April 15, 2011
By Thomas B Haines
Piper Aircraft put its Altaire single-engine jet mockup on tour, with hundreds turning out at dealers to check out the large cabin and advanced cockpit. For now, the cabin is ground-bound in a semi-trailer. However, Piper executives say the first conforming prototype of the airplane will fly next year with certification and deliveries scheduled for 2014.
Skytech, a Piper dealer located at Carroll County Regional Airport in Westminster, Md., hosted the tour starting on April 14 at a private reception for customers and prospects. A public open house was scheduled for April 15. The tour continues northeast with visits to Columbia Aircraft sales at Westchester County Airport in White Plains, N.Y., on April 18. The show moves to Groton-New London Airport in Connecticut on April 20 and to Marshfield Airport in Bedford, Mass., on April 22.
The tour continues in the Midwest and Florida in May. Additional stops are planned throughout the Southeast, Midwest, and Canada later this summer with a plan to hit 16 states before the end of the year.
AOPA Editor in Chief Tom Haines joined AOPA in 1988. He owns and flies a Beechcraft A36 Bonanza. Since soloing at 16 and earning a private pilot certificate at 17, he has flown more than 100 models of general aviation airplanes.
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