ICON chooses FADEC-equipped Rotax for A5

Washington DC
This story is sourced from Flight International
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ICON Aircraft says it will equip its new A5 light sport amphibian with an electronically controlled, fuel-injected Rotax 912iS engine as standard kit in lieu of the previously planned legacy Rotax 912 four-cylinder, four-stroke carburetted engine.

The 912iS includes a Rockwell Collins-built engine-control unit (ECU) that is the functional equivalent of a full-authority digital engine controller (FADEC) for the fuel-injected 100hp (74kW) engine. Rotax says 912iS can cut fuel burn by 21% at cruise power compared with the legacy 912 engine, while running on aviation fuel or automotive gas and maintaining the same 2,000h time before overhaul.

The new Rotax also includes an engine monitoring unit (EMU) that records data and provides telemetry to the cockpit. In April, the engine maker had said that the 912iS will cost 10-18% more than the carburetted 912 engine, depending on the aircraft model and installation. With the exception of consumer price index increases to its base cost, however, ICON has not changed its "estimated" sales price of $139,000 for the aircraft since 2009.

ICON says it is scheduled to start production on the A5 at the end of 2012, about two years later than its originally planned completion date. The company says it has 750 orders for the aircraft, based on $5,000 deposits.