Pictured above: Europa XS Tricycle Undercarriage
Pictured above: Europa Monowheel XS. Landing gear down
Pictured above: Europa XS Monowheel Landing gear up
The Europa is a two-seat composite monoplane, typically cruising in the range of 120 to 140kts. It has a range and carrying capacity that make it ideally suited to touring, and has acquired the reputation of being an extremely enjoyable aircraft to fly. Compared to the standard certified training types in use around the world, it is faster, quicker in the climb, and far more economical to run. It is designed to be quickly de-rigged and stored on its trailer in a garage – feature that many builders take full advantage of.
The Europa is only available as a kit from Europa Aircraft (2004) Ltd, although there are often excellent finished examples on the second-hand market, where they command good resale values The Europa is currently available with two different undercarriage configurations (monowheel and tri-gear), and with two different wings (standard and motorglider).
The original Europa – now usually referred to as the Europa Classic – had wet lay-up wings fabricated by the builder using cloth and resin over foam cores. It also had a monowheel undercarriage configuration, with the tailwheel under the fuselage rather than trailing aft of the rudder. The tri-gear undercarriage was then developed for those pilots who preferred this configuration.
The current version of the kit is the Europa XS, and is available with either monowheel or tri-gear undercarriages. The factory also supplies the motorglider wings. They can be used as an alternative to the standard wings, or interchangeably – the fuselage and empennage (tail) are the same for both wings.
Due to the large number of kits sold and enthusiastic builders many dozens of modifications and additions have been developed. These include three taildragger versions. The Club has an extensive Photo gallery of individual aircraft and many builders have recorded their personal experiences of building.