The KLM Flight Academy this week placed purchase deposits for six of Bye Aerospace’s eFlyer 2 light aircraft and eight of the larger eFlyer 4 version. The flight school, which is part of the KLM-Air France airline group, is based at Groningen Airport Eelde in the Netherlands. It will use the all-electric aircraft for initial pilot training.
“We are honored to add the first major airline’s flight academy, KLM Flight Academy, to our expanding list of eFlyer customers,” said Bye Aerospace CEO George Bye. “In addition to helping them become carbon-neutral, eFlyers will help the academy significantly reduce the noise signature in the Eelde area.”
According to the Denver-based manufacturer, the eFlyers will offer fivefold lower operating costs, no carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, and decreased noise, compared with current training aircraft. It estimates they will eventually eliminate the release of millions of metric tons of CO2 each year from flight training activity.
“We are excited to become part of the eFlyer development of Bye Aerospace and look forward to becoming a zero-emission flight academy in support of our parent company’s development and strategy,” said Bart de Vries, managing director of KLM Flight Academy.
The eFlyer 2 features the Garmin G500 TXi avionics system, including high-resolution touchscreen display, VFR- and IFR-compatible GPS, navigation and communications systems, and standby and transponder capabilities as well as electric propulsion information, synthetic vision, terrain and traffic alerts, and geo-referenced charts.
Like the eFlyer 4, the eFlyer 2 is powered by the Safran Engineus air-cooled 110-kW (150-hp) electric motor, built from carbon fiber, and is fitted with the Soteria whole-aircraft emergency recovery parachute system.
The list price for the two-seat model is $489,000. The aircraft has a maximum cruising speed of 159 mph, three hours’ endurance, and a range of 253 miles.
The four-seat eFlyer4 has a maximum cruising speed of 230 mph and a range of 380 miles. Its list price is $627,000.