GA Aircraft

B-Model Sonex Excites, Reminds Me of Heroes

"Never fly the 'A' model of anything."

If you're been involved with aviation for very long, you're probably familiar with these famous words attributed to Ed Thompson. While we like to joke about how wise they are, the truth is that most of us are probably so desperate to get into the air that we'll fly whatever we can get our hands on.

Cobalt in Detail - David Loury the Patient Dreamer

I recently wrote an article about the announcement of the Cobalt Co50 Valkyrie. It's a gorgeous airplane that promises to top the piston single market with a speed of 260 knots...and it seemed to appear out of nowhere as a working prototype.

Why the SkiGull is Important

Legendary aircraft designer Burt Rutan retired from his company, Scaled Composites. What did he decide to do next? Design and build another airplane of course!

Second PC-24 Flies

Before we get started, I have to admit that I'm a big fan of Pilatus aircraft. Though it may appear otherwise, I, sadly, won't get paid a dime to write any of this.

That said, I'm very happy to report that the second PC-24 prototype just completed its first flight. What, you haven't heard about the PC-24? I can't fault you - Pilatus hasn't been as vocal about it as they could. I don't think they need to though. The PC-24 starts with the capabilities and credibility that Pilatus built with the PC-12 and takes them to the next step in a logical progression. This isn't just an incremental improvement like next year's iPhone though. The PC-24 is a revolution in both the idea of utility business aviation and small jet capability.

Awesome Out of Nowhere: Cobalt CO50 Valkyrie

A few days ago I came across an article announcing an awesome new aircraft that I expect will be selling like hotcakes in the very near future. Strangely, I found out about it in an article on Wired, and I'd never heard any mention of this plane before.

The Cobalt CO50 Valkyrie had me drooling the moment I saw it.

More Big Turboprop News

About a week after Diamond announced their new 7-place turboprop, a couple other aircraft companies made splashes in the media with aircraft in or near the DA50-JP7s class.

Piper announced three new models, grouped together as the "M-Class." There aren't a lot of specifics yet, but the M350, M500 and M600 appear to be an update and rebranding of Piper's current 6-place cabin class aircraft, the Matrix, Mirage and Meridian. Using just basic info from their website, the only difference between the Meridian and M500 or the Mirage and M350 are about $50,000 in each case.

Diamond Turboprop: Balancing Innovation and Risk

I'm pretty impressed overall with Diamond Aircraft. They've very quietly been making innovative, high-quality aircraft for years. They have a firm foothold in the training market with their economical DA20, and the DA40 is well-regarded in the 4-place piston market by those who fly it. Their DA42 Twin Star is probably the first meaningful piston twin developed in decades. With its diesel motors, FADEC and advanced aerodynamic design it's a really cool airplane.

Flight Report: Cessna 400 Corvalis TT

On a warm Florida summer morning a couple weeks ago I stepped into AMS Aviation at my current home station of 2R4 in Milton and announced that I was there to get a ride in a Cessna 400 Corvalis TT. I think even the building itself went green with envy and those present helped me wait so that they could get a look at the plane when it arrived. I found out very quickly that they were right to be jealous!

Why was I getting a demo...was I thinking of buying? I wish, but I sure can't afford it. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that I write for AviationBull.com. I don't know. Cessna invited me. It wasn't long before Matt Tutton of Air Orlando touched down in N1198Z, a gorgeous white and blue airplane that appeared to have so little drag I was worried it wouldn't be able to stop on Milton's little runway.

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