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Mon, May 29, 2006

Goulian To Fly Extra-Special Extra

Extra Aircraft Designs Specialty Aircraft For Goulian

Extra Aircraft recently unveiled its newest design, the Extra 300SHP, an evolutionary performance upgrade based on the world-class single-seat model 300S which debuted in 1992.

The 300SHP is the brainchild of Walter Extra and his design team based in Dinslaken, Germany. Extra Aircraft collaborated with U.S. Aerobatic Champion and top airshow performer Michael Goulian late last year to create a “next generation” aircraft. The goal was to showcase the capabilities of the leading-edge manufacturer and to push the performance envelope to new heights.

“To achieve the large performance increase desired, we had to refine every last item in the aircraft with the intent of lightening the plane without sacrificing the strength of the machine,” said Walter Extra, founder of Extra Aircraft.

“We take pride in the fact that an Extra has never suffered a structural in-flight failure.”

While almost all major components were affected by the makeover, care was taken to retain Walter’s original design signature with respect to its contour and handling. The sleek canopy and stylish design of the new cowling and tail distinguish this aircraft from its EA-300S cousin.

In addition to freeing the airframe of more than 100 pounds, Extra moved the CG aft for increased maneuverability and decreased stability, a desirable trait in a high-performance unlimited aerobatic machine. With an eye toward creating spectacular tumbling figures for the pilots capable of such maneuvers, there was a complete redesign of the tail.

Putting the finishing touches on this collaboration, Lycoming provided one of the first high-performance engines out of its new “skunk works” performance shop, Thunderbolt Engines. The cowling of Goulian’s one-of-a-kind EA-300SHP will harness a 350HP Thunderbolt, Reno 580 engine.

“This aircraft will be a supreme performer in the aerobatic and airshow world,” said aerobatic pilot Michael Goulian. “I am looking forward to seeing just what this baby can do.”

Although not originally designed as a race aircraft, the new EA-300SHP premiered in Berlin on Saturday, May 27, at the Red Bull Air Races. It will make its U.S. debut at EAA Airventure Oshkosh 2006 starting Monday, July 24.

Extra Aircraft is a premier aircraft manufacturing company headquartered in Lancaster, Pa., with a manufacturing plant in Germany. Founded in the 1980s by veteran aerobatic pilot Walter Extra, Extra Aircraft became a U.S.-owned and -operated company in 2003. The Extra product line includes six highly specialized models: the EA-200, EA-300L, EA-300S, and EA-300LP aerobatic aircraft, as well as the EA-400 and EA-500, business and touring aircraft.

FMI: www.ExtraAircraft.com, www.mikegoulian.com

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