get your pilot license

Garmin GFC 500 Autopilot Receives FAA STC for Beechcraft A35 and B35 Aircraft

GFC 500 GMC 507

Garmin announced on February 13 that it had obtained FAA Supplemental Type Certification (STC) for the GFC 500 digital autopilot in Beechcraft A35 and B35 aircraft. This cutting-edge autopilot, designed for light piston aircraft, offers superior in-flight characteristics, self-monitoring capabilities, and reduced maintenance requirements compared to older-generation systems.

The fully equipped GFC 500 autopilot offers a straightforward, lightweight, and cost-effective upgrade path for a wide range of existing GA aircraft. With solid-state attitude and robust self-monitoring capabilities, the GFC 500 provides superior autopilot performance, enhanced reliability, and safety tools similar to those found in the popular GFC 700 autopilot.

Featuring a user-friendly autopilot mode controller with large, dedicated keys and knobs, as well as a control wheel for easy adjustments to aircraft pitch, airspeed, and vertical speed, the GFC 500 stands out with its Level Mode. This feature returns the aircraft to straight-and-level flight with the push of a dedicated button. Additionally, GFC 500-equipped aircraft may benefit from Garmin Smart Glide, an innovative safety tool automating tasks to reduce pilot workload in the event of engine power loss.

In addition to traditional autopilot features such as altitude hold, vertical speed, and heading modes, the GFC 500 includes advanced capabilities like altitude preselect, VNAV2, underspeed and overspeed protection, allowing pilots to execute various coupled instrument approaches, including LPV, GPS, ILS, VOR, and missed approaches when paired with a compatible Garmin GPS navigator.


As a standard feature, the GFC 500 comes with Garmin Electronic Stability and Protection (ESP), functioning independently of the autopilot. ESP assists the pilot in maintaining a stable flight condition by subtly nudging the aircraft to avoid inadvertent flight attitudes or bank angles while hand-flying.

The GFC 500 autopilot seamlessly integrates with Garmin’s GI 275 or G5 electronic flight instruments. It offers versatility by combining with either a standby GI 275 or G5 electronic flight instrument interfaced to a G500 TXi flight display or a G3X Touch flight display.

Garmin continues to expand its aircraft compatibility list for the GFC 500 autopilot.

Add a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

get your pilot license
Optimized by Optimole