|The fully equipped MD3 Rider features steam gauges and Garmin electronics. The electric-flap lever (below) is easily reached and user-friendly. |
Overall, everything about the Rider feels in balance. Pitch, yaw and roll forces seem equivalent and harmonious. The rudder helps coordinate things, but it isn’t a major factor in comfy flying. Overall, the airplane reminds me of a light touring motorcycle: comfortable on the long haul, but responsive enough to handle the mountain twisties.
Fuel management is a breeze—turn on one wing tank, turn off the other with the rotating toggle levers on the panel in front of you. Cabin visibility is expansive thanks to the wrap-over-top windscreen and low side rails on each door, which give you a steep down viewing angle. There’s also plenty of shoulder room, with 46 inches from door to door—no claustrophobia from this flivver.
Landings are also a snap. Gliding down on short final at 50 knots, my host has me feed in a little power to flatten the glide when my descent rate gets a bit high. Plop, on she settles without histrionics—in the low 30s! After some short-field takeoffs (hold with brakes, flaps at 15 degrees, full power, release—and off we fly in a very short distance), we land on grass. The Rider handles all challenges with equanimity.
Looking back, what I remember most is the ease and pleasure of flying the MD3 Rider. Can’t wait to hop it again, and what higher praise can you give an airplane than that?A Little Tech Music, Maestro
The Rider’s construction features a fuselage cockpit cage of chrome-moly steel in a triangulated design for max crash protection. Tubes are laser cut and TIG welded into a framework made up of 150 triangles. The aluminum wing and fuselage skins are primary-glued and pop-riveted. The contoured carbon-composite engine cowl and rear canopy fairing lend a smooth, sleek aesthetic that’s enhanced by rounded instead of squared-off fuselage sides—and designer Dostàl’s trademark shark-fin tail.
A 13-gallon fuel tank is built into each of the wings. The tricycle gear sports sturdy composite-construction main legs. Aircraft-grade AN hardware, not a standard on all LSA, is used throughout.
The MD3 Rider comes fully equipped with steam gauges and Garmin electronics (SL40 radio, GTX-327 digital transponder with Mode C and color 296 GPS, also intercom, electric flaps, wheel pants and other features) for $115,995.
Basic LSA VFR models without radios go for $93,995 for the 80 hp version, $99,995 for the 100 hp model. A BRS all-airplane parachute system and folding wings are offered as options. SPECS: Flyitalia MD3 Rider
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