AOPA Online published an article today about changes occurring at ICON Aircraft, manufacturer of the unique A5 composite amphibian. ICON has responded to the outrage expressed by potential owners concerning the conditions required of the original purchase contract for the A5. The once-darling of the new aircraft design market seemed to fall out of popularity quickly because of their sales contract.
ICON has also announced that they are laying off 150 workers at their plant in Vacaville, CA and scaling down their 2016 production schedule considerably.
In part, the article said:
The new purchase agreement eliminates the previous company-imposed 30-year airframe limit. It also sets a cost cap for recurring 10-year airframe overhauls at $15,000, and does away with a requirement for a functioning cockpit video/audio recorder. It ends other onerous terms such as a $2,000 ownership transfer fee, a requirement for 10 hours of solo flight before taking passengers, and company buyback rights for airplanes sold within 12 months of original purchase.
Icon’s new contract requires all buyers to satisfactorily complete company-authorized flight training; maintain their aircraft at authorized service centers; carry flight data recorders that show how their airplanes are being flown in case of an accident; and agree not to sue Icon unless the NTSB determines a crash is the company’s fault.
“We’ll own our mistakes, and we ask others to own theirs,” Hawkins said. “Reducing product liability costs is important because it reduces the cost of aircraft and allows manufacturers to spend that money on product development.”
You can access the full article with the link above – and another related ICON article on the Forbes.com website.