• Sonex has released plans for two high-wing kit aircraft. (Sonex)
    Sonex has released plans for two high-wing kit aircraft. (Sonex)

Kit aircraft manufacturer Sonex released plans this week for two new designs of high-wing aircraft.

Known best for their low-wing designs, Sonex will soon offer amateur-built kits for high-wing aircraft in both tricycle and tailwheel configurations and with a convential tail and Sonex's trademark Y-tail.

Drawings show a cantilevered wing with no struts and a larger cockpit for seating two people side-by-side. The kit is set to accommodate a range of engines including the ubiquitous Rotax 912 ULS.

Standard fuel capacity is expected to be 75 litres with an option for an added 37 litres in an auxilliary tank.

According to Sonex, the new designs will not focus on "backcountry" performance, but instead offer a good option as a cross-country aeroplane.

"Just like the current fleet of Sonex Aircraft, the Sonex High Wing will be capable of handling short grass strips exceptionally well," the company states, "but winning a STOL competition or flying off a gravel bar is not the intended mission of the aircraft – so many other aircraft already fill that bill quite well.

"Instead, we wanted to bring expanded utility and ease of pilot access to the existing Sonex mission of fun everyday local flying, aerobatics and fuel-efficient and fast long cross-countries to the high wing world."

The aircraft will also be aerobatic to +6/-3 g when flown at or below 476 kg gross weight.

Company projections are for a maximum take-off weight of 600 kg, which means it can be registered with RAAus under the current rules, and an estimated empty weight of 326 kg.

Sonex expects to have the first display aircraft ready for inspection at AirVenture in 2023.

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