The much maligned Max 8 and the Buckeye Navy trainer. What could they have in common?
Both would want static stability (trimmable speed stable approach) for landings. Both would want maximum fuel efficiency for maximum range.
Engine up thrust would require less tail down trim for balancing forward CG. Ideally, this could be optimized for cruise, so, at cruise airspeed and power, no tail down force is required, just like a plane with the CG back. Much less drag.
The advantage is, once you drop out of cruise (less power), you now have a more staticly stable (read can be trimmed for one speed), making approaches to landing much easier. Helpful for carriers and busy airports alike.
Is this such a bad design after all?