Features

Hummerchute’s New Heart

Like many, the news that Rotax were discontinuing production of their venerable 582 model hit Aerochute International hard. The exceptionally reliable engines came standard on all of the company’s models. More than 30,000 Rotax 582s had been sold between 1989 and 2001, helping to power a large swathe of ultralight and microlight
aviation around the world. After a thorough and detailed search, a successor was nominated and is set to bring the Hummerchute into a new era of performance. Introducing the Fiate MZ 202.

While the discontinuation of the Rotax 582 presented a challenge to Aerochute, it also presented an opportunity. This was the time to revolutionise the Hummerchute with a brand new powerplant, ushering in a new era of powered parachuting performance. A worldwide search for the perfect successor was sparked, looking for an engine that could not only match the 582’s performance characteristics, but exceed them.

Originally designed by Zanzottera Technologies of Italy, the MZ 202 is a twin-cylinder, in-line two-stroke engine. It is fan air-cooled, reed valve-controlled, boasts dual carburettors and Nikasil-coated cylinders for optimised performance. The MZ 202 has been in production since 2000 with a stellar reputation, and is now manufactured by Fiate Aviation, based in Anhui, China.

Aerochute undertook comprehensive testing and compliance measures to ensure the MZ 202 met requirements and would perform as desired on the Hummerchute. Rigorous evaluations of power output, fuel consumption, durability and overall performance were conducted. Upon completion of this process, Aerochute received official MARAP approval for installation of the Fiate MZ 202 on the Hummerchute. The successor became official, but does its performance stack up?

In terms of power the MZ 202 matches the Rotax almost identically, claiming 63hp against the 582’s 64hp number. Identical power? Yes. Identical performance? No. It’s the weight saving where the MZ 202 begins to really shine. Weighing in at 42kg, the MZ 202 is a whopping 7kg lighter than the 582, delivering a class-topping power-to-weight ratio that drastically improves performance.

Fuel efficiency was another important factor for Aerochute to consider, as the Hummerchute carries a strong reputation of being an economical, affordable aircraft to own and fly. Thankfully, the MZ 202 also delivers very similar fuel consumption and endurance numbers as its predecessor.

Another improvement the MZ 202 has on its predecessor is a fully electronic ignition system and electric starter motor. This will minimise maintenance and improve reliability, helping you get from the hangar to the skies faster. On the topic of maintenance, the MZ 202 has a recommended Time Between Overhauls (TBO) of 500 hours on condition. A 200-hour improvement on the Rotax, the MZ 202 ensures a more economical lifetime service and reduced maintenance costs.

All in all, the Fiate MZ 202 has proven to be not only a competent replacement for the Rotax 582, but a marked improvement on it. Offering better performance at a reduced lifetime cost, it is a promising step forward for the powered parachuting community and beyond.

In partnering with Fiate Aviation, Aerochute International is now also the exclusive distributor for the MZ 202 in Australia and India. The MZ 202’s capabilities go beyond powered parachutes, serving as a fantastic option for ultralights, gyrocopters, light experimental aircraft and even hovercrafts. For those builders and enthusiasts lamenting the end of the Rotax 582, it appears your prayers have been answered.

TypeTwo-Cylinder Two-Stroke (Inline)
Displacement626cm3 (38.2cu in)
Stroke69mm (2.72in)
Bore76mm (2.99in)
Max. Performance46.3kW (63HP) at 6250rpm
Max. Torque84Nm (61.9 ft. lbs) at 5200rpm
Carburation2 x Bing54 carburetors
Ignition SystemDual ignition, CDI programmable
Generator Power180W, 13.8V
CoolingFan cooling
Weight34kg (74.96lbs)
Starting DeviceElectric Starter
Running DirectionCounter-clockwise, view to output shaft
Fuel MixtureMixture 1:50, 2-stroke oil, fuel min, 95 RON