After more than 10 years in production, this remarkable and too often overlooked single has become the star it was always meant to be.
I sometimes get calls out of the blue asking me for my advice about airplane buying decisions. Sometimes the caller isn’t so much seeking guidance as much as getting confirmation that the decision they’ve already made is the right one: “Yeah, a Cessna 180 sounds like a great airplane for you,” I’ll often concur. When more »
A globe-girdling four-place from South Africa lands in the United States.
You know a designer has confidence in a new experimental aircraft when his first journey following the required home field fly-off is a circumnavigation of the earth. Then, again, the fact that the designer and the airplane are both products of aviation-besotted South Africa may provide a more apt explanation for such a mad adventure. more »
Is the oldest entry-level bizjet still best in class?
I’ll cut to the chase and start with the question that so many people in the market for a first light bizjet ask: Why would anyone not buy a HondaJet? Based on the response of the market, perhaps the biggest reason is the Cessna Citation M2, which while not quite as fast or as roomy more »
The Textron Aviation Cessna TTx we flew for this report was a loaded late 2016 model with the standard Garmin G2000 touch-controlled avionics suite, with the GFC700 digital autopilot, SiriusXM aviation weather and entertainment, envelope protection, terrain and traffic awareness utilities, flight into known icing TKS anti-ice system, and more. Price As Flown: $810,785 Base Price: more »
With delivery delays of at least a year for the ICON A5, we look at five alternatives—four Light Sport models and a cool Experimental—that just might float your flying boat
With the controversy, struggles and delays surrounding high-profile light-sport amphibian manufacturer ICON Aircraft, it’s instructive to point out that ICON isn’t the only game in town. There are several cool LSA seaplanes (among other options) on the market, or soon to be there, that are worth a closer look. Twelve years have passed since the more »
More PT6 power for improved takeoff, climb and cruise
There’s something cool, in a complex way, about sitting in a Cessna Caravan. It’s big and really high up, but feels in so many ways like a smaller airplane, which was the idea that Cessna had when it launched the model in the early 1980s. It’s a study in contradictions, from its oversized 182-style trim more »
How important is speed in an airplane and how much is it worth?
Go ahead, admit it. When you read all of those pilot reports, you skim them, looking for the cruise speed, then go back and read the rest. It’s a natural thing. We all love the idea of going fast. But how fast is fast? And is there such a thing as fast enough?
With more PT6 power and Garmin G3000 avionics, this new turboprop single goes far beyond the Meridian, literally and otherwise
It’s no secret that Piper recently earned FAA certification for its new M600, the next-generation PA-46 featuring an all-new wing and a more powerful Pratt & Whitney turboprop engine installation. I traveled down to Piper’s Vero Beach, Florida, headquarters, situated at busy KVRB on the beautiful Atlantic Coast, to learn more about the new model more »
The airplane we flew for this report was a factory-owned production model outfitted with a three-screen Garmin G3000 integrated flat-panel avionics suite with two GTC 570 touch-screen controllers. Equipment on the airplane included digital color weather radar, standby digital multifunction primary display, dual AHRS and air data computers, Jeppesen ChartView electronic instrument procedure charts, Garmin more »
When hunting for great value in a used plane, look for those that are under-appreciated
As much as those of us in the industry might wish it otherwise, flying is definitely one of the more expensive pastimes. Unfortunately, some pilots simply accept the realities of expensive flying costs without investigating the alternatives. Despite what you may think, there are ways to fly without busting the family budget. True, you won’t be aviating at 170 knots in a shiny new A36 Bonanza or Columbia 400, but you can stay in the air for considerably less than the national debt of Peru.
Efficiency, comfort, modern technology and so much more
In our current era of financial belt-tightening, efficiency counts for a lot. Vero Beach and Wichita are really getting it right with their newest batch of six-seat singles. Why? Because today’s six-seat singles offer a great combination of comfort, baggage capacity, speed, ease of flying and modern technology for people who need to cover a typical 250-mile stage length with four to six passengers and a lot of luggage.
The airplane we flew for this report was a 2000-model-year 208B Grand Caravan with a Blackhawk-installed Pratt & Whitney PT6A-140 turboprop engine with the original avionics and flight instruments, but with new engine instruments, standard with the Blackhawk engine exchange program. TYPICAL PRICE INCLUDING USED CARAVAN: $1.4-$1.8 million ENGINE: Pratt & Whitney PT6A-140 POWER RATING: more »
Why this innovative twin could make inroads in the single-engine market
I know that other aviation journalists have described the “sleek” and “sexy” look of the new DA62, but that’s not how it strikes me at all. With its long, angular and jutting lines, the DA62 looks to me more like a scorpion than a swallow, and if fate is kinder to Diamond Aircraft with this more »
The emerging 11-seat twin takes the Italian company to new heights (and speeds)
Tecnam, on Thursday at AirVenture, released new details about the first flight of its P2012 Traveler commuter aircraft, which happened last week out of the company’s home field in Capua, Italy. Experimental test pilot Lorenzo De Stefano was at the controls for the flight and reported that after a short test card of maneuvers with more »
AirVenture Oshkosh is a fitting spot to complete the biggest circle, where the Epic Aircraft team landed after its extraordinary 21-day journey.
Talk about your Epic homecomings. This week, a flight of six company- and owner-flown Epic LT aircraft landed at AirVenture Oshkosh to cap off a 21-day around-the-world trip. And, yes, everything about the Epic voyage was epic. Departing from Oshkosh on July 7, the tour took participants to 21 cities in nine countries, some 16,407 more »
A major upgrade to the light jet features new avionics and improved performance
Embraer, on Wednesday, launched a major upgrade to its Phenom 100 light jet, the 100 EV, which will be available in the first half of next year. The Embraer Phenom 100 EV is a better performer than the original Phenom 100, which was, at 390 knots, the fastest light jet not long ago, but which more »
Textron Aviation quietly released at AirVenture an update to its legendary Cessna 206 that, if anything, could make it even more legendary.
The secret to the Cessna T206 upgrade is a max weight increase of 189 pounds, which for any single-engine airplane would be good news, but for a utility plane that will regularly be operated at the edges of its envelope, it’s an even better deal. Textron earned the additional payload by proving what anyone who’s more »