The RV-12 is a two-seater with side-by-side seating, the standard-issue military-inspired bubble canopy, sticks for aircraft control and a nosewheel, all things Van’s knows how to do and do well. It’s roomy for an LSA and the visibility is terrific. It’s about as fast as an LSA can legally be, just under the 120 knot speed limit, it lands super-slow, with its 40 knot stall speed, and it loves flying low and slow over pretty terrain, though we’d love it if Van’s added a chute as an option. Like many LSA, the RV-12 requires real stick-and-rudder skills to keep the ball centered, and landing and takeoff when windy can be a challenge. That all said, the RV-12 offers a fun flying experience for a reasonable cost, and with the removable wings, you won’t even need to pay hangar rent.
Niche: Low-wing sport
Base Price: $115,000
Competitors: Rans S-19 Venterra
Learn more at Van’s Aircraft.