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Diamond shows off DA42 L360Diamond shows off DA42 L360

Diamond Aircraft’s entire line of airplanes is on display at AOPA Expo, but the biggest news is the appearance of its new Lycoming-powered DA42 TwinStar.

Unlike the Thielert-powered TAE 2.0-liter  turbodiesels in the first production runs of the DA42, the DA42 L360 models will be powered by twin Lycoming IO-360 engines of 180-hp each. This gives the L360 variants of the DA42 some 90 more horsepower than the original TAE-equipped models.

Diamond says that the DA42 L360 will be certified by the first quarter of 2009, at which time deliveries will begin. Price of the DA42 L360 is set at $599,500, which includes a Garmin G1000 cockpit.

Diamond President Peter Maurer said that the DA42 L360 will have a high-speed cruise speed of just over 180 knots, a normal cruise speed of just over 170 knots, and a maximum range of approximately 700 nm, with IFR reserves.

Diamond had been experimenting with a Lycoming-powered prototype of a DA42 some five years ago. With the failure of Thielert Aircraft Engines, Diamond resurrected the Lycoming-powered DA42 project, and now the company is taking the first orders at AOPA Expo.

The fuel injected Lycoming engines will power counter-rotating Hartzell propellers. Other features of the DA42 L360 include a redesigned cowl, a PowerFlow tuned exhaust system, a taller canopy, and optional certification for flight into known icing. Fuel capacity is 79 gallons.

In the future, Diamond will introduce another new DA42 model—one powered by Diamond’s own Austro AE300 engines called the DA42 NG. The company also will make retrofits available to current owners of Thielert-powered DA42s; owners will be able to swap their existing Theilert engines with either the Austro or Lycoming engines.

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