MTOW Increase to 760kg

Last updated 19 November 2021

On 2 December 2021 CASA will implement changes to regulations which affect RAAus pilots and aircraft owners. These include new Civil Aviation Safety Regulations (CASR) Part 91 and Part 103 and confirmation that an increase in MTOW to 760 kg is now available to sport organisations. However, RAAus is currently collaborating with CASA on the required changes to our manuals and processes which will allow the registration and operation of RAAus aircraft at 760 kg MTOW.

At the time of writing and on 2 December 2021, no changes to current RAAus registration and aircraft operations will have therefore occurred. 

When will the MTOW increase take place?

The MTOW increase, when approved for RAAus aircraft by CASA, will put more choice and more freedom into the hands of current RAAus members. The shift to a higher allowable MTOW will effectively open up RPC holders to a whole new range of two-seater Light Aircraft that will fall under the new limit. Much-loved aircraft such as the Cessna 152, Piper Tomahawk and Victa Airtourer, may be available to RAAus pilots. For those seeking a slightly larger aircraft or are looking to undertake longer flights that require more fuel, the change will also be welcome news. 

Further information will be provided as to when the MTOW increase will come into effect for RAAus members.

The FAQs below provide answers to the questions as RAAus understands them at this point in time. Once we have confirmation of the additional detail and approval from CASA, the answers to these FAQs will undoubtedly change. Members are encouraged to keep reviewing this page and reading enews from RAAus for the latest information. 

What has been proposed? 

The RAAus weight increase proposal delivered to CASA outlined clear separation between the operation of higher weight aircraft and the current operational requirements. The current Group A Recreational Pilot Certificate (RPC) for (fixed wing, 3 axis, single engine) will remain defined as aircraft with a MTOW up to 600KG (650Kg for water based aircraft) AND a stall speed of no more than 45 kts. The weight increase proposal provided by RAAus introduced a Group G RPC for fixed wing, 3 axis, single engine aircraft with an MTOW between 601 and 760 kg, regardless of stall speed. 

What progress has been made to date? 

CASA produced the discussion paper DP 1912SS Maximum take-off weight limit for aeroplanes managed by self-administering aviation organisations (ASAO) and released it in August 2019 for industry to comment on. On the 02 December 2021 CAO 95.55 will be updated to permit the registration and operation of aircraft under RAAus up to 760Kg. The detailed requirements are yet to be finalised and as more details are known this page will be updated. 

What was the overall result from the industry response to the discussion paper? 

The summary report revealed that 83% of respondents supported an MTOW increase up to 760Kg. This result highlights the evolution of recreational aviation and the need for regulations to reflect the changing landscape. The discussion paper however outlined a stall speed requirement remaining at 45 knots for aircraft operating up to 760Kg. RAAus responded to this point in the discussion paper and continues to have positive discussions with CASA. CASA is currently reviewing their position on this requirement and will consult with industry shortly.

General MTOW FAQs

  • Will the weight increase affect my current operation?

    No – The introduction of Group G aircraft will in no way affect the current operations of RAAus members, flying schools and maintainers. However, anyone who may want to operate a Group G aircraft in the RAAus system will have to comply with the Group G Pilot Certificate, Rating and Approval requirements as relevantRAAus continues to work collaboratively with CASA to define the Group G operational requirements.

  • What are some benefits of a weight increase?

    A weight increase for RAAus will have positive impacts on the aviation industry such as improved aircraft utilisation and overall growth in aviation participation throughout Australia. Furthermore, some current RAAus registered aircraft will no longer have their MTOW artificially restricted therefore enabling more fuel to be carried on cross country flights. 

  • When will Group G be implemented?

    CAO 95.55 will be updated to include the weight increase to 760Kg MTOW on 02 December 2021. This will provide a legislative pathway for RAAus to present CASA with updated Flight Operations and Technical manuals which will include the Group G procedures and processesRAAus anticipates accepting aircraft for registration and issuing RAAus Pilot Certificates, Ratings and Approvals during the first half of 2022. As more details are known this FAQ page will be updated.

Aircraft FAQs

Flight Operations FAQs

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