First Commuter Craft Customers Begin Builds

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Commuter Craft is ready to welcome the first builders of the company’s two-place homebuilt Innovator to Commuter’s Cartersville, Georgia, factory to begin construction. The planes will be built at the factory where the company says it will take two to three weeks for owners to complete their 51 percent of the aircraft with the plane ready to fly in three months. Commuter Craft founder and president Richard Hogan told AVweb more about the aircraft and the building process in this podcast interview at AirVenture 2018.

Hogan says that first group of builders have all had experience building aircraft before. These "Alpha Builders" have been chosen to vet Commuter Craft’s Builder Assist Program in addition to putting together new airplanes. Once those planes are finished, the company will tweak the program if needed and then bring in a group made up of both new and experienced builders for a second round. General production is scheduled to begin next year.

The Innovator is a composite design with options that include folding wings, a ballistic parachute and seatbelt airbags. The engine options are both Continental Titan models—either the 180-HP IO-340 or the 200-HP IO-370. The 200-HP version has an 850-pound useful load, range of 940 miles and is expected to cruise at an estimated 194 MPH. Pricing runs from approximately $150,000 to $210,000.

Comments (3)

Sounds interesting and is in my backyard. However, does AvWeb have to buy into the marketing hype that startup airframe manufacturer's use when quoting speeds in MPH? It's a serious credibility hit to me and a sign of a company not willing to be a good corporate citizen in the GA world. My guess it's hype at 168 knots, it smacks of frivolity to catch less diligent readers with inflated numbers in MPH.

Posted by: Trip Taylor | July 29, 2018 7:23 PM    Report this comment

Although I agree with you about the conflated speed estimates, what do you expect AVweb to say? "...range of 940 miles and is expected to cruise at an estimated 194 MPH but we here at AVweb doubt that to be accurate." They just report the information they're told.

Posted by: Steve Conaway | July 30, 2018 3:40 AM    Report this comment

Thanks for the comments. I too would like to see an across the board standard adopted but currently virtually all kit aircraft performance is reported in mph. It would be difficult to report in knots when your competitors report in mph.
The good news is that we will have tested numbers on the production version this fall. Proof of concept, ShipOne which flew in 2015 & 2016 tested 75% cruise was 160 kts or 184mph on 180 hp and a fixed pitch prop. The production model has cleaned up aerodynamics, weighs less and has 200 hp with CS prop. We tried to be conservative but even against our closest peer, the RV-14, our numbers look comparable. Wish us luck. We hope to give the market more than we projected.

Posted by: Richard Hogan | August 2, 2018 7:31 PM    Report this comment

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