Cirrus Aircraft’s first conforming Vision SF50, dubbed “C-Zero” (C0), made its maiden flight yesterday from Duluth International Airport, where the company has its headquarters. V1–a non-conforming prototype of the all-composite SF50 single-engine jet–has been flying since July 3, 2008. C0, the first of three conforming flight-test aircraft, was assembled from production-ready drawings, tooling and manufacturing processes, according to Cirrus.
“The Vision Jet handled and performed well and all systems functioned properly,” said Cirrus Aircraft director of engineering, flight-test and chief test pilot Mike Stevens, who flew C0 on a one-hour sortie just after 5 p.m. CDT yesterday. The first flight included checks of controllability and maneuverability, flight envelope testing and speed performance at an intermediate altitude.
Cirrus said it expects the seven-seat jet to enter service in the second half of next year, following FAA certification. EASA certification is anticipated by the end of next year. According to Todd Simmons, Cirrus executive vice president of sales, marketing and support, the company has position holders for nearly 550 of the very light jets.