Sebring Grows Again

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Day one of the Sport Aviation Expo in Sebring, Fla. opened Thursday under gray skies and blustery winds (but little of the much-needed rain that drought-stricken Floridians are hoping for) and vendors are expecting a bigger and more diverse version of the show. AVweb will be running daily photo galleries and watch for updates through Monday on our homepage as AVweb staff bring you all the details. According to officials here there are at least 10 manufacturers of Light Sport Aircraft exhibiting at Sebring for the first time in North America and a run through the more than 140 exhibits reveals an ever more interesting array of configurations and designs, including a host of new amphibious designs. LSA sales leader Flight Design is showing off a new model of the CT and, of course Cessna and Cirrus are here with their LSA offerings, the 162 Skycatcher and SRS, respectively, and Cirrus announced it was taking deposits on the SRS.

Cirrus is getting ready to launch the SRS, a European design that includes a Rotax engine but has design changes that make it more familiar to American buyers (toe brakes top the list)and Sebring is the first opportunity for future owners to put their money down. Cessna held a well-attended seminar Thursday morning to acquaint prospective customers with the 162 and its features. But even though the industry is showing signs of maturing there is no shortage of new ideas and new proposed aircraft to keep things fresh and fun for years to come.

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