While the Colibri and it's manufacturer New Horizons Aircraft may be new to
the aviation marketplace, the designer of the Colibri Jim D. Stewart has
been involved in aviation for over 30 years.
Two of his most
noticeable designs being the EAA's Bi-Plane and the redesign of the
replica metal Mustang the P-51D. In early 2004 Michael L Hudkins
President of New Horizons Inc. met with Jim Stewart and began the
process of designing an building a plane for the lightsport aircraft
Two methods of construction are used on the craft, with the fuselage
and all of fairings being made from all composite materials. All of the
bearing surfaces, wings and tail section are all metal construction.
The control system utilizes a center stick and dual rudder and brake
controls. Flaps are not deemed necessary because of the large wing area
and wing loading. The throttle quadrants are located on the left hand
side of the pilot. The cabin is 51 inches wide and can fit two very
large pilots comfortably side by side. Steering on the ground is via a
castering nosewheel and brakes.
Two 12.5 gallon fuel tanks are located in the fuselage area directly
behind the pilots.
The twin boom tail configuration and pusher prop are used to give the
pilot excellent visibility while flying the plane, since there is no
prop obstructing visibility and the wings do not obstruct the pilots
vision when turning left or right.
Power is supplied by the 6 cylinder 120 HP air cooled direct drive
Jabiru engine. It is expected that the plane will be pushing the upper
limits of the lightsport aircraft category for speed once it is flying.
The factory is looking to have the plane flying by the end of January
2008, and expects to complete testing and start production and delivery
of aircraft in early 2009. Current production facilities encompass over
10,000 sq ft with another 17,000 available if necessary.