The Phenom 100 is Embraer's four and a half million dollar entry in
the personal jet market. The idea of the personal jet category is an
aircraft which operates at a much lower cost than a regular class
jet and seats 4-8 people, has a maximum take-off weight of under
10,000 pounds and is designed to be flown by a single pilot.
When I fueled the real thing, it amazed me how small it really is,
about the same size as a Piper Malibu, the Phenom can take you and 4
friends to any runway over 3,200 feet. That is an amazing
achievement for a turbojet powered aircraft, on par with a King Air
Downloading and Installing
The Wilco Publications Phenom 100 is an easy download from the
website, download the executable, enter your serial number and away
What is in the package?
When installed in Flight Simulator X, the Phenom comes up under
Embraer and offers 3 liveries, house, 100FF, and a nice orange and
blue scheme. One thing sorely missing from this offering is a paint
kit, there are numerous operators around the world which fly the
aircraft as an air taxi and also many private liveries.
As far as documentation is concerned, there is a folder in the main
FSX folder that has an intro flight document, performance charts and
a configurator. No pilots handbook/POH to be found, but they do list
all features of the panel and aircraft. I kept looking for more, but
I needed to keep in mind this is considered a "LE" simulation.
One thing Wilco Publications is known for is exterior modeling and
high quality texturing. They do not disappoint with this model. If
you are used to flying the freeware CamSim Phenom, you are in for a
treat, this thing is a feast for the eyes. All the moving parts of
the airplane are there as well as engine plugs, nose cargo doors and
pitot/other things covers. As this is an FSX native model, there is
bump and spec modeling and it is done very, very well.
At this point, my passengers showed up so I had to open the door and
let them in. The cabin interior is just as the exterior, done very
well by a veteran company in the FS industry. The panel and the
cockpit are done to an equally high standard.
Wilco says "Sometimes you just want to fly, or you are new to flight
simulation, and don't wish spend 30 minutes pre-flighting an
aircraft. Maybe today you don't want to spend much effort to create
a flight plan and programming a flight management computer.
FeelThere LE aircraft are designed to be detailed enough to immerse
you in the simulation experience and quickly get into the air from
power-up to takeoff.
Many systems are modeled, just not every system. You will find the
level of detailed is greater than any flight simulator default
aircraft. The systems that are modeled behave correctly; or are only
slightly simplified. However, they go on by saying, "About all
systems are simulated : electrical, pneumatic, hydraulic,
pressurization system, bleed air, air conditioning, FADEC with ATR
function." If they can simulate 90% of the systems why not go on and
simulate the other 10%?
All of the navigation systems are very simplified, there is a
keyboard modeled for the G1000 yet it is not used, the G1000 uses
FSX's standard GPS. The autopilot is plagued with Wilco's
infatuation with clicking and moving the mouse side to side to
change values. This absolutely kills the user experience when you
have to keep clicking and sliding the mouse to the right 6 or 7
times to get the altimeter up into the flight levels. I open the 2D
panel every time I need to change something as it supports the
scroll wheel on my mouse.
The sounds are provided by Turbine Sound Studios and they sound like
the real thing 100%, the igniters are very distinguishable until you
put the fuel to it and then the subsequent whoosh is right on. Also,
all annunciator and warning sounds are true to life. TSS hit it out
of the park with this sound set.
Flying this thing
A little different. I made the mistake of taking off for the first
time at KASE (an airport with a 7,000+ ft. density altitude) in the
summer and barely got it off the end. I hated it for about a month,
came back to it at a different airport and now I cannot put it down
despite its lack of decent panel. At first it had a nasty habit of
peeling off to the left as soon as I added full power, but that
fixed itself, still don't know what caused it. Rotate at 90 kts. and
it climbs like a homesick angel after you clean it up and it cruises
at a respectable 300-320 kias. Super docile, she lands around 95-105
kts. depending on weight.
The personal jet is interesting, it has all the workload of a
turbine aircraft, yet has half the crew. To this end, Embraer
simplified a few of the procedures such as engine start, kick on the
master, flip on a few lights, turn a knob and you have engine start.
In this rendition, Wilco automatically hooks up ground power about
20 seconds after you kill the engine, this is because the Phenom has
So... is it a full simulation or is it a "LE" aircraft? Depends on
which system you try to use. It seems that Wilco just got sick of
developing it and decided to push it to market. If the developer
would have put in 10% more effort, this Embraer would have been 100%
better. At $42 and change, if I didn't like business aviation so
much, I am afraid I would have to pass on this one.
• External model:
• Internal model:
• Flight characteristics/Systems:
• Flight dynamics:
• Value for money:
Mutley's Hangar score of