• GippsAero's Airvan 8 test bed departs Avalon with the glider hook arrangement evident at the rear. (John Absolon)
    GippsAero's Airvan 8 test bed departs Avalon with the glider hook arrangement evident at the rear. (John Absolon)
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GippsAero, the GA manufacturing arm of Mahindra Aerospace, has sold 10 Airvan 8s to China for use in sport aviation.

The first aircraft was delivered to Jinggong Group at a ceremony at GippsAero's Latrobe Valley base last Friday. The aircraft will be used for both parachute and glider towing operations for the Chinese Ministry of Sport.

According to sources, the sale process took more than 10 years, with the first contact with Jinggong being made as far back as 2006.

The final pieces of the deal fell into place just before the Australian International Airshow, when GippsAero test pilots were able to have the Airvan 8 certified with a hook for towing gliders.

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