Stratos Aircraft will make a new, larger version of its Model 714 single-engine personal jet proof-of-concept (POC) aircraft available as a builder-assisted kit beginning in the fourth quarter, the company announced on Monday at EAA AirVenture. The new Model 716X features seating for six and is larger and wider than the 714, with a fuselage that is 31 inches longer and two inches wider than that of the 714. It will be powered by a 3,000-pound-thrust Pratt & Whitney Canada JT15D-5 turbofan and feature an electronic engine control.
The 716X’s instrument panel will feature a variety of Garmin products, including dual G3X EFIS, GTN 750 GPS/com, and integrated autopilot. In addition, the jet will have air conditioning, a fully automated pressurization system, custom switch panels, and several Mid-Continent products, including a Standby Attitude Module with backup battery and a pressurization monitor.
Engineering manager Carsten Sundin said that the Redmond, Oregon company has already sold the first kit to a current Epic LT owner and that the company’s goal is to sell three kits per year for now and eventually to put the aircraft into certified production four to five years in the future. He estimated that the average kit would take 2,500 hours to build, approximately the same time as an Epic LT single-engine turboprop. Fred Hadlich, flight-test program manager for Stratos, said the company was “fully funded to be a kit-aircraft program.”
The 714 proof of concept aircraft has flown 185 flight hours, achieved an altitude of 25,000 feet, and a maximum true airspeed of 370 knots, said Sundin. Over the last year, the company has flown the aircraft pressurized and concentrated on refining its flight test data acquisition system and drag cleanup, including the installation of fairings on the flap hinges.
Sundin said that because the 716X is slightly larger than the 714 it would likely be slightly slower than the 714’s projected 415 knots. Stratos expects to have price and performance data for the 716X available later this year.