The U.S. Navy received the first two operational T-54A multi-engine training system aircraft last week at Naval Air Station Corpus Christi, Texas.

The T-54A will replace the aging T-44C Pegasus aircraft, which will begin sundown within six months. The T-54A features a pressurized aircraft cockpit with side-by-side seating and a jump seat. It will provide advanced instrument and asymmetric engine handling training to student naval aviators selected for multi-engine fleet communities.

Additionally, the aircraft’s technology will capture data that allows for Conditioned-Based Maintenance Plus, a capability that enables the Navy to trend aircraft health over time to facilitate improved maintenance planning and efficiency. The T-54 incorporates the latest avionics and navigational updates, including a state-of-the-art cockpit with technology advances in the flight management system.

“This aircraft brings modernized training to student naval aviators and prepares them for the advanced aircraft they will fly in the fleet,” said PMA-273 Program Manager Capt. Duane Whitmer. “Our team is committed to delivering integrated air warfare capabilities to enable the fleet to compete, deter and win—tonight, tomorrow and in the future.”

The Navy may procure up to 64 T-54 aircraft per the contract it awarded to Textron in 2023. Aircraft deliveries are scheduled through calendar year 2026. The T-54 will meet advanced multi-engine and advanced tilt-rotor training requirements for the Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard and select U.S. allies through 2055.

PMA-273 at Naval Air Systems Patuxent River, Maryland, manages the T-54 and T-44 programs. PMA-273 develops and oversees diverse and carrier-capable naval flight training systems where student pilots and undergraduate military flight officers acquire mission-critical aviation skills necessary to carry out current and future missions of the U.S Navy.


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