Epic Aircraft holds 73 deposits for its Epic 1000 six-place turboprop, a direct derivative of the kit-built Epic LT, director of sales and marketing Mike Schrader told AIN. It held 60 deposits at this time last year.
“It’s been a good year, from a sales standpoint,” he said. “The price is $2.95 million, but that will change after certification, and FAA type certification should be coming by the end of the year. We won’t make a delivery until next year because we are getting our production certificate and our type certificate right around the same time,” he continued.
When asked what’s slowing down certification, Schrader pointed out that composite construction means there is a lot to test. “There is no one thing slowing certification down. We’ve tested fuselages and wings, everything to destruction, then made small changes and tested again. We had to test the pressure vessel to more than 18 psi, almost three times that needed for typical use of the structure. And it took it. Another change was to the air induction system, which made the airplane and engine more efficient, plus helped with cooling,” he said. “It’s nice, though, to be just counting down the months to certification. We are really close now.”
“There are more than 50 of the Epic LT kit-built turboprops out there, and those owners love them. They are so efficient and fast. We’ve done a FlightAware analysis of turboprops, and we feel that the Epic LTs out there are anywhere from 15 to 50 knots faster than our direct competitors on a typical mission,” he said.
The certified Epic 1000 will be equipped with a 1,200-shp Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-67A and a three-screen Garmin 1000 avionics suite. It is expected to cruise between 265 and 325 ktas, with a maximum range of 1,650 nm at 265 ktas, burning 40 gph. Anticipated takeoff and landing distances are 1,600 feet and 1,840 feet (both over 50-foot obstacles), respectively.
“We really shine when it comes to load-carrying capacity. We can have full fuel and go some 1,300 to 1,600 nm depending on the power settings and still carry 1,100 pounds,” said Schrader. The company brought several Epic LTs to Sun ’n’ Fun 2017 with various features, some of which will be included on the certified Epic 1000.