“Pipistrel Alpha Electro: The trainer of the future?” is an AOPA article about the electric airplane that is closest to realistic availability and practical use.
Some interesting facts about this aircraft…
The Siemens (German-made) 80 hp motor, at $10,000, costs about as much to overhaul as a light aircraft alternator ($400). The motor will last for 6,000 hours with two overhauls in the middle. With 80 horsepower this machine will have the same power as the original Rotax-powered Diamond Katana, a thoroughly awesome trainer with an engine that U.S. operators found tough to maintain.
Perhaps the age of hard-of-hearing flight instructors will be coming to an end: “The aircraft is quiet. There is some noise, but it’s mostly from the propeller, and headset-free conversation is no problem, even at takeoff power.”
The current batteries can be recharged in just 45 minutes, meaning that a flight school scheduling students into 2-hour blocks might just barely be able to substitute this plane for current trainers.