Cirrus had one of the largest booths at the Long Beach Convention Center, and it seemed that they and their neighbor Eclipse were drawing the most attention. Lots of people from Cirrus were on booth duty, including Alan Klapmeier. In comparison, the small Cessna booth had one person behind the counter handing out brochures. It all reminded me of Comdex (the premier computer industry show) back in in 1984, when high-energy startups dominated the floor.
Apparently a lot of business gets discussed here. The French diesel people were closeted in the Cirrus booth for a while. TheyÂ’re appaently well ahead of TCM, and we might possibly see diesel powered Cirri in Europe in the next year ot two. But it will probably be much longer before they appear in the US due to lack of a domestic support network.
TCM: although theyÂ’ve shipped a FADEC 550 to Cirrus, it will probably be Â“about a yearÂ” before they get around to the 360, unless they experience Â“some pressure from the OEMs.Â” CirrusÂ’ attitude, however, is that they donÂ’t want to pressure their vendors. They believe that theyÂ’ll get better products, with better support, if they wait for competition to bring the vendors to their door.
ARNAV folks seem to turn a bit sour when asked about Cirrus. They were showing their engine monitoring software running on the ICDS 2000, along with the sensor installation kit. They say that the product is done, and the ball is now in CirrusÂ’ court. Cirrus says that it is still waiting for ARNAV to deliver. Maybe theyÂ’ll talk to each other at the show and find some common ground. ARNAV also said that theyÂ’ll announce another OEM installation for the ICDS2000 early next year, but Â“if he told me now heÂ’d have to kill meÂ”.
BRS: Robert Nelson, President of BRS, was at the Cirrus booth. TheyÂ’ve patented a new parachute material thatÂ’s 30% lighter than the current stuff. But theyÂ’ll need investment money to develop it, so lighter chutes wonÂ’t be appearing in Cirrus aircraft anytime soon.
The SR22 out at Long Beach airport attracted a lot of attention. Its longer wings with a more sculpted wingtip give it an even more graceful appearance than the 20. Its interior is a cut above the 20 also, even in this early version. The interior improvements, plus the all-electric option, might trickle down to the 20 someday, but Cirrus folks have developed a strong Â“make no promisesÂ” discipline.
There was a lot of ambivalence about Â“that websiteÂ” (as some folks at Cirrus refer to this website). They see the occasional flare up of Â“downright falseÂ” information with a lot more alarm than many of us who are more accustomed to internet forum antics. I hope they come to see sr20.org as a valuable resource. Meanwhile, they are giving some thought to a Â“moderatedÂ” customer service forum on their own website.