Quest Aircraft turned over the first of many short takeoff and landing, heavy-hauling, single turboprop Kodiak aircraft to be sold “at cost” as part of the manufacturer’s Quest Mission Team (QMT) program. The Kodiak was designed for the rigors of off-airport mission work and can carry 3,100 pounds (or 10 passengers) into the air after a 760-foot ground roll, cruise more than 1,000 miles at 179 knots, and land in a little more than 900 feet. Both the company, Quest Aircraft, and the aircraft, the Kodiak, were created with the intent of filling the demands of mission aviation work. The company owes its origins and much of its startup capital to money raised by churches and mission aviation organizations. In return Quest has said it will deliver every 11th aircraft as a QMT plane to one of those organizations, “at cost.” Quest has now met that goal with its first delivery to the Mission Aviation Fellowship, and as production continues to ramp up, a second QMT aircraft is already on the line at the company’s Sandpoint, Idaho, facility. The unique capabilities of the aircraft have earned interest from other markets, as well.
Last July, demand led the company to earn a standard airworthiness certificate and type certification for parachute-jump operations. The company says that “is a first for an aircraft delivered new from the factory to the end user.” The Kodiak comes off the assembly line built for abusive off-airport use in very demanding terrain, with float attachments already built into the airframe and dual Garmin G1000s, standard.
See also AVweb’s video tour of the Kodiak.