The all-composite and carbon fiber constructed Extra NG unlimited aerobatic aircraft that designer Walter Extra unveiled in 2019 has received FAA certification. Orders are already “fast accumulating” for the nimble and robust $450,000 performance specialist, the company said February 2.
The NG stands for Next Generation. The aircraft is a radical departure from the tube-steel construction of its Extra Aircraft predecessors that have been favored by legions of aerobatic champions. Though the NG lacks the metal skeleton under its smooth skin, engineer and company founder Extra said it’s just as strong because of “residual strength” embedded into the carbon fiber components.
Thick, symmetrical wings without dihedral mean there’s no coupling between any of the controls, “so stepping on a rudder pedal in level flight doesn’t raise a wing,” Hirschman noted during an August 2020 flight review. He said that elevator trim “doesn’t change from stall speed to VNE,” and a “combination of counterweights, horns, and aileron spades keeps control forces the same, even as the airplane’s speed changes.” He noted a speedy “12 seconds and 1,500 feet of altitude gain” during a 4-G pull to vertical for a hammerhead maneuver.
The Extra NG is powered by a 315-horsepower Lycoming AEIO-580 engine and an MT Propeller MTV-9 three-blade constant-speed prop. The power combination allows a full aileron deflection speed of 187 knots indicated airspeed, a maximum snap roll speed of 140 KIAS, a Vne of 220 KIAS, and a stall speed of 63 KIAS. Maximum takeoff weight is 2,095 pounds with a useful load of 695 pounds; empty weight is 1,400 pounds. Usable fuel is 51 gallons.
Twenty aircraft have been built to date and Southeast Aero Sales Inc. is the North American distributor. “It’s freaky how fast this thing goes fast,” sales representative and accomplished aerobatic pilot Doug Vayda told Hirschman. “Its rate of acceleration going downhill is mind bending.”