The “first” civilian-operated, privately owned Sukhoi Su-27 Flanker in the world, according to the people who are trying to sell it, is fresh off its restoration, flew Dec. 10 at Rockford, Ill., and is now for sale. Pride Aircraft says the jet departed Runway 25 into a 15-knot headwind, after a 1,100-foot ground roll at Chicago Rockford International Airport. The jet flew locally for about 45 minutes in 7-degree air (14 Celsius) and performed multiple missed approaches before landing. According to the FAA’s online registry, the fighter is flying on a temporary certificate issued Dec. 2, 2009, that expires Jan. 1, 2010. According to Pride, the jet is the first ever to be “licensed” in the USA and one of a pair that represents “the first and only” two privately owned Flankers (both two-seat UB models) in the world.
The aircraft have been restored and relabeled (Russian placards don’t help English-reading pilots) and are fully IFR instrumented. Pride says the aircraft arrived in completely demilitarized condition and are now ready with “freshly-overhauled (zero-time)” airframes and zero-time engines. As a selling agent, Pride hasn’t listed a price, and is seeking to deter tire-kickers. But for those with the green, the company says it’s offering “by far the most extraordinary high-performance aircraft you can own.”