abc
QUICK LINKS:

Cirrus Jet Soars in First Test Flight

Updated: 03/25/2014 10:09 PM
Created: 03/25/2014 9:33 PM WDIO.com
By: Travis Dill
tdill@wdio.com

Cirrus Aircraft is pushing the throttle with their new jet named the Vision. After years of development the plane took it's first test flight on Monday.

Cirrus has been an aviation leader since creating a plane with carbon fiber instead of aluminum, but those have all been propeller planes. The Vision will add a jet to the company's fleet.

Test Pilot Mike Steven is excited about the milestone.

“It turns out it's a lot easier to fly than the prop airplanes, which are already fairly easy to fly. It's smooth, it's quiet, it's a jet, it's cool,” Stevens said.

He says the Vision will be unique in the personal aircraft industry.

“You can fly higher, you can fly faster, you can fly farther and carry more stuff,” Steven said.

He said the first flight was smooth, but the single hour of fly-time took years of work and dedication from engineers like Paul Brey, Senior Vice President of Product Development for Cirrus.

“There's people here that have a decade of their life tied up in this. A plane doesn't happen quickly. I doesn't happen overnight, especially a good one, and this is going to be a good one,” Brey said.

He leads the team developing the Vision, and he is proud Cirrus could bring more jobs to Duluth with the project.

“When the economy went bad in 2008 we slimmed down to actually about 14 people on the project, and now we've staffed up to about 250,” Brey said.

Hundreds more work at Cirrus on the company's other models, but every employee was able to sign the wing of the Vision test plane. CEO Dale Klapmeier said they will take pride in the accomplishment, but he also wants to thank Duluth for supporting aviation.

“That goes to the whole community. Everybody in this community should be proud of what's being accomplished from this community, and from the people here. That's who's getting this airplane in the air,” Klapmeier said.

He said the Vision should be ready for customers late next year, but Cirrus will have to build two more test planes for Federal Aviation Administration testing.

Duluth history will remember the first personal jet took off from Duluth International Airport, and the Vision will keep aviation soaring here in the Northland.

“Duluth is an aviation hub in this country, and I think we'll always be that,” Klapmeier said.

The list price for the Vision is nearly $2 million, and Cirrus leaders say over 500 customers have already reserved one.

Front Page

  • Woman Hospitalized after Armed Standoff with Deputies in Douglas County

    A 22-year-old Lake Nebagamon woman was hospitalized on Wednesday evening after an armed standoff with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office. 

  • City of Tower Starts Dredging on Multi-Million-Dollar Harbor Project

    The City of Tower is starting a new phase of an old dream. Back in June, WDIO's sister station KSTP reported that Tower's multi-million-dollar Harbor Renaissance Project hadn't gone anywhere in seven years. But Wednesday, the City said they're moving forward.

  • Minnesota Food Charter Launched at DECC

    Around five hundred people flocked to the DECC for the Minnesota Statewide Food Access Summit. One of the big events? The launch of the of the Minnesota Food Charter. Only four other states have a food charter, but Food Charter Steering Committee Chair Mindy Kurzer said number five is unique.

  • Bong Bridge to Reopen Friday

    The Duluth-bound lanes of the Richard I. Bong Bridge are expected to reopen Friday morning after a summer of construction.  Superior-bound lanes have remained open this year but will be closed next year.

  • TV Campaign Ads Make Wealth an Issue in Minn. Election

    It seems an hour doesn't go by without several television campaign ads criticizing a candidate for having millions of dollars or trying to line his or her pockets at government expense. Class warfare is nothing new in politics, but it certainly is more pronounced in Minnesota this year because of two Republican candidates: Stewart Mills and Mike McFadden. They've been the target of a barrage of attack ads aimed at their personal wealth and how they accumulated it.

 

Lake Effect Snow Advisory

WI AREAS AFFECTED: Iron
Expires: 10/31/2014 11:00 AM

Lake Effect Snow Advisory

MI AREAS AFFECTED: Gogebic; Houghton; Keweenaw; Ontonagon; Southern Houghton
Expires: 10/31/2014 12:00 PM

Lakeshore Flood Advisory

MI AREAS AFFECTED: Alger; Baraga; Gogebic; Houghton; Keweenaw; Marquette; Ontonagon
Expires: 10/31/2014 2:00 PM

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement