In 2010, I traveled to Haiti to deliver medical supplies in the aftermath of the powerful earthquake that leveled much of the area in and around impoverished Port-au-Prince. It was no surprise that the crew of a Quest Kodiak beat me there. After all, the Kodiak was created to serve as a primary workhorse for missionary and humanitarian organizations in the harshest environments they fly. It’s been doing that job, and many others, exceptionally well in the more than six years since Quest handed over the keys to the first customer airplane.
Even though I’d been hearing and reading quite a lot about the Kodiak since it arrived on the scene as a certified airplane, it still offered up a few surprises when I finally got the chance to fly it a couple of months ago. Among the eye-openers was the rotation speed I was quoted: 50 knots. In this hulk of an airplane, I asked? Lynn Thomas, Quest Aircraft’s sales director, assured me the number was correct. I knew the Kodiak had a penchant for getting in and out of some impressively tight places, and even though we were quite a bit lighter than the Kodiak’s max allowable gross weight of 7,255 pounds, I was still a little skeptical about a VR that matched that of a stock Cessna 172.
For the complete story by Stephen Pope of Flying Magazine, click here.