By Russ Niles, Editor-in-Chief
Epic Aircraft, the Bend, Ore., manufacturer of speedy turboprop kit aircraft called the LT, has been sold to a Russian company. In a news release, Epic describes its new owner, Engineering LLC, as "Russia's premier maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) provider." The Russian company intends to certify the LT but will keep making the kits, too. CEO Doug King, who essentially led a group of builders with partly completed airplanes in the acquisition of the kit side of Epic when the original company went under three years ago, will stay in his position. "It's exciting to be a part of Epic Aircraft's next chapter. Working together with Engineering LLC, Epic will
be able to extend our great commitment and dedication to the aircraft manufacturing industry including our customers, employees, vendors and all other stakeholders. This will be a truly significant move for the future of both companies," King said.
A certified version of the LT would be look-alike competition for Kestrel Aircraft's proposed offering. The LT was based on a design developed by Kestrel's English ancestor and is being taken to fruition by Cirrus co-founder Alan Klapmeier. Meanwhile, it appears that King and his fellow builders accomplished their goals in taking over the company. King says his airplane is finished and will be at Sun 'n Fun. The Epic story was one of the more unusual in the string of company failures that hit the industry, and AVweb's earlier coverage plotted the chronology.