Anyone who’s ever seen an Extra in action at an air show will find the name suitable for this particular aircraft – which is in fact brought skyward by an “extra” amount of class.
However, the aircraft in fact got its name from its inventor, Walter Extra. The first of these propeller-driven aircraft left Mr. Extra’s factory at the Schwarze Heide airfield in Heide near Dinslaken, Germany in 1993. The aircraft designed by the repeat German champion in aerobatics are notable for their extreme maneuverability, which in turn is attributable to their powerful engines, light weight, small wingspan, and large rudders and rudder throw.
The Flying Bulls’ two-seater Extra 300L is used for publicity events, aerobatics training, and air show performances, has appeared at numerous air shows in Poland, Denmark, Germany and Austria, and is based on the one-seat Extra 300S and Extra 300. Unlike the latter, the Extra 300L’s wings are lower down – an arrangement which, while providing no particular aerodynamic advantage, makes boarding more comfortable for the pilot and passenger. The 300 gets its name from its horsepower, which is developed by a six-cylinder Lycoming AEIO 540 engine that accelerates the aircraft to a maximum speed of 407 kilometers an hour, while allowing for an ascent rate of 975 meters a minute, a maximum cruising altitude of 4,875 meters, and a range of up to 650 kilometers. A four-blade MT Propeller prop enables the pilot to guide the plane efficiently during looping or simple rotations.
The importance of these figures for passengers has always been readily visible on touch down on the faces of journalists and prominent personalities such as Smudo, Sebastian Vettel, Oliver Polzer, Christian Schiester and Daniel Schuhmacher. Up to 8 Gs and numerous race-like flying maneuvers enable passengers to directly experience the tension and excitement of aerobatics.
During these sessions, the passenger sits in the front seat, where minimal instrumentation concerning air speed, altitude, and the number of Gs is visible. The cockpit, which is reserved for the pilot, contains extensive instrumentation.
The Flying Bulls’ Extra 300L went into service in 2008 and only a privileged few are permitted to pilot the plane and come along as passengers.