The Legendary Pilatus PC-12
The Pilatus PC-12 has been the cornerstone of the PlanseSense® fractional program since its inception in 1995. The aircraft’s reliability, efficiencies, affordable operating costs, and unique capabilities made it the perfect choice for private fliers looking to reach everything from remote destinations to big cities. PlaneSense, Inc. launched its program with serial number 120, just the 20th PC-12 to be manufactured. It was the perfect aircraft to fit PlaneSense’s mission of providing world class private flights for a responsible price point, and N112AF, as it became known, served the fleet well.
The Pilatus PC-12 has become one of the most sought-after aircraft in the world. In fact, in its 2019 survey, Business Jet Traveler Magazine the PC-12 received 70% of the votes as the aircraft of choice, far exceeding any other contender. Acclaimed for its ability to access short runways, including grass and dirt airstrips, the aircraft has earned a reputation of versatility and flexibility for just about any mission. A large cargo door and generous interior storage allow it to easily transport a wide variety of cargo. It has been called a “workhorse” but the PC-12 offers such a smooth, comfortable flight and spacious cabin, that it has become the perfect business aircraft with just the right amount of luxurious touches.
It’s no wonder PlaneSense, Inc. built its fractional fleet on the foundation of this unique aircraft, and continues to manage the largest commercial fleet of PC-12 turboprops in the world. The PC-12 allows PlaneSense to offer what no other fractional program in the U.S. can – a cost-effective private flight option with a business aircraft capable of accessing thousands more airports than other programs with all the amenities and convenience afforded through private travel. At home in the largest of metro hubs and remote runways alike, the PC-12 gets business travelers closer to their clients and leisure travelers to destinations inaccessible by other aircraft.
In an effort to stay on top of the latest technology, PlaneSense, Inc. keeps its fleet young, cycling out PC-12s within ten years. But there’s still a lot of life left in these aircraft after they stop flying PlaneSense® fractional owners. Case in point, a PC-12 owned by a medical testing company was recently featured on the front page of the New York Times as part of a story covering COVID-19 testing in New Jersey. This very PC-12, serial number 687, was once part of the PlaneSense® fleet. PlaneSense took delivery of the aircraft in February 2006 where it was assigned the tail number N687AF. It flew more than 9,000 hours in the fractional program before being sold in 2016. Now serving on the front lines of the COVID-19 fight, its mission has changed, but its value has remains strong. The same medical testing company also purchased N112AF, that very first PlaneSense PC-12, which also continues to fly today. It returns to the PlaneSense headquarters on occasion, no longer sporting its blue and white stripes, but looking right at home among the newer PC-12s on the ramp.