AERO 2023

Shark adds a performance Edge with new Turbo 600

Shark Turbo 600
New Shark Turbo from Shark Aero is powered by an Edge Performance Rotax conversion

Shark Aero has more performance than ever before with its latest aircraft, the Turbo Shark 600.

The Shark has gone from strength to strength since it was unveiled here at AERO Friedrichshafen in 2007. This low-wing, aerodynamically clean ultralight with its distinctive shark-like tail fin was already one of the fastest ultralights in the world, capable of over 160kt and with a range of 2,700km.

Now it’s stepping up a gear with the Turbo Shark 600, a new turbo-charged model that runs on a 126hp Edge Performance 914Ti engine. According to Shark, this model is designed for those who want to fly long distances regularly.

Shark Turbo 600

Rotax-based turbocharged Edge engine is a compact fit inside the Shark’s cowling

It offers shorter take-off performance, a better climb rate and a better cruise speed at high altitudes. The Edge engine keeps its power up to 14,000ft, at which altitude they believe the aircraft is capable of a true airspeed (TAS) of 215kt. That said, to maintain the current stress and lateral limits, engine power will be limited, achieving a still-impressive 189kt TAS.

It’s an interesting engine, starting life as an 80hp factory-new Rotax 912UL, and then being modified with a fuel injection and induction system, high-flow capacity oil pump, custom two-in-one stainless steel exhaust system and an intercooler for maximum performance.

Everything on the engine has been customised, as the standard Rotax 914 simply wouldn’t have fitted in the confines of Shark’s sleek airframe. It promises impressive performance gains which, coupled with a new avionics option with the Garmin G3X and G5, suggests a bright future for Shark.

Shark virtual reality

Shark’s VR demonstrator where you ‘become’ round-the-world pilot Zara Rutherford

Fly with Zara on Virtual Reality

The Shark made the headlines last year thanks to a successful world record attempt by the young Belgian-British aviator Zara Rutherford, who became the youngest female pilot to fly solo around the world at the tender age of 19. On the Shark stand at AERO 2023, the Slovak company is making clever use of virtual reality to give visitors a flavour of Zara’s epic flight, and of Shark in general.

I climbed into a mock-up of the Shark cockpit and pulled on the virtual reality goggles to experience it for myself. I found myself at the end of a runway in a mountainous area of eastern Europe. Turning my head from side to side, I could see two other Sharks: we were off on a formation flight!

Shark VR

Rachel as Zara wearing the Shark VR goggles

As soon as the take-off roll began, the realistic graphics tricked my brain into believing that I was really moving – so even though the real-life side-stick control I had my hand on wasn’t actually controlling anything, it really did feel like it – especially in the breathtaking moment when ‘my’ aircraft broke away from the formation.

This virtual reality Zara-eye view is a great way of drawing you in to the world of Shark flying. The Turbo version will be available in Germany by the end of this year, at a cost of €310,000 (including 19% tax) . This is an aircraft the UK could also see thanks to new UK agent, TLAC of Little Snoring, Norfolk. After my little VR adventure, I can’t wait to get my hands on the real thing…


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