OSHKOSH: Flight Design reveals C4 data, but supplier decisions still wait

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German light aircraft manufacturer Flight Design has revealed performance data for the C4 four-seat piston single, but pushed back selection of several key suppliers, including engines and avionics.

Negotiations are ongoing with engine suppliers Lycoming and Continental, John Doman, the Wichita, Kansas-based director of business development for Flight Design, said.

Talks are also continuing with undisclosed glass cockpit suppliers.

However, Flight Design has settled on performance criteria within six months of the public launch of the C4 design. In the same period, the company has collected $7,000 deposits on 65 aircraft for delivery starting in 2013, Doman said.

Matthias Betsch, chief executive of Flight Design, outlined performance specifications he described as beating the Cessna 182 in some areas for a price point below that of a Cessna 172. The listed price for the C4 is $250,000.

The C4 will be delivered with a 600kg (1,320lb) empty weight and is capable of carrying an equal amount of payload.

With an "average cabin loading", including 179kg of Avgas, the endurance of the C4 is listed as 6.25h when the engine operates at 75% of full power.

The aircraft also boasts a maximum cruise speed of 160kt, a never-exceed speed of 195kt, and a stall speed of 50kt.

"It's going to shift the paradigm for value and performance at this price point," Doman said.

The company has invested in tooling and production systems to build 250 aircraft a year, Betsch said. He added that there is space in Flight Design's factory to build 400 to 500 aircraft a year.

The C4 is the company's boldest product launch yet. After spending several years building ultralights and powered parachutes, Flight Design jumped into the light sport aircraft market in the late 1990s with the two-seat CT series.

German light aircraft manufacturer Flight Design has revealed performance data for the C4 four-seat piston single, but pushed back selection of several key suppliers, including engines and avionics.