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News from Thursday, 3/31/2005

First flight of the TT62 without expected performance data.
Sales price set to rise by approx. 40 –50 %.
from Wilhelm Schröer

According to information given by the HPA High Performance Aircraft Company to their customers who have taken out a purchase option with HPA, the initial flight of the TT62 carried out on 22nd February 2005 did not provide the expected performance data.

HPA expects to receive the necessary licence for the TT62, which is now ready for production, in the second quarter of 2006. Production will go ahead at the same time so that the first planes can be delivered in the third quarter of 2006. It is not yet possible to provide information about annual production as this is dependent on the efficiency of the modulisation and assembly concept.

It will not be possible to realize Heiko Teegen’s dream of producing an aircraft for less than the equivalent of 1 Million Deutsche Marks. The development and production costs have far exceeded the originally calculated figures.

The price given in the pre-sales contracts varied from 450,000 EUR to 490,000 EUR depending on the date of the contract. It will not be possible to maintain these prices as production costs will be considerably higher. It will probably be necessary to charge between 650,000 EUR and 750,000 EUR.

The results of the initial flight of the TT62, their evaluation and the required improvements (climb rate and speed) mean that the TT62 will not be on show at this year’s AERO. HPA needs special permission from the LBA, which can only be provided when certain conditions are fulfilled, in order to fly to the AERO. Road transport, as used for the ILA 2004 in Berlin, is out of the question.

Unfortunately we have here further evidence of a development we have seen with other ambitious aviation projects. Already in the layout phase, incredibly highly praised, the demise of traditional drive mechanisms and established GA producers was predicted. Words like: “…just imagine it is midnight and you are over Greenland at FL 210 with 230 KTS and an hourly consumption of 79 litres…”should now be a thing of the past. And as far as the much criticized quality of the antique piston engines à la Continental and Lycoming are concerned, it will presumably be now all that we have for the foreseeable future.

The Committee of the Malibu Mirage Interest Group MMIG46 is closely watching the development of diesel engines which may be relevant to our aircraft. We are monitoring this together with the Thielert company and a conversion company.

No GA producer was prepared to install Centurion V8 but now the former company policy of “…this engine will never be available in retrofit but only to selected first-time users…”has been taken ad absurdum, manufacturers are turning to precisely the retrofit segment. The Beech Duke, whose Lycomings will be replaced by V8 diesels, will be the real launch customer. After a few false starts, the “PA46”is back under discussion. How far this will get depends rather on the performance potential of the basic engine, which does not look too good at the moment.

Unfortunately there is still no diesel engine suitable for our aircraft in the air working to an acceptable standard.

Dear Malibu-Mirage friends, you see that your Interest Group is keeping “on the ball”. Don’t expect, however, that too much will happen in the next two or three years as far as alternatives in the field of pistons in concerned. The same applies to new aircraft in this class.

Your good old PA46 looks ready to remain what it has been for the last 20 years –the unchallenged most beautiful and economic aircraft of its type.


© MMIG46 e.V.