A new two-seat light aircraft, designed and built in France by start-up Elixir Aircraft, is being unveiled at the show
The Elixir is a low-wing, composite type, built, says the company, “with the pilot's comfort in mind”.
“It is a safe, innovative aircraft that will be very easy to fly, ” says Arthur Leopold-Leger, chief executive of the La Rochelle-based venture, which he founded fin December 2014 with partners Nicolas Mahuet and Cyril Champenois.
C3 Technologies – also based in La Rochelle – is building the composite parts for the Elixir. “It will only consist of around eight big pieces, ” says Champenois, who is also the company’s chief organisation officer. “The wing is a single structure, so too is the fuselage. This not only makes the aircraft safer [as there are fewer glued parts] but it speeds up the production process, ” he adds.
Other key features of the Elixir are its emergency parachute system, manufactured by BRS, a bespoke Garmin/Mid Continent glass cockpit, and an “anti-exploding fuel tank” which runs from wing-tip to wing-tip, ” says Champenois.
The Elixir will be powered by a 100hp Rotax 912iS piston engine, driving an MT constant speed propeller.
Priced at 160, 000 euros ($180, 000), it is projected to have a cruise speed of between 140kt (260km/h) to 170kt depending on altitude, a fuel burn of 14l/hr, an empty weight of 265kg (583lb) a payload of 280kg.
The aircraft is now in its detailed design phase and Elixir plans to built the first model in the middle of 2016 and fly it fly it for the first time later in the year. Certification and service entry are scheduled for 2017.
“We have opened the orderbook, and have so far sold three aircraft, each with a Euro 5, 000 deposit, " says Leopold-Leger.
The success of the programme may provide a springboard for other bigger aircraft designs based on the same manufacturing process. “We will see how well the Elixir is received first. But that is our intention, ” Leopold-Leger adds.