March 28, 2012
By Alton K. Marsh
Flight Design is working on two new aircraft designs, one for the light sport market, and a four-passenger fully certified model that could fly late this year.
No sooner had Rotax announced a new 912 iS fuel-injected engine than Flight Design offered its CTLSi model featuring the new 100-horsepower engine. The light sport aircraft will realize fuel savings when flying at higher altitudes. It will feature synthetic vision, weather, and terrain information, along with an electronic flight instrument system (EFIS) and a Garmin 3GX or Dynon avionics. Garmin does not as yet plan to develop an EFIS for the new Rotax fuel-injected engine. (The engine is required to have an EFIS system.) Pilots will be able to use touchscreen navigation.
Coming to the fully certified market is the four-place C4 that, while looking a little like a Cessna 172, flies at 155 knots true airspeed. It is promised to have a range of 1,200 nautical miles, a 2,640 pound maximum takeoff weight, and a 1,320-pound useful load. It will cost $250,000.
The C4 will feature left-side double doors and will initially be powered by a 180-hp Continental IO-360 AF engine first announced last year at AOPA Aviation Summit. There are plans to offer a Jet A burning engine in the future. It will include a BRS airframe parachute with electronic ignition.
There are 65 orders for the airplane. A new mockup of the aircraft will be shown at Friedrichshafen, Germany, in a few weeks. Those placing orders early will receive discounts on the aircraft price. The aircraft could fly in late 2012.
AOPA Pilot Senior Editor Alton Marsh has been a pilot since 1970 and has an airline transport pilot certificate and instrument and multiengine flight instructor certificates, aerobatic training, and a commercial seaplane certificate.
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