AOPA Sun ‘n Fun, Lakeland Florida, March 27 – April 1, 2012- Darren Lindblad

It’s very hard to beat crowds of TBM 850 fans, barbeque, and the Thunderbirds.
I just returned from the AOPA Sun ‘n Fun Expo in Lakeland, Florida. This was an opportunity to meet with other Daher-Socata distributors from around the country, as well as some of our counterparts from France. The turnout was enormous and interest was high for the new Elite configuration, as first presented by Nicholas Chabbert, Daher-Socata’s North American President.

Reports indicate that for the (majority) of TBM 700 and 850 operators, comfortable seating for 3 or 4 passengers fits their profile. There has also been a calling for slightly more baggage space. What the Elite configuration (now available as an option) offers buyers of new TBM 850’s is the ability to turn seats 3 and 4 forward-facing. This configuration provides a feeling of community between crew and aft passengers. Then, these operators can opt to leave seats 5 and 6 behind, which offers new expansive area for cargo, accessible from the enormous aft entrance door, complete with cargo net.

The Garmin G1000’s drew equal attention from the crowd, for a 4th year running. Perhaps it’s the triple G1000 displays in series, equipped with synthetic vision and chart view, that keep them coming. I’ve had GV operators sit with me and remark that the display of information is more abundant and helpful that what they are equipped with.

Lastly, for those considering the purchase of a new TBM 850, the 5 years or 1000 hours FREE scheduled maintenance incentives were the topic of many discussions. With this in mind, many potential buyers saw their transition from high performance piston singles, or turbine twins such as the Conquest and King Air, as a logical step.

We look forward to Oshkosh this summer followed by NBAA in Orlando. AVEX enjoys the following and support of our current owners, as well the chance to meet with new interested groups, for this very fast and efficient product.

Darren Lindblad
TBM Specialist
AVEX, Inc. Camarillo