Farnborough Aircraft’s commercial director, Richard Blain, believes that size certainly has its advantages when it comes to his company’s F-1 Kestrel turboprop single. That the airplane is larger than that found on most so-called very light jets, combined with the 352-knot cruise speed at 28,000 ft and access to 500-meter grass strips, places the Kestrel in a category apart from the new breed of private airplanes, Blain said.
The prototype Kestrel made its Middle East debut at the Dubai MEBA show in October, when the company gave demonstrations to financing partners before returning the airplane to Britain. The demonstrations drew praise for the comfort of the four-seat interior with its cabin-accessible baggage compartment and the facility of a private lavatory.
Now work on the newer version, with a slightly larger cabin and increased maximum takeoff weight, has begun and the company remains on schedule for certification and first deliveries in 2009. More information on the Kestrel is available on the Farnborough Aerospace Consortium stand in the West Hall.