Diamond Aircraft has announced that it is developing a new engine in conjunction with Streyr, a longtime maker of diesel engines for the marine market. While the company released few details on the engine, it is known that it will be a 280 hp in-line six-cylinder diesel — Diamond apparently prefers the terms "jet fuel piston aviation engine." The engine will feature an integrated case and cylinder heads. Its in-line configuration makes it very thin, while still not being much taller than a conventional horizontally opposed six-cylinder aircraft engine. The engine is planned to be the production powerplant for the Diamond DA50 five-place single and Diamond's under-development Future Small Aircraft twin. The prospects are intriguing for several reasons.
Diamond sister company Austro Engines will develop and produce the engine at its facility alongside Diamond Aircraft in Wiener Neustadt, Austria. The company now produces the 170 hp Austro AE-300 diesel, which powers the Diamond DA-42NG twin. Austro's involvement in the project is encouraging for a few reasons. The company expresses its commitment to GA and to Jet fuel engines. It remains the only company in the world to certify and produce in any numbers a diesel airplane, the DA42. It also showed its agility when the original supplier of that engine, Thielert, went bankrupt and Diamond stepped in, created a new engine company and a new engine design and had the whole thing certified and flying in little more than a year's time.