Flight Design unveiled an upgraded model of its CTLS Light Sport Aircraft at the U.S. Aviation Expo in Sebring, Florida, late last month. The deluxe CTLS comes with with a loaded instrument panel, a longer engine life, and an upgraded interior treatment, according to company officials.
“Visitors to our exhibit space at Sebring 2010 were very enthusiastic,” reported National Sales Manager John Gilmore. “Our CTLS was outfitted with gorgeous new avionics from Dynon and Garmin and boasted a warmer, color-coordinated interior from Flight Design.”
In addition to the brown leather seats with complementary interior panels and carpet, the 2010 CTLS boasts an instrument panel with two 10-inch Dynon display screens featuring synthetic vision capability, which flank a Garmin 696 GPS. Garmin radios are stacked in the center and an autopilot completes the panel, on which not one round analog gauge was seen, company officials note.
“I was skeptical about SkyView until Dynon made a presentation at our distributor-dealer meeting Monday after the Sebring Expo. Later I flew the SkyView-equipped CTLS and I was really impressed,” said Tom Peghiny, president of Flight Design USA. “I thought it kind of looked like a video game on the ground, but in the air the situational awareness is remarkable.”
SkyView is optional; the base CTLS comes with dual 7-inch Dynon screens and Garmin 496 GPS.
The CTLS on display at Sebring also had a decal boasting the new 2,000-hour Time Between Overhaul (TBO) life of the 100-hp Rotax engine. Flight Design officials note that previously, Continental or Lycoming engines had an edge over Rotax in TBO period. “The playing field is now level,” declared Gilmore.
Flight Design is a 23-year-old air-sport products producer based in Germany. The company remains the worldwide market leader thanks to its CT series of light aircraft. More than 1,500 of these aircraft are flying in 39 countries. One of the first aircraft certified under ASTM International standards in 2005, the CT (“composite technology”) remains the top-selling LSA in America through five consecutive years.