The Israeli air force has short-listed replacements for its Piper PA-18-150 Super Cub ab initio trainers. The successful type will also be used for some of the training now conducted on Fouga CM170 Zukit (Magister) upgraded basic jet trainers.

Five types have been shortlisted: the Aermacchi SF260E/F from Italy, Chile's Enaer T-35 Pillan, Germany's Grob 115T, the Pacific Aerospace CT-4E from New Zealand and the Zlin 242L from the Czech Republic. A final decision is expected by mid-2001.

It is planned that an Israeli company will purchase or lease the aircraft and sell flying hours to the air force.

The Cubs are used in the air force's flying school and for flight screening and initial training. The air force is also keen to do more training on an elementary trainer, reducing the amount of flying on the Zukit, which is also due for replacement (Flight International, 8-14August). The air force has been seeking a Zukit replacement for years, but has been repeatedly delayed because of funding problems. Shifting some training to the piston-engine aircraft will extend the CM170's service life.

Source: Flight International