Carenado released their Cessna 208B Grand Caravan today, and while there are a few minor caveats worth noting before you run out and buy this one, it marks Carenado’s first release of one of their newest “state of the art” files to the XP market. That said, this first version has “limited functionality” in XP10, i.e., it was not specifically built for XP 10, but other than that the ACF appears superior in all respects – after a quick look around – and this ACF presents a fresh, first tier Carenado Class product to our market.
Think of it this way…as good as the F33A and the Seneca are, the Caravan is going to be of serious interest to a lot of people looking for one of Carenado’s recent files. Some highlights?
First thing to note: the panel, and do not confuse this with other GA singles. It’s not. This is a turbine powered commercial/light utility workhorse capable of operations in almost all known conditions/environments, and the Carenado version is equipped as such. This is NOT a GA trainer, nor is this aircraft as easy to fly in “real life” as a Piper Archer. IF you want to “step up” to more complex OPS this could well be a logical next purchase for many of you, but the inherent complexity of this aircraft is well represented.
Documentation is thorough, and you’ll want to read the material over conscientiously before going out in this one. That said, the ACF has pronounced torque steer that will keep you on your toes during takeoff, and the aircraft’s STOL characteristics are readily apparent…and a blast in practical use.
The panel at night in v9.70 (above). Below, on the ramps at Lugano.
Class leading exterior detailing sets the stage of course, with about ten million cargo compartments available to load for those trips out of Rancho Cucamonga Estates. The sound files are extraordinary…pan around the aircraft while in exterior view – with some good headphones on! Wow!
Once again, Dan Klaue and the Carenado team have produced a real winner, and this aircraft represents something a lot of us have been waiting for. After just a short time flying the bird I can recommend this one, but we’ll work her up slowly over the next few days as well. The file is currently available at the Carenado e-store, priced at 29.95USD. FlightTime56 will have a close inspection up for you soon too, and we’ll follow-up with expanded operational coverage, as well as of the version 10 update as soon as it’s available.