to the Virgin Islands, Dominican Republic, and additional destinations across the Eastern Caribbean.

3M ATR 42-600 (N403SV). Photo: Otto Kirchof/Airways

Replacement


On April 22, 2019, 3M became the first US operator of the 46-seat ATR 42-600, putting the type into service between FLL and Key West International Airport (EYW). The airline began looking for a replacement for its Saab fleet in December 2015. It finally settled on the European ATR, announcing an order for the type in August 2017. It added the larger 70-seat ATR 72-600 in November 2019.

With a range of 801nm (1483km) with a full payload vs 445nm (823km) and 470nm (870km) with a full payload on the Saab, the introduction of the ATR allowed 3M to expand its network.


Featured Image: At its peak, 3M operated 23 Saab 340s. Photo: Silver Airways

editor
Writer, aviation fanatic, plant geek and part-time Flight Attendant for a UK based airline. Based in Liverpool, United Kingdom.

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