It doesn’t always have to be historic. But when a brand-new aircraft lands in Salzburg to enrich the collection of air-worthy Flying Bulls as an exhibit, it can be assumed that it will boast special features that will not only create a buzz among pilots. For example, the Italian design of the P.68TC Observer alone sets it apart from the class of light twin-engine aircraft. What immediately catches the eye from the outside and promises a special experience from the inside is the fully glazed front section. Flying Bulls pilots who have already had the pleasure of flying the Observer describe the outstanding all-round view from the modern cockpit as having the feel of a helicopter. But passengers sitting in the rear four seats also enjoy an excellent view thanks to the high-deck concept and large windows, which makes the Observer ideal for panoramic flights.
Even if the visibility invites you to throttle the speed of the two Lycoming engines to enjoy the view, the Observer can still accelerate to 160 knots when required. With a remarkable flying time of 7 hours, it is therefore not only faster, but also lasts longer than a helicopter. These advantages are appreciated by the police and coast guard, who use the Observer as a surveillance aircraft.
The classy twin engine is manufactured by Vulcanair, a name that presumably originated from Mount Vesuvius, because the aircraft manufacturer’s huge factory premises are located at Naples airport. This is where the legendary Partenavia P68, the apparent ancestor to the Observer, was produced in the seventies and eighties.
In keeping with the Flying Bulls’ nature, they did not have their new aircraft delivered, but collected it on location for the first flight home. The pilots and their passengers can look forward to many wonderful views, but the "Observer" will attract lots of admiring glances in Hangar-7 too.