April 19, 2012
By Thomas A. Horne
Italian manufacturer Tecnam revealed a new taildragger and amphibious seaplane to attendees at the Aero show, along with hopes that they’ll meet with success in the American market. The basic Tecnam P92 has been around for 20 years, but for 2012 the company is tweaking the design to make it more appealing among airplanes certified under U.S. light sport aircraft (LSA) rules.
The P92 Tail Dragger is being offered in two versions—one with a 98-hp Rotax 912 ULD engine, the other with a 115-hp Lycoming YO-233 engine. Tecnam said the 118-knot airplane can be fitted out to serve as a towplane for gliders, and there’s also an optional belly-mounted cargo pod with two access panels. The price of the basic airplane is set at $106,820.
The $135,820 P92 Sea-Sky brings a set of amphibious floats to the design. With its Rotax 912 ULS2 engine the airplane can make water takeoffs in less than 656 feet, Tecnam says, climb at 790 fpm, cruise as fast as 92 knots, and make water landings in less than 260 feet.
AOPA Pilot Editor at Large Tom Horne has worked at AOPA since the early 1980s. He began flying in 1975 and has an airline transport pilot and flight instructor certificates. He’s flown everything from ultralights to Gulfstreams and ferried numerous piston airplanes across the Atlantic.
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