Newsletter 35 – October 2006

Welcome to Newsletter 35 – the latest edition of the Pipistrel aircraft newsletter for October 2006, my apologies at the delay since the last newsletter but things have been really busy and there is a lot to talk about in the latest issue.

I have recently returned from a trip to the Pipistrel factory as well as a quick visit to the USA. The trip was very productive and we have a number of exciting offers for our customers.

  • Special offer on Pipistrel Sinus and Virus Aircraft
  • Update on the Pipistrel Taurus
  • New short wingspan Virus model released
  • Latest update on LSA certification in the USA
  • Dealer for New Zealand appointed
  • Second hand aircraft – Australia

Special offer on Pipistrel Sinus and Virus aircraft

Firstly, we have a “super special” for each Pipistrel Sinus and Virus aircraft deposited before the end of November….

We will provide at no additional charge the following items….

  • Long range fuel tanks
  • Large luggage rack
  • Additional vents on the door and roof
  • Aircraft tie down kit
  • Large instrument panel
  • Blue plexiglass on windscreen and roof
  • In air adjustable pedals
  • Nose wheel on Sinus version

This alone represents a saving of around €4,800 or around $6,020 US$ for our United States customers or nearly A$8,000 for our Australian customers.

Additionally, the factory is currently able to offer an 8 week delivery, plus 4 weeks in transit meaning you can take delivery of your new aircraft in just three months.

This is a special offer available to USA, Australian and New Zealand customers ONLY and is time limited to the end of November 2006.

Update on the Pipistrel Taurus

Whilst at the factory I had the opportunity to check out the ongoing production of the Taurus aircraft. At this time there have been nine aircraft delivered to customers scattered around Europe with approximately 2 per month leaving the Pipistrel factory. The expectation however is four aircraft per month leaving the factory from January 2007 as the Pipistrel staff become more familiar with the different processes required in producing the Taurus. The aircraft has been a considerable success since its release and sales in both the USA and Australian markets are very encouraging, ensuring the aircraft has a bright future.

Interestingly, the factory is also looking at releasing a version which is glider only; with Franci Popit, Head of Research & Development and Ivo Boscarol, Pipistrel’s GM at the controls, the Pure Glider version of Taurus (Taurus PureGlider) flew for the first time with some help from the towing pilots of Aeroclub Ajdovscina. The test flight was uneventful and both test-pilots report that Taurus PG performs as expected and makes the flying in tow-leg very simple, thus also suitable for initial glider training.

Completed Aircraft lined up and ready for shipping

Franci Popit, Head of R&D at Pipistrel said “The Taurus PureGlider handles like a dream. It’s really easy to fly with well balanced controls and flaps on take-off really make a difference compared to other gliders, even the single seaters! Absolutely no problem with towing!”

Ivo Boscarol, GM of Pipistrel said “We proved that side-by-side seating arrangement makes no difference when it comes to flying in the tow-leg. It’s as simple as it can be and will make a huge difference with training flights where instructors can communicate with student pilots a lot closer. Forward visibility is excellent…”

Stojan Stokelj, Manager of LJAJ airport and tow pilot said “I was skeptical about the side-by-side seating and tow flights but it proved entirely non-problematic. Taurus PureGlider follows the tow machine in a humble way and takes-off even before a loaded single seater glider would. I’m impressed!”

New short wingspan Virus model released – The Virus SW

We have finally persuaded the factory to produce a special aircraft for the US and Australian market with a smaller wingspan comparable to a Cessna 172/182.

This new aircraft designated Virus SW (standing for Short Wing) is basically a standard Virus aircraft with a 10.6 m wingspan enabling it to fit into the majority of T hangers housing conventional aircraft.

The Virus SW will be fitted as standard with a three blade fixed pitch propeller and will offer a 20:1 glide ratio should the customer choose to go slope soaring.

Fitted with a three blade fixed pitch propeller the Virus SW will provide exceptional climb performance, fantastic economy and economical cruising. If you have ever been worried about the longer wingspan of the Pipistrel aircraft then this model may be perfect for you. The price is also expected to be slightly cheaper than the standard Virus.

Found at the back of the Pipistrel factory is a replica of the first plane to fly in Slovenia
This aircraft was recently flown by Ivo Boscarrol in a national Slovenian airshow

Latest update on LSA certification in the USA

Several days were spent in the USA with our light sport aircraft consultant going through the necessary paperwork and requirements to have Pipistrel Aircraft accepted into the USA market as a light sport aircraft, LSA.

Basically, the aircraft more than qualifies for the category with its existing certification but unfortunately Slovenia; the country of manufacture does not have a direct bilateral agreement with the FAA which is required for LSA certification. We are working on this process continually to have a bilateral agreement introduced and also to have major portions of the aircraft imported into the USA, assembled and then certified locally. We are well down the track with both approvals and expect some exciting news within the next month.

Dealer for New Zealand appointed

It is with a great deal of excitement that I can confirm a dealer has been appointed for the New Zealand market. Details of the new dealer will be published on both the Australian and Slovenian websites in the coming week. The dealers aircraft will be arriving into New Zealand in the first week of November as I am personally flying it across 1600 miles of ocean to deliver the aircraft from Australia. Once the aircraft is in place and the dealer has been completely trained in all the operations of the Sinus aircraft I am sure he will be swamped with requests for test flights because New Zealand is a large gliding market with many enthusiastic pilots.

Second hand aircraft – Australia

One of our favorite owners, Mr. Charles Dalglish who actually owns two Pipistrel Sinus aircraft is finally moving one to get some more hanger room back. The aircraft has less than 200 hours and is 912 tail wheel version aircraft. It presents as new being meticulously looked after over its short life. The plane is available immediately and even though it is currently based in Australia it can be shipped anywhere in the world for a reasonable amount. To find out more information about this aircraft please send me a quick email and I will put you in contact.

Well, that’s all for now I hope you have enjoyed this newsletter and looked forward to bringing you some exciting information regarding LSA approval in the US market shortly.

Take care…. Michael Coates