Diamond Tries To Soothe DA42 Customers

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Diamond Aircraft is offering DA42 position holders a variety of options after suspending the production of the twin, which the company said had 80 percent of the piston twin market. But the insolvency of Thielert Aircraft Engines and the decisions of the insolvency administrator (among them canceling warranty support and TBO prorating) on the diesels prompted Diamond to stop production while it gets alternatives in place. Most of the options involve a significant wait time for delivery but there is one way to get instant gratification if the owner is willing to bet on TAE's recovery from its current woes and Diamond's ability to fill in the support gaps in the meantime.

"A very limited number of TAE-equipped aircraft are available for delivery from distributor inventory. All such customers are eligible for the Diamond DA42 Customer Assistance Program , also announced today, that may address the current support issues for many position holders," Diamond said in a news release. The program essentially subsidizes the increased operating costs of the Thielert engines resulting from the decisions of the insolvency trustee and would be viewed by most as an interim measure until Diamond's own Austro diesel is ready, which could be later this year. Other options include simply waiting for the Austro, waiting for the Lycoming 360 avgas engine option to be ready or asking for a full refund of the deposit (which comes with a $20,000 discount on any other Diamond aircraft. "Diamond enjoys a great, loyal and supportive customer base. With the uncertainty regarding resumption of TAE powered DA42 production and viable options now on the horizon, we designed this program to offer maximum flexibility to our DA42 position holders," said Heike Larson, Diamond's VP of Sales and Marketing.