Aviation novels and novelists are rare. Even more rare are aviation novelists who are also corporate pilots and fighter pilots.
First deliveries of the Intracom General Machinery GM-17 Viper 8 executive aircraft have been made in Russia, where the much-reworked Piper Pressurized Navajo may be operated under an experimental certificate. The company’s managing director, Dr.
Converting a piston twin into a turboprop single may seem like a bizarre idea, but an international team of technicians and engineers in Russia and Switzerland has combined its expertise to produce just such a transmutation. [Beech created the Lightning experimental prototype in the mid-1980s by placing a Garrett TPE331 in the nose of a Baron 58P airframe.–Ed.]
Despite a business dispute with Tekhnoavia (AIN, February, page 10), Geneva-based Intracom General Machinery has vowed to continue the Viper project. The GM-17 Viper is a modified Piper P Navajo, from which the two wing-mounted 425-hp piston engines are removed and a single 750-shp Walter M601E turboprop is placed in the redesigned forward fuselage, among the improvements.
The GM-17 Viper project is in serious jeopardy following several recent developments. The GM-17 is a modified Piper P Navajo on which the two wing-mounted 425-hp piston engines are replaced by a single 750-shp Walter M601E turboprop placed in the redesigned forward fuselage.