Certification provides select Piper PA-24 Comanche aircraft owners a modern and cost-effective autopilot upgrade
Garmin® International, Inc., a unit of Garmin Ltd., today announced it has received Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) approval for the GFC™ 500 autopilot in select Piper PA-24 Comanche aircraft. The GFC 500 autopilot is intended for light piston aircraft and delivers superior in-flight characteristics, self-monitoring capabilities and minimal maintenance needs when compared to older generation autopilot systems.
The GFC 500 autopilot certification for select PA-24 aircraft includes the following models:
The GFC 500 autopilot uniquely integrates with the GI 275 or G5 electronic flight instruments; a combination of either a standby GI 275 or G5 electronic flight instrument interfaced to a G500 TXi™ flight display; or a G3X Touch™ flight display to provide pilots with an economical and modern autopilot solution. The autopilot mode controller contains large dedicated keys and knobs, a control wheel that allows for easy adjustment to aircraft pitch, airspeed and vertical speed, and a Level Mode (LVL) that returns the aircraft to straight-and-level flight with the push of a dedicated button.
The full-featured GFC 500 autopilot provides a long list of existing general aviation aircraft with a simple, lightweight, cost-effective autopilot upgrade path. Incorporating solid state attitude with robust self-monitoring capabilities, the GFC 500 provides superior autopilot performance, greater reliability, and tremendous safety benefits that are similar to those featured on the popular GFC 700 autopilot. In addition to traditional autopilot capabilities, such as altitude hold, vertical speed and heading modes, the GFC 500 also includes altitude preselect, VNAV2, a dedicated LVL button, underspeed and overspeed protection and more. Pilots can also select, couple and fly various instrument approaches, including GPS, ILS, VOR, LOC and back course approaches when paired with a compatible Garmin GPS navigator.
As a standard feature of the GFC 500, pilots receive Garmin Electronic Stability and Protection (ESP), which works to assist the pilot in maintaining the aircraft in a stable flight condition. ESP functions
independently of the autopilot and works in the background while the pilot is hand-flying the aircraft to help avoid inadvertent flight attitudes or bank angles by nudging the pilot to return the aircraft back to a safe flight attitude.
Garmin continues to add additional aircraft models to the growing STC list for the GFC 500 autopilots. To view the most up-to-date aircraft STC list and certifications that are expected to begin in the next 12-months, or to express interest in a specific aircraft make/model, visit www.garmin.com/GFC500.
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1. Does not include PA-24-260C turbocharged models.
2. GTN or GTN Xi series Navigator required.