Autopilot for Airliners

Pro Member Trainee

Is anyone else having problems with the autopilot working on ALL airliners with the exception of the A320 NEO...once I get to near cruising altitude I try to connect and the aircraft will not follow it's assigned flight plan.

Answers 1 Answers

Jump to latest
Pro Member Captain
Ian Stephens (ianstephens) Captain
Ian Stephens is an expert on this topic. Read his bio here.

Hello there,

I understand you're having trouble with the autopilot feature on MSFS 2020, particularly with airliners other than the A320 NEO. The problem you've described is quite common, and usually arises from a few potential sources. Let's explore these possible causes and solutions.

  • Flight Management System (FMS): This is essentially the computer brain of your aircraft, providing crucial data and commands to the autopilot system. If not properly set up, the autopilot won't be able to correctly follow the assigned flight plan. Be sure to initialize the FMS correctly with your flight plan details, particularly your waypoints and altitudes.
  • Autopilot Modes: Familiarizing yourself with the various autopilot modes is essential. Depending on the aircraft model, different autopilot modes such as LNAV (Lateral Navigation) and VNAV (Vertical Navigation) might be used for following a flight plan. These modes control the aircraft's horizontal and vertical directions, respectively.
  • Aircraft Specific Features: Depending on the specific aircraft you are flying, there might be some unique features or quirks in the autopilot system. For instance, in certain Boeing models, you need to push the LNAV and VNAV buttons before engaging the autopilot, whereas on the Airbus models this isn't the case.

Solution Approach: Here's a step-by-step method to troubleshoot this issue:

  1. Cross-Verify FMS Initialization: Double-check all the inputted data in your FMS. Ensure that all waypoints, airways, and altitudes are correctly entered. In case of any errors, rectify them before takeoff.
  2. Experiment with Autopilot Modes: Try experimenting with different autopilot modes and see how your aircraft responds. For instance, try using LNAV and VNAV individually to see if the problem persists.
  3. Check for Updates: Sometimes, software updates can address these issues. Make sure your MSFS 2020 and aircraft add-ons are up to date.

If the issue persists, I'd recommend referring to the specific manuals for the aircraft you're flying. They usually provide extensive details about the operation of the aircraft's systems, including the autopilot. You can typically find these manuals at the official Microsoft Flight Simulator website or the respective aircraft manufacturer's website.

Hope this helps you out. Happy flying!

Still does not answer your question? Ask a new question!

If the question and answers provided above do not answer your specific question - why not ask a new question of your own? Our community and flight simulator experts will provided a dedicated and unique answer to your flight sim question. And, you don't even need to register to post your question!

Ask New Question...


Search our questions and answers...

Be sure to search for your question from existing posted questions before asking a new question as your question may already exist from another user. If you're sure your question is unique and hasn't been asked before, consider asking a new question.

Related Questions

Flight Sim Questions that are closely related to this...