It’s the Autopilot Solution GA Aircraft Owners Have Been Waiting For
- Cost-effective, precise and smooth in-flight characteristics, built-in self-monitoring capabilities and lower cost of ownership when compared to older autopilot systems
- Designed for existing light single-engine piston, fixed-wing aircraft, initially available for select Cessna, Beechcraft and Piper models with more to follow
- Leverages certificated G5 electronic flight instrument1, G500 or G500 TXi2 for input and display of altitude preselect, heading, vertical speed, airspeed target and flight director cues
- Robust feature set, including safety features such as underspeed and overspeed protection, a dedicated return-to-level (LVL) mode button, Garmin ESP™ (Electronic Stability and Protection), Flight Director (FD), coupled approaches and missed approaches when paired with a compatible navigator and much more
- Offers 2-axis (pitch and roll) capabilities with optional pitch-trim; yaw damper optionally available on select aircraft
The revolutionary GFC 500 autopilot brings unprecedented levels of capability, reliability and affordability to light single-engine, fixed-wing general aviation aircraft. GFC 500 leverages our advanced attitude-based flight control technology developed for the popular GFC 700 autopilot, which drives our most advanced glass flight deck systems
To help prevent incidents caused by loss of control, the FAA and other regulators encourage the use of key technologies, such as angle-of-attack indicators and autopilots, to help increase situational awareness, reduce pilot workload and enhance safety of flight. GFC 500 is the right product — at the right price — for certified light GA aircraft. Boasting a superior feature set, GFC 500 incorporates a number of safety-enhancing technologies, including Garmin ESP, underspeed and overspeed protection, automatic LVL mode, vertical navigation (VNAV) mode³, flight director (FD) command cues and more.
GFC™ 500 Digital Autopilot
Drawing on top-end Garmin flight control technology from our GFC 700, GFC 500 provides crisp, precise response and optimum performance over the entire airspeed envelope of your aircrcaft. Rather than depending on failure-prone mechanical gyros, the GFC 500 system is digitally controlled, using solid-state attitude and air data sensor reference — giving you ultra-smooth roundouts, intercepts and more while also enhancing the reliability of the system. Incorporating our crisp, easy-to-read 3.5” G5 electronic flight instrument¹, a mode controller and “smart” servos, the autopilot’s architecture supports full pitch-and-roll axis control capabilities with optional pitch trim for automatic and manual electric trim. Additionally, yaw damper capability is optionally available for select aircraft models.
With the optional GAD™ 29 nav data adapter, GFC 500 will interface with the GTN™ 650 and GTN 750 and legacy GNS™ 430 and GNS 530 (WAAS and non-WAAS) series navigators to fly a wide range of precision, nonprecision and GPS-guided approaches as well as holds, procedure turns, missed approaches and more. GFC 500 also includes built-in GPS roll steering capability, which allows smoother navigation tracking and eliminates the need for external roll steering converters. Flight director cues are displayed as command bars on the G5 electronic flight instrument as well as optionally on a G500 or G500 TXi flight display². The command bars are always in view when the autopilot is doing the flying — and may also be used for visual guidance when you’re hand-flying the aircraft. With support for a remotely installed Takeoff/Go-around (TOGA) button, the flight director can be cued to automatically indicate and capture the correct pitch attitude required to fly a missed approach and then follow the missed approach procedure loaded in your compatible GPS navigator. Up to 2 G5 electronic flight instruments can be interfaced with the GFC 500 autopilot in your aircraft, providing full reversionary display capability.