Mount Pleasant Magazine Sept-Oct 2018 | | MPB mp business crave new experiences and have access to great water, local airfields and good flying weather most of the year. As we continue to ramp up production and deliveries, you’ll see more and more ICON A5s in the area,” assured Curry. The ICON A5 was first flown in 2008, but ICON Aircraft co-founder and CEO Kirk Hawkins first conceived the A5 in 2004 when the Federal Aviation Administration’s light-sport regulations went into effect. At that time, the FAA made several changes to the regulation of consumer and recreational flying, including creating a light-sport aircraft (LSA) category for lightweight, easy-to-fly recreational aircraft and creating the sport pilot license (SPL) to complement this new category. The sport pilot license requires about half the training, time and cost of a traditional transportation-focused private pilot license and opens up flying to a whole segment of people who might have found flying too expensive, intimidating or inaccessible. The two-seat A5 has a combination of folding wings, amphibious capability and an optional custom trailer, which means the owner never has to set foot in an airport, although the plane is equally at home on land. The airplane is also loaded with comfort and safety features, including an ICON parachute system, technology that the company said has been documented to have saved more than 300 lives, some at altitudes as low as a few hundred feet. ICON recently announced the launch of ICON Fleet Access, a full-service sales and aircraft-management solution. “We announced a beta test of ICON Fleet Access, our fractional-ownership program, in July of this year,” said Curry. “This program is designed for people who want the fun of owning an aircraft without all of the hassle and at a substantially lower price point.” Curry explained that all elements of ICON center around one thing: creating an aircraft that delivers the ultimate “adventure-flying” experience. “No detail was overlooked. From creating a cockpit that is intuitive and easy to use to lowering the dash and making the canopy large for a spectacular view out the front window, to making the aircraft amphibious to permit operations from airports, remote airfields, lakes and waterways, to even making it ‘trailerable,’ so you can store it at home or take it with you on vacations – the ICON A5 is designed with one mission: to change the way people experience the world.” The A5 is for anyone who currently flies or has ever dreamed of flying. Curry agreed many of ICON’s early customers were already pilots, but now nearly half are nonpilots who are learning to fly and were drawn to the A5 for the adventure and opportunity. “The ICON A5 is designed to deliver a pure adventure- laden flying experience that allows people to explore and interact with the world in an exciting, visceral way like no other vehicle can,” Curry said. To learn more, visit