On opening day of Aero, the giant general aviation show in Germany, Pipistrel presented to the world for the first time its latest design, the Panthera.
Launched as a project at last year’s Aero, the Panthera is a new four-seat composite cruiser, developed entirely in house. The streamlined design takes four people 1,000 nm and cruises at 200 kts while burning only 10 US gallons per hour of fuel. The prototype is powered by a Lycoming IO-390 fuel injected engine, but hybrid- and electro powerplants are coming soon, company officials promised.
Pipistrel CEO Ivo Boscarol (pictured below) calls the design “wildly innovative.”
“Panthera will shake the world of general aviation, setting the benchmark for efficiency, cabin comfort and safety for others to follow,” he predicted. “Hybrid and electric aircraft are the future of aviation, with Panthera being the best airframe to demonstrate the potential of this technology.”
Panthera’s standard equipment includes a specially-developed low-altitude high-speed Ballistic Parachute Rescue System, 26 G safety cockpit, tuned exhaust system, titanium trailing-link retractable landing gear and Garmin avionics. Global Part-23 certification is expected in 2015.
Pipistrel is a three-time winner of the NASA Centennial Challenges and has claimed the highest prize ever awarded in aviation, the Green Flight Challenge 2011. Its four-seat electric Taurus G4 airframe was recently nominated for the prestigious Collier Trophy, awarded to greatest achievements in astronautics and aeronautics.
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