July 18, 2007, Sandpoint, ID...Quest Aircraft Company announced today the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has granted type certification (TC) to its KODIAK aircraft. The receipt of TC A00007SE for the clean-sheet design airplane comes 32 months after the first flight of the KODIAK prototype and just 2½ months after first flight of the first fully conforming KODIAK.
“We are very grateful for the dedicated team of Quest employees and suppliers who worked together to accomplish this remarkable milestone,” said Paul Schaller, Quest Aircraft's President and CEO. “They have worked tirelessly to make the vision for the KODIAK a reality. We appreciate as well the hard work on the part of the FAA in helping us bring this project to fruition.”
The KODIAK's rugged aluminum construction combines superior STOL performance and high useful load. It offers proven turbine reliability with the Pratt & Whitney PT6 turbine engine, is capable of operating off floats without structural upgrades, and has the ability to land on unimproved surfaces. The KODIAK can take off in under 700 feet at full gross takeoff weight of 6,750 lbs with a useful load of 3,450 lbs and climb at over 1,700 feet per minute. The popular 3-panel Garmin G1000 integrated avionics suite is standard equipment on the KODIAK.
“As we moved through the certification process, the KODIAK met or exceeded every program milestone,” continued Schaller. “The KODIAK was designed with and for mission and humanitarian aviation organizations to perform under extremely rigorous conditions in the most remote regions of the world so the bar was set high. During both Quest's and the FAA's testing, we pushed the envelope and are pleased that the airplane successfully achieved the desired performance.” FAA type certification for the KODIAK includes single-pilot operation for both visual and instrument flight rules (VFR/IFR) and day and night operations.
The KODIAK prototype has logged over 1,000 hours of flight time and s/n 001, the first fully conforming production aircraft, has flown several hundred hours since entering the flight test program. As the KODIAK completed the final testing for certification, the production and assembly work has accelerated. Serial number 002, the first aircraft to be delivered to a customer, is currently on the production line and will be rolling off later this quarter.
Quest has seen strong market acceptance in key market segments, including personal use, Part 135 operations, government, and humanitarian organizations. Customer orders have exceeded expectations and the company has a 3-year backlog, which it is working to bring down as production ramps up.
Quest Aircraft Company, LLC is the manufacturer of the KODIAK, a 10-place single engine turboprop utility airplane, designed for STOL use and float capability. Headquartered in Sandpoint, Idaho, Quest was established in 2001 and currently employs more than 120 skilled personnel.
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