Developed in Germany, the Junkers F13 aircraft was the first all-metal passenger plane, able to fit six people and known for its low-wing cantilever design. The single-engine Junker was pretty advanced for its time and was frequently used by the affluent between the time of its inaugural flight in June 1919 and when production ceased in the late 1930s. It actually did so well during its run that, according to German luggage brand Rimowa, in 1925, “the F13 had a share of around 40 percent in the international traffic route network.” Why would a baggage company be weighing in on aircraft? Well, that’s because they have brought the Junkers F13 back, and you can own one for a couple million bucks.
If it seems odd that Rimowa would be putting so much effort into bringing this aircraft back—9,000 labor hours across its 2,600 parts, 35,000 rivets and 132 pounds of paint, to be exact—it actually makes sense. CEO Dieter Morszeck has a soft spot for aviation, since has been a pilot for 33 years and his father was so inspired by the company’s discovery of duralumin that he actually used the same material for his luggage line. Seems like fate to us.
Priced at $2.2 million each, the revived Junkers are prettier than ever and while they are essentially the same design, they have been updated to meet modern day safety standards—obviously. “These modifications mainly affect the radial engine, the braked landing gear and an improved tail unit,” says Rimowa. Aside from the necessary improvements, the aesthetic is still very reminiscent of the 1920s, so much so that if Jay Gatsby walked off the page, he would definitely approve.
The F13 isn’t quite ready yet, but its first flight is planned for March 2016 and if all goes to plan, it will start delivery in May. If interested in getting your own piece of updated aeronautical history, you can pre-order the aircraft now and get sent information on its progress.