ICON Aircraft recently delivered the first Model Year 2018 A5 to former Major League Baseball pitcher Roy Halladay.
Halladay, who pitched for the Toronto Blue Jays and Philadelphia Phillies, had always wanted to be a pilot, but wasn’t allowed to when he was playing baseball. Once he retired, one of the first things he did was get his private pilot certificate.
According to ICON officials, Hallady has been a regular A5 renter and longtime deposit holder.
In addition to having all the latest upgrades, Halladay’s A5 is the first of 100 specially equipped Founders Edition (A5 FE) aircraft to be built. It is also the first A5 with airframe structures manufactured entirely at ICON’s new in-house composites manufacturing facility in Vacaville, California.
The 2018 A5 incorporates several improvements, which were developed using the lessons learned from building 21 production aircraft and accumulating more than 6,000 hours on the fleet through flight training, rentals, demonstration flights, and test flights in a wide range of environments, according to company officials.
- Improved nose gear, which makes it easier to taxi and steer the aircraft;
- Instruments with better legibility, illumination, and reliability;
- Reduced complexity and weight of oil cooler while also improving airflow;
- Stiffer rudder pedals with better grip and improved adjustment and locking mechanism;
- Landing gear actuators with better performance at low temperatures;
- Improved canopy design with no airspeed limit for windows-out operation;
- Improved access panels in wings and fuselage for easier serviceability.
The first 100 2018 aircraft are distinguished by a Founders Edition livery, which includes a unique paint scheme, numbered badging and graphics, and a personalized plaque.
“It’s great to add Roy to the team and present him with the first A5 Founders Edition aircraft,” said ICON CEO and Founder Kirk Hawkins. “Roy gets it. He epitomizes the spirit of ICON. While he’s an experienced pilot and flies his own turbine aircraft for A-to-B transportation, his true passion is for the adventure of sport flying, which is why he fell in love with the A5. I was even more excited to see his wife Brandy’s excitement for the A5. The pure joy on her and Roy’s faces talking about flying the A5 together is exactly why we started ICON.”
“This aircraft marks the start of a new production phase of the A5 as we resume volume production and ramp up rates to deliver customer aircraft on a larger scale,” he added.