The all electric Cri-Cri seems like a fun way to fly so long as your destination can be reached within 30 minutes at its cruise speed of 110 km/hr. The experimental plane, jointly developed by EADS Innovation Works, Aero Composites Saintonge and the Green Cri-Cri Association in France, can also do 15 minutes of autonomous aerobatics at speeds reaching up to 250 km/hr, and has a climb rate of approximately 5.3 m/sec.
The Cri-Cri recently made its official maiden flight at Le Bourget airport near Paris. It is billed as the first-ever four-engined all-electric aerobatic plane. The flight lasted 7 minutes and reports are that all systems performed well.
“This aircraft flies very smoothly, much more quietly than a plane with conventional propulsion”, said Didier Esteyne, who piloted the plane. “But we are still at the beginning and have a lot to learn. We are allowed to start aerobatic maneuvers only after five hours of flight and 15 landings.”
The aerobatic plane incorporates lightweight composite structures that reduce the weight of the airframe and compensate for the additional weight of the batteries, four brushless electric motors with counter-rotating propellers, and high energy-density Lithium batteries.
No word yet about the date of the next flight.
More info and a video of the first flight: http://www.eads.com/eads/int/en/news/press.255618dd-959b-4f4a-865b-ad884f380318.70472f39-dd6f-4428-a792-91d82cb9791b.html