Lycoming says that the fuel-injected IO-390-A1A6 includes a robust rotating system, specifically developed cylinders, tuned induction system, Lycoming’s roller tappets, Slick Start ignition, and front facing fuel servo. Following this first model, Lycoming will continue to certify different versions of the IO-390 to fit customer requirements. Walsh says that the primary market is attracted to the currently
available 390 experimental series.
“It’s a great engine,” says Walsh. “It’s got that extra horsepower, reliability, and bulletproof kind of aspect of the traditional 360.”
Echelon STC program
Lycoming first showcased its Echelon STC in a 1975 Cardinal 177RG at the EAA AirVenture show in OshKosh, WI, in August. The Cardinal 177RG was originally equipped with a Lycoming IO-360-A engine.
Lycoming says it presently offers an uncertified IO-390-X Series engine for the experimental marketplace, and many Cardinal RG owners requested a certified power plant upgrade STC for their airplanes.
“Lycoming is responding to our customers who have inquired about power plant upgrades for their airplane,” says Racine. “The Lycoming Echelon STCs provide premium power plant and firewall forward solutions for legacy aircraft.”
The Echelon STC package will include a new or factory rebuilt Lycoming IO-390-A1A6 engine, new McCauley governor, Slick Start ignition, and recommendations for overhauling the two-blade propeller used on most flying Cardinal RGs. Given that the existing IO-360-A and the new IO-390-A1A6 have the same footprint and major systems, upgrade installation for the Cardinal RG is straightforward without major modification.
Lycoming offers these retrofits on older aircraft exclusively through Cessna’s authorized service centers. Lycoming’s relationship with Cessna goes back more than 50 years. “They’re our No. 1 gross supplier,” says Walsh.
Lycoming also partnered with McCauley Propeller for the Echelon STC program. Walsh says that in addition to the partnerships with Cessna and McCauley, it plans to focus on working and partnering more with OEMs.
“This program offers a fully certified drop-in solution,” says Walsh.
Lycoming’s Echelon STCs are expected to be certified in the fourth quarter of 2008.
Walsh says that Lycoming’s new engine will provide the same reliability as older models. “There’s clearly a different level of complexity, maintenance, and monitoring with these engines,” he says. “People need to be trained properly. We will offer training programs through our authorized service centers.
“If you own a BMW, you don’t take your BMW to a mom and pop shop when you need work done. You take it to the right place.”
Cardinal STC developed directly with Cessna and McCauley.
The STC covers replacing the original IO-360 Lycoming engine in the Mooney M20E, M20F and M20J with a new or remanufactured IO-390-A3A6 engine.
Lycoming is pursuing engine certification for its IO-390-A3A6 as well as a STC to install the engine in three legacy models of the Mooney Airplane Company’s M20 series of aircraft.
The Alaskan firm already holds IO-360 installation STC for Cessna C-175.