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Sun, Mar 17, 2024

Vulcanair NA Sets Down Roots

V1.0 Manufacturer Takes On Textron with Italian Style

Vulcanair North America has announced a home base at the Elizabethtown Corporate Airpark, based at Curtis L. Brown, Jr. Airfield of North Carolina.

The manufacturer will become "the fourth Part 23 General Aviation flight training aircraft manufacturer in the United States." They'll be producing the Vulcanair V1.0 for the US market, a version of the V1 for the US domestic market. The original Italian manufacturer was a parts supplier for Partenavia, who later ended up with ownership of a good lineup of GA aircraft that ran the gamut from traditional trainer planes to high-wing twins. Those Vulcanairs won't be in the cards for US production just yet, understandable given their relative cost and the middling demand for piston twins, but Ameravia is happy to import them for those who want one. The V1.0 will make for a good selection, instead - a Skyhawk competitor with Italian panache. It sports a familiar 180-hp air-cooled Lycoming flat-four, 2+2 layout, and extremely similar performance specs, all at a price that just might actually undercut the Textron version of the long-lived Skyhawk legend.

Vulcanair North America's parent company, Ameravia Inc, believes they can take on the C-172 in sales, seeing plenty of growth in the cards for the North American market. The giant upswell in pilot training required to sustain the airlines alone means that large numbers of decades-old legacy aircraft will require replacement soon, to the tune of "at least 1,000 new Part 23 flight training aircraft per year". Ameravia CEO Chris Benaiges feels like they'll be sitting pretty to address such demand, since the industry as a whole can barely produce half that many. This year, the production backlog remains at about 3 years for the average manufacturer, leaving lots of room for Vulcanair to meet immediate demand. They believe they can work to keep delivery dates within one year of purchase, and their new home base will be key to that. Today, the brand has 26 planes on order, with a total cost around $450,000 at delivery. The brand anticipates a production capacity of 96 aircraft per year at their Elizabethtown facility by 2025.

FMI: www.ameraviainc.com

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