The VFW-Fokker 614 (also VFW 614) was a twin-engined jetliner designed and built in West Germany. It was produced in small numbers by VFW-Fokker in the early- to mid-1970s, and originally intended as a DC-3 replacement. Its most distinctive feature was that its engines were mounted in pods on pylons above, rather than below, the wing.
Only three airlines and the Luftwaffe operated new VFW 614s.
Cimber Air started operations in 1950. It was founded by the late Captain Ingolf Nielsen. It was one of the very few operators of the VFW-Fokker 614 regional jet of which it had two. It also operated the Nord 262 and the Grumman Gulfstream 1 on its scheduled services.
The aircraft was initially prone to engine problems, and suffered the fundamental problem that it was too expensive for the small regional airlines for which it was planned. Three aircraft were flown but never delivered, and four airframes were broken-up before completion.
The program was officially cancelled in 1977, and the last unsold aircraft flew in July 1978. Most aircraft had been disposed of by 1981, with the manufacturer buying the aircraft and simultaneously ending support of the aircraft.[
Thereafter, only the Luftwaffe aircraft remained in service, being disposed of in 1999. The last airworthy VFW 614 was in use with DLR for the Advanced Technologies Testing Aircraft System (ATTAS)-Project. Freundeskreis VFW614 e.V. reported that the certificate of airworthiness for DLR's VFW-614 ATTAS Project was withdrawn on 12 Nov 2004 and is now replaced by an Airbus A320.
Photo source: Alf Blume