Atol Starts Water-Taxi Tests

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The team at Atol, in Finland, has started water-taxi testing on the production prototype of their LSA seaplane. The aircraft "worked as planned and proved to be even better than expected," according to the company's blog. The testing took place last week on the river Kemijoki, at the Arctic Circle. "We have been waiting for this day for a long time and surely our clients will appreciate the final product they'll get," reads the blog. The amphib sells for $153,000.

The seaplane has been in development since 2011, and is based on a kit project from the 1980s. The aircraft's wood composite structure provides strength and endurance at a light weight, the company says. The amphib, powered by a Rotax 912 iS engine, operates on mogas, and the wings fold so it can be towed on a trailer. A rear-hinged canopy makes it easy to get in and out without getting wet feet. The airplane was displayed at Aero Friedrichshafen in April; the company hasn't yet announced a show schedule for 2015.