The South African kit manufacturer celebrated a milestone this week when the first Sling TSi built at the company’s Southern Californian builder-assistance center completed its 40-hour Phase I flight-test program.
The four-seat Sling has been offered as a kit for some time but the company has been busy setting up a stateside builder-assist program at its Torrance, California, base. This particular Sling was built by Algen Albritten. Described as a “serial entrepreneur,” Albritten, normally a Jacksonville, Florida, resident, lived in SoCal starting in February 2019 through the completion and Phase I testing this month. Because he’s a newly minted pilot, Albritten handed flight testing over to The Aircraft Factory’s Jean D’Assonville.
“I wanted something rugged and easy to fly… I’m a new pilot, so I wanted an airplane that would be simple and stable to fly, as well as get me where I wanted to go… the TSi is already meeting my expectations. I can’t wait to fly it home in the next week or so,” noted Albritten.
The four-seat Sling gets a claimed cruise speed of 155 knots from a 141-HP turbocharged Rotax 915is. Kit price with all the quickbuild options as well as the engine, propeller, avionics, and fully electronic instruments is just over $161,000.