Kansas City Flight School Signs On For 30 Tecnam Trainer Aircraft

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Tecnam announced today (July 4) it has secured a deal with Kansas City-based Kilo Charlie Aviation for a total of 30 trainer aircraft. The flight school was founded in 2020 by Robert Renfro and Drew Konicek and has 96 students, according to Capua, Italy-based Tecnam.

Phase I includes the first 15 aircraft, including one P2006T twin-engine four-seat aircraft with fully retractable landing gear that has already been delivered. Two more P2006Ts are scheduled for delivery, one in the third quarter of this year and the next in the first quarter of 2024.

Kilo Charlie Aviation will also receive 12 P-Mentor piston singles as part of Phase I: four in Q4 2023, four in Q1 2024 and four in Q2 2024. The P-Mentor is a two-place, fully IFR-capable aircraft, compliant with the latest CS-23 EASA & FAA requirements. “Phase II of 30 aircraft will follow after the last of these first 15 have been delivered,” said Tecnam.

Renfro, who serves as Kilo Charlie Aviation’s chief operating officer, said, “We have been in a two-year process trying to find the right aircraft partner for our career flight training school. Once Tecnam presented the P-mentor we knew that all the work over the last two years had to be re-evaluated and compared to this aircraft. Safety and Technology are our two highest priorities here and after comparing everything it was without a doubt the best option for our school and students.”

Konicek, who serves as the flight school’s chief business officer, added, “When we met with Tecnam for the first time we were unfamiliar with their organization or aircraft. Immediately we knew that we had found a true partner.”

Mark Phelps
Mark Phelps is a senior editor at AVweb. He is an instrument rated private pilot and former owner of a Grumman American AA1B and a V-tail Bonanza.

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6 COMMENTS

    • At some point, you don’t have a choice. Textron is the only American company left that’s credibly in the training market, and they don’t offer a twin unless you want a Baron as a trainer – for about twice the price.

    • Maybe if there were any standard category American trainers that were a) designed for the purpose and/or b) modern designs. Or, if there weren’t such a bias against LSAs: the RV12 has proven itself as a trainer and the Vashon Ranger is designed as one, but after 17 years of the aviation establishment insisting that LSAs aren’t real airplanes, what can you expect?

      Cessna dropped the C152 decades ago and people have had to put up with the C172 in the training role since. Neither is a modern design: you couldn’t sell a 152 in the training market today; the cabin is too small. The 172 is barely any better; people use them because that’s what there is.

      Piper has redesigned the PA28 as a 3-seater for training at a lower price point than the 4-seater (nice piece of price discrimination, kudos to the marketing person who came up with that) but the basic airframe and engine are still 60 years old. I guess you can always market that as “proven”; that’s how lack of innovation is always marketed in aerospace.

  1. The “trainer” was perfected so there is no real way to improve on the basics. What we need are innovations to cut build times to as close to zero as possible. I keep thinking of mass produced foam/fiberglass wings and surfaces like ARF model airplanes. Make 20 complete wings an hour and let them cure for a few more. Crank them out like model airplanes.

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