Friday 29 May 2020

Aeroprakt A 32 Vixxens of New Zealand

For the last 5 years or so most of the new types of sport aircraft were single examples which tells us that most of the new aircraft coming into New Zealand were well established older models such as Tecnams. Alpis, Zenair, Rans and Vans types.  However one more numerous new type was the A 32 Vixxen, the first of which was registered in May 2016:

The A 32 Vixxen was developed by Ukrainian company Aeroprakt from its earlier successful A 22 Foxbat, the designer of both aircraft being Yuri Yakovlev.  The A 32 features an improved wing to body fairing, a 10 cm shorter wingspan and an all flying tailplane, and is 20 knots faster in cruise compared to the A 22, and with the same 100 HP Rotax engine.  The prototype first flew in January 2014 and the first production aircraft was rolled out in April 2015.  I think it was given the name Vixxen in Australia.

Specifications for the A 32 are: length 6.27 metres (20 feet 7 inches), wingspan 9.45 metres (31 feet) and the wing area is 138 square feet.  Empty weight is around 320 Kg (705 pounds) and MAUW in New Zealand as an LSA is 598 Kg (1,32 pounds).  With a 100 HP Rotax 912ULS engine the cruise speed is around 130 mph (113 knots) and the stall speed is quite low at 31 mph (27 knots).

We have had five A 32 Vixxens registered in New Zealand to date, as follows:

The first A 32 to be registered here was ZK-WCB (c/n 10) that was registered to Foxbat Enterprises Ltd (Warren C Butler) of Pukekohe on 2/5/16.  It is photo'd above at Kaipara Flats airfield on 3/12/17.

Next up was ZK-VHC (c/n 040) that was registered to the Hawera Aero Club on 29/11/17.  It is photo'd above at Hawera on 10/3/18 in all white.

Later on the Aero Club applied some trim as in this photo taken at Hawera in early 2019.

The first of a couple of A 32 Vixxens to be based at Parakai was Warren Brown's ZK-CHE2 (c/n 051) that was first registered to him on 12/6/18.  It is photo'd above at Parakai on 24/9/19.  On 1/2/20 ownership changed to the Bay of Islands Aero Club at Kerikeri.

The second A 32 Vixxen to arrive at Parakai in 2018 was ZK-VXN (c/n 056) which was registered to the Dawson-Sheehan Family Trust of Whangaparaoa on 11/10/18.  It is photo'd above at Kaipara Flats airfield on 7/12/19.

And the final A 32 to be registered here for now was ZK-WCV (c/n 066) which was registered to the Whangarei Flying Club of Whangarei on 14/1/19.  It is photo's above at Dargaville on 2/2/19.  It was damaged in a landing accident soon after this and is now out of the air awaiting repairs I understand.

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