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Cirrus Provides Update on Vision Jet


December 4, 2008 — Cirrus Design CEO Alan Klapmeier and Mike Van Staagen, vice president of the companyís Advanced Development Group, provided an update on the Cirrus Vision single engine jet program on Wednesday. The pair also provided specs and performance numbers that had been left blank since the Visionís debut before the general public at EAA AirVenture 2008.

Klapmeier announced the verification prototype has accumulated some 120 hours of flight testing and validated the aircraftís stability and control, center of gravity, and speed and altitude ranges. The Duluth, Minnesota-based company also unveiled payload vs. range figures for various speeds, fuel consumption numbers, and weight and payload specs. Max takeoff weight target is 6,000 pounds and useful load 2,300 pounds. Full fuel payload is 400 pounds.

The test aircraft is equipped with an L-3 Communications SmartDeck, but Klapmeier said the company is also considering Garmin and Avidyne as the Visionís avionics supplier. Among the airframe tweaks thus far: The sweep of the V-tail has been decreased and the right cabin door eliminated. Wingspan of 38.5 feet ensures the jet will fit in a standard 40-foot wide hangar. Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) studies are optimizing the thrust vectoring on the backpack-mounted Williams FJ33-4A-19 turbine to minimize pitch changes accompanying throttle adjustments.

Addressing the impact of the current economic downturn, Klapmeier said the company will pull back from an aggressive development pace, but still expects certification and deliveries to begin in 2011, or possibly 2012. Price remains between $1- $1.3 million. More updated information on the program is available at Cirrus' Vision website.

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