April 14, 2015
Flight Design brought its C4 prototype to Aero Friedrichshafen this week, just a few days after the airplane’s first flight. The flight, which took place in Germany last Thursday, lasted for about an hour. “We were able to finish all of our test points,” flight engineer Robert Adam told AVweb. “We checked controls and stability. We will continue testing next week and open up the flight envelope.” The four-seat aircraft has been in the works since 2008, and has drawn a lot of interest because it may be the first aircraft to be certified under new FAA rules that aim to let manufacturers provide safer airplanes at less cost.
Last year it was announced that the avionics will be the Garmin 3X Vision Touch suite, a non-certified system. “The use of non-TSO’d avionics raises the certification burden for the airframe manufacturer, but in the end saves a significant amount of cost while offering much more up-to-date technology,” Tom Peghiny, president of Flight Design USA, said at the time. The company has said that if the new rules aren’t ready by the mandated deadline of the end of this year, they can proceed with certification under EASA and then U.S. certification will follow. The prototype on display at Aero has its windows blacked out, to hide the work-in-progress state of the interior.
Flight Design will hold a news conference on Thursday at Aero with a full update on the program. In the meantime, here’s a video look from Aero.