EAA Earns STC for TruTrak Autopilot Install System

PMA’d install kits for the lower-priced system are now available for many Cessna 172 models and the 177.

Cessna 172
TruTrak Flight Systems is now selling autopilot install kits for the Cessna 172 F through R models and the Cessna 177.Textron Aviation

TruTrak Flight Systems is now selling autopilot install kits for the Cessna 172 F through R models and the Cessna 177 after the Experimental Aircraft Association obtained the STC for the installation.

TruTrak received “low risk parts manufacturer approval” from the FAA on April 3 for the non-TSO’d Vizion autopilot. The company says it is continuing to work with EAA on the remainder of the autopilot approval process, which expects to wrap up this summer.

TruTrak began selling the install kits today at Sun ‘n Fun in Lakeland, Florida, at its booth in Hangar A. The kits are priced at $1,000 and will include all required mounting brackets, hardware and wiring harness. The total price for the two-axis autopilot is targeted at around $5,000, with a couple of days of shop time estimated to complete the installation.

TruTrak has been working closely with the FAA on a prototype “risk-based PMA” approval process. Under the process, once the agency determines the risk level for a project, PMA requirements are scaled accordingly. Low-risk projects translate to faster approval times and reduced certification costs.

“Receiving the STC and facility PMA gets two of the big steps out of the way in this certification project,” said TruTrak CEO Andrew Barker. “Without the new Risk Based PMA process, none of this would be possible. The FAA has been listening to the problems with PMA and they have stepped up with a great new process that is so much easier to understand and follow.”

Founded in 1999, TruTrak to date has produced autopilots for experimental and light sport aircraft market. TruTrak has also designed and manufactured many cutting-edge autopilots including those used aboard the Virgin Atlantic Global Flyer and Solar Impulse.