Nothing ever really goes away in aviation. Take the AG-5B Tiger, which True Flight Aerospace plans to build in Valdosta, Georgia. This is the four-seater that Tiger Aircraft built in Martinsburg, West Virginia till it went bankrupt in January. It is the same Tiger first produced by Grumman American in 1974.
Grumman American was bought by Gulfstream, which ended production of the Tiger in 1979. The line was restarted in 1990 by American General Aviation, which closed its doors after just three years. Then came Tiger Aircraft, which produced just 51 AG-5Bs between 2001 and 2006. Now True Flight is taking up the reins.
Tiger, Tiger…On what wings dare he aspire?
The Tiger is a sturdy all-metal aircraft, clearly well-loved by its owners. I am torn between applauding True Flight for keeping a classic alive and lamenting money spent preserving old designs that appeal to old farts like me when we should be producing new light aircraft that will attract new pilots.