Cessna To Proceed With LSA Program

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Cessna Aircraft on Tuesday greenlighted its light sport aircraft (LSA) program and said it plans to unveil a full-scale mock-up and program details at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wis., later this month. (Watch AVweb's Cessna LSA video from Sun 'n Fun.) The move to commit to the project comes just shy of a year after Cessna publicly announced it was working on an LSA concept airplane at AirVenture 2006. "After conducting extensive market research, it is clear to us there is a great need for this aircraft as we strive to drive down the cost of flying and learning to fly," said Cessna Chairman, President and CEO Jack Pelton. "We believe this aircraft will make a major contribution to stimulating new pilot starts and will encourage already-licensed pilots to continue to fly because it will be more affordable." In making the announcement, the Cessna chief noted: "We have developed a business case that makes sense; we have incorporated several innovative features into the design; and we believe we can deliver the finest aircraft in the category, combined with our extensive customer service, flight training and distribution networks, at an attractive price." Details of the program will be announced at a press conference during the EAA show, and the general public will be able to garner more information about Cessna's LSA during an AirVenture forum to be held Monday, July 23 from 1:00 to 2:15 p.m. at the Honda Forum, Pavilion 7.