Chile's (ENAER) has set up a European company, based in the Netherlands, to market, redesign and assemble its Namcu (Eaglet) military two-seat composite light aircraft for the civil market.

EuroENAER is a joint venture between ENAER and Dutch Piper dealer Jan Van Toorn, who will also head the company. Production of the Eaglet, a competitor to the Diamond DA20 Katana, will begin in 1998 from the company's Den-Helder factory in the Netherlands, and will be aimed at the European market. The deal has taken two years to assemble, having been announced in 1995.

The new Eaglet will have several changes. In particular the original Textron Lycoming 85kW(115hp) U235 engine will be replaced with an O-320-D2A, which will be derated to 110kW, and will give the aircraft a maximum speed of 140kt (260km/h). Other significant design changes include a flap modification to reduce stall speed, improved cockpit layout and equipment, new crash-proof seats and attachments, redesigned elevators and fitting of lightening protection and wheel spats. Main airframe and other component structures will be manufactured in Chile at ENAER's El Bosque, Santiago, factory, and shipped to Europe for assembly.

The $120,000 Eaglet is scheduled to receive Dutch certification by the middle of this year, when an initial production batch of up to ten aircraft is anticipated.

Source: Flight International