Sporty's Founder Hal Shevers was one of the first Cirrus customers to put a deposit on a Vision Jet a decade ago—and now he's auctioning his highly coveted delivery position for charity.
"My delivery position comes up in the fall," Shevers said at a party hosted by Cirrus July 23. "I'm going to give it up, and I want the proceeds to go to charity."
Early depositors typically paid about $100,000 a decade ago for delivery positions. The children's charities will receive auction funds in excess of Shevers' initial deposit.
About 600 Cirrus customers are in line to buy Vision Jets, and so far about seven have been delivered. The company is currently producing one jet per week—so the backlog will take many years at current production rates.
To place a bid or to follow the auction online, visit a special website that has been set up for the occasion.
In other Cirrus news, the company said it has delivered about 150 aircraft at its new facility in Knoxville, Tennessee. It's producing about eight piston-engine SR20s and SR22s a week.
Dale Klapmeier, who co-founded the company with brother Alan, has been selling airplanes at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, for 30 years.
"We came here for the first time 30 years ago with a stack of order forms and the coolest airplane on the field," he said of the sleek VK-30 the brothers designed. "We still have the coolest airplane."
Cirrus has produced about 6,700 FAA-certified airplanes since it went into production in 1999, and it's consistently the world's top seller of single-engine piston aircraft.