GippsAero, the Australian aircraft manufacturer and subsidiary of the Mahindra Group, has successfully completed the first flight of its new aircraft, the GA10. The aircraft, which is the first single turbo-prop to be designed and developed in Australia, is a 10 seat multi role aircraft based on the very successful GA8 AIRVAN utility aircraft. The first flight took place at GippsAero’s home base at Latrobe Regional Airport in eastern Victoria on Tuesday the 1st of May 2012.
Powered by a Rolls Royce 250 turbo prop engine, the GA10 fits a unique niche in the market and will suit a wide range of applications from passenger and freight work to air survey and surveillance roles.
Arvind Mehra, Executive Director and CEO of Mahindra Aerospace said “We are extremely proud of the successful first flight of our first turboprop. It is another important milestone towards reaching our goal of providing a family of economical utility aircraft to the aviation market”
CEO of GippsAero, Dr Terry Miles, announced “The GA10 will bring an entry level turbo prop utility aircraft to the market place enabling operators to make the not inconsiderable step of moving from piston to turbo prop power. The projected low purchase price and low operating costs of the GA10, coupled with its great versatility, will offer operators a commercially viable multi role turbo prop aircraft.”
Test Pilot, Tony Morris and GippsAero Flight Test Engineer, Gerhard Jordaan were on board the GA10 for this memorable occasion. Once in the air the GA10 circled the airport several times for approx. 20mins as well as one low approach including a go-around.
The first flight was considered a great outcome according to Engineering and Projects Manager at GippsAero, Gerhard Jordaan “The first flight was a great success, as it showed that the GA10 retained the inherent stability and docile flying qualities of the successful GA8. The first flight has shown that the GA10 design has a great potential to meet the objectives of the development and certification flight test programme, which will now continue towards the planned CASA Type Approval in 2013.”
With the completion of first flight the GippsAero engineering team will subject the prototype to an intensive programme of static and flight test to gain a CASA Type Certificate for the GA10. It is anticipated that the new type will be available for customer delivery in the first half of 2013.
The company is also soon to announce details of a deposit program that will provide an opportunity for operators to secure a purchase position.