The prototype SwiftFury made its first flight earlier this month, after LoPresti Speed Merchants founder and president Roy LoPresti secured the rights to the design of the two-seat sports aircraft earlier this year.

The SwiftFury is based on Globe Aircraft's Globe Swift design of the 1940s. In the late 1980s, LoPresti collaborated with former Piper Aircraft owner Stuart Milar to license the rights to the original Globe Swift and to incorporate speed and fuel-efficiency improvements. The new Textron Lycoming-powered SwiftFury is larger than the original Globe Swift and cruises 50% faster at 160kt (300km/h) true airspeed.

LoPresti originally attracted deposits for 569 aircraft, but the SwiftFury became entangled in the Piper bankruptcy action and the licence was not awarded to LoPresti until early February (Flight International, 24 February-2 March). By that time the prototype had spent more than six years on the ground at LoPresti's aerodynamic enhancement company, LoPresti Speed Merchants.

"We're ready to move the project ahead," says LoPresti. Marketing is under way and manufacturing sites are being investigated. The aircraft will have its debut at this month's Sun'n'Fun Fly-In at Lakeland, Florida.

Source: Flight International