Wed, Jul 28, 2004
The folks at ANN move around fast -- that's how we get all those
stories long before anyone else. But... when it comes to getting
around fast, even we have to admit that we take a back seat to
those speed-demons from Bend, Oregon... the Lancair Certified
These guys are shaking up the aero-world big-time... I mean, do
you realize that that the fastest certified piston powered aircraft
in production actually has fixed gear?
Asked to name today's fastest certified piston-powered aircraft,
most pilots would probably think toward a twin with retractable
gear. They would be well off the mark.
With its certification in April, the Lancair Columbia 400 has
risen to the throne as world's fastest, complete with its single
engine and fixed gear. Two-hundred thirty-five (235) knots at
25,000 feet - that's nearly as fast as some turboprops.
Perhaps even more impressive than its speed are the Columbia
400's slow-flight manners. The 400's aerodynamic designs, including
wing and enhanced control surfaces, impart very docile handling
characteristics that one wouldn't normally associate with such a
fast aircraft. The Columbia 400 is certified to the FAA's more
stringent Utility category, and maintains the spin resistant
characteristics of the normally aspirated Columbias while adding a
spin recoverable rating to its certification. Never before has such
high performance been so easy to handle.
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