Although Special LSA plus Experimental LSA run neck-and-neck with Sport Pilot eligible kit-built aircraft in U.S. aircraft registrations, America remains more kit-oriented than most other countries.
Most western nations have kit programs of some kind but since their regulations have longer allowed fully-built aircraft, the European brands tend to slightly lead in SLSA deliveries while American producers thoroughly dominate kit-built aircraft sales.
Two other reasons also account for this situation.
A kit-built aircraft can lower the total cost of acquisition in trade for you investing your time. Many find those hours highly enjoyable and educational so kits may always be popular. In addition, a kit-built aircraft builder can do his or her own maintenance although a ELSA can qualify for this advantage as well.
Now Available In America!
Under former importer Pete Krotje, Jabiru grew to be one of our important LSA entries, with a fleet ranking of #7 in the USA and 118 models flying (more details on our Tableau Public website). Nothing will change that.
Current importer US Sport Planes, under the direction of industry veteran, Scott Severen, reports doing well even in this challenging business environment. Scott’s many years in this sector gives him insight others lack and he is using that knowledge to make a sea change for Jabiru aircraft in the USA.
Now, you can buy a fully ready-to-fly, fully FAA-accepted Light-Sport Aircraft …or… you can order a kit and save tens of thousands. Even though Special LSA Jabirus enjoy relatively modest prices when compared to many rivals, those seeking a lower price point or looking for an activity many enjoy can try kit building — assembling your own aircraft, doing so your way, and ending with an intimate awareness of every bolt and rivet.
If those choices aren’t broad enough for your needs, Scott has a long history brokering previously-owned Jabirus and other LSA. Over many years of pursing this sector, he has become an expert on the best second-hand aircraft that may satisfy your interest.
A New Focus on Kit-Built
Welcome to kit-built Jabiru aircraft models, from the training-oriented J170 to the fast, large cruiser J230-D, and right up to and including the four-seat J430. Let’s put the fresh offering in perspective.
“It’s an interesting year for Jabiru,” Scott declared!
During the Coronavirus panic, Jabiru Australia designed and began 3D printing face shields, collaborating with other businesses in Australia using 3D printers to increase production volumes. This has been well received as it has kept employment up plus fulfilled a need in the country.
Here in America, Scott enthused, “In the U.S., 2020 started out flying high and fast! While activity slowed a little with the pandemic, even with the major aviation shows cancelling, the market is returning to a vibrant pace.”
“We are now offering all three kits,” Scott noted. He referred to the J170-D two door; the 230-D three door, and 430-D four place aircraft. “The kits are suitable for home assembly or with builder assistance in Tennessee,” Scott added.
To learn more, visit the webpage for Jabiru kits in the USA; lots of details are presented.
He continued, “We also continue to have numerous inquiries for previously-owned J250-SP, J230-SP and particularly for J230-D aircraft.”
Trying to be helpful and flexible during these unusual economic times, Scott elaborated, “If you have been thinking of upgrading to a newer plane, of course, I’d like to visit with you!” Yet he said, “If life has changed and you want or need to sell your Jabiru, I’ll be happy to review our resources with you.”
“In short, we provide as much or as little help as you like,” Scott clarified. “This can be from a ‘one stop shop,’ where we bring your Jabiru to our US Sport Planes facility in Texas, go through all the paperwork including service bulletins and inspections to reduce liabilities to you as a seller, handling the entire process in a ‘No Fuss, No Muss’ transaction. Or, we can simply discuss what items are most important for you to take care of before you sell.”
Learn more about all things Jabiru in the USA by calling (940-597-6860) or sending an email.
I close with the following video review of the configuration and flight qualities of the J170 powered by the 80-horsepower 2200 Jabiru engine. If you are interested in the J230 series, try this video. For an owner’s perspective, watch this video interview. both productions of Dave Loveman’s The Ultralight Flyer YouTube channel.
Require a qoute for an Stol 750 Zenith / Jabiru 3300 cc engine mount.
Dan Johnson says
You will need to go to Zenith Aircraft about an airframe kit. They can inform you about the Jabiru engine but it will be supplied by another party. Zenith can advise you.
Brad S. says
What is gen 4? How does it differ from prior engine? I have read less than glowing reports on 3300.
Dan Johnson says
Hi Brad: Gen 4 refers to the current (fourth) generation of the Jabiru engine line. While this, like any engine, is sometimes taken to task when an accident occurs, Jabiru has a good track records and Gen 4 is their best yet. For more details and to ask more about reputation, talk to US Sport Planes (the new engine/aircraft seller in North America) or Arion Aircraft (the longtime service center for Jabiru engines. They’re the experts in the USA.
Shane Wiley says
I have an owner-built J430 that is eight years old in Australia. It had to be built as an “Experimental” but was basically done on the factory line. As an Experimental with four seats (ideally for three adults or 2+2 with kids), it is fully IFR and a good stable IFR platform.
On newer aircraft being built at the factory on a recent visit, I did note a huge change to the panel with full integrated moving map on the large second screen. I have to say it will always be my preference to have a dedicated radio cut out display, but things move on, I suppose.
The Gen 4 engine is in my view a game changer. I upgraded to it.
And [for something very different], follow the progress of the J432 (a twin engined model).