Certification of Sandel's Avilon Flight Deck Expected Early Next Year

Priced at $175,000 installed, the King Air retrofit cockpit is less than half the cost of competing retrofits.

Sandel Avilon
Sandel's Avilon retrofit avionics system for the King Air family packs a lot of capability into a package that is priced far lower than competing systems.Sandel

Sandel Avionics is continuing testing of its Avilon integrated flight deck, created as a lower-priced alternative for the King Air retrofit market, as the company reports certification and initially deliveries are on pace for early next year.

Flying had the chance to see the latest version of Avilon at the NBAA Convention in Orlando, Florida, and it's clear that the avionics system has evolved greatly since it was first announced three years ago. Then, the element of Avilon that turned heads was its "guaranteed flyaway" price of $175,000, which is less than half the installed price of competing King Air retrofit choices.

Sandel was able to keep the total price low by designing the modular avionics with fast installation time in mind. The avionics system includes four large 12.4-inch touch screen LCD flight displays, two smaller data entry touch screens, radios, flight management computers, dual AHRS, audio panel, ADS-B-compliant Mode S transponder, RNP approach capabilities, and flight director/autopilot (minus the autopilot servos, which are retained).

Certification for the entire King Air family is expected in January, said Larry Riddle, vice president of sales and marketing for Sandel. Look for a full flight report in an upcoming issue of Flying.