In a Nov. 6 press conference at AOPA Expo, Diamond Aircraft announced that its popular new DA20 trainers have added Aspen Avionics’ glass cockpit installations.
“The DA20 is about 400 pounds heavier than the Light Sport Aircraft category’s maximum gross weight,” said Diamond President Peter Maurer. “We believe that this makes the DA20 a more robust airplane, but at the same time customers were asking about a glass cockpit option. But a full-blown G1000 avionics suite is overkill in this airplane. The extra weight and cost gets away from the original design idea.”
So Diamond announced that it is now offering two Aspen Avionics’ glass cockpit displays. Customers can order Aspen’s EFD1000 Pilot primary flight display, or Aspen’s larger EFD1000 Pro display. The Pilot primary flight display will be a $7,995 option.
“This makes it possible for flight schools to do technologically advanced aircraft (TAA) training in a certified, sub-$200,000 airplane that burns just 5 gph. In fact, this is the lowest-cost certified glass cockpit airplane,” said Maurer.
Certification of the Aspen installation is expected in mid-2009. There will be retrofit packages available for existing DA20s equipped with the standard “six-pack” of round gauges.