Toulouse - The year 2017 ended with a very good bottom line for ATR, and this year already started with positive signs of progress for the European manufacturer.

The Franco-Italian turboprop manufacturer has managed to return to the competitive US market. Silver Airways will add a total of 20 ATR -600s to its fleet.

The deal is closed by leasing company Nordic Aviation Capital (NAC), which has ordered 16 ATR 42-600s and four ATR 72-600s.

The first ATR -600 of the Silver Airways will enter into service from March 2018. The aircraft is configured with 46 passengers in a single class. By 2020, the airline is said to have integrated all ATR -600s into its fleet.

The brand new ATRs will replace the aging Saab 340B turboprops of the Silver Airlines. With the arrival of new aircraft, the airline wants to increase the frequency of its scheduled flights on its main routes and add new destinations in Florida and the Caribbean to its network.

The only ATR operator in the US so far is the cargo operator FedEx.