Composite Aircraft Return to KC Rental Market

N793US - KCAC DA40XL RentalWas so excited yesterday when I was looking around on the Diamond Aircraft site and discovered a local FBO (KCAC) had recently been selected as a Diamond distributor — Okay, so I was only moderately intrigued at this point; give me a second I’ll get to the good part…the rest of the story after the jump.

After reading the KCAC press release I wondered if there was possibly of some Diamond aircraft in the future for the mostly Piper rental fleet at the KCAC Flight Academy. A quick login to the web scheduler and sure enough — a new 2007 DA40 XL now available for rental (okay that’s when I got excited). The rental rate you ask? $155/hour or $145/hour (club rate) which seems competitively priced compared to other rentals on the field. A G1000 C172SP at Air Associates (across the field at KOJC) is $125/hour or $120/hour (block); the G1000 C182T is $185/hour or $180/hour (block). As far as G1000 aircraft are concerned this is a good sweet spot I think for KCAC.

I have wanted to take a flight in a Diamond for a long time, however, the last Diamond rentals I knew about in KC were: (A) Two Diamond Katanas back in 2001 when Aerostadt (now out of business) was at New Century (KIXD) and (B) most recently, when ATD Flight Systems based out of Downtown (KMKC) had a DA40 which was sold last winter not long after it showed up in their fleet.

I called KCAC yesterday and the person at the desk said only the flight academy manager was authorized to checkout people in the DA40 currently — I promptly scheduled a lesson for Tuesday evening (9/4) to see if I could complete the checkout before our XC trip to Iowa in a few weeks. Since I have already done a G1000 checkout in the Cessna models across the field, I hope the transition is not too difficult.

I want to applaud a local FBO for finally bringing back a composite airplane to the rental fleet in the Kansas City area. I think this is a very smart move for KCAC and hopefully a good option for renters wanting to fly some of the newer aircraft technology. I hope they plan to add a DA42 for multi engine training sometime in the future!

More to come after Tuesday…

Update Tuesday 9/4: My flight instructor had to cancel our scheduled flight for this evening. We have moved our lesson to Friday afternoon. I hope to have an updated post sometime this weekend.

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