Beech Model 200 Super King Air / C-12
|PASSENGER, EXECUTIVE TRANSPORT||Virtual Aircraft Museum / USA / Beech|
On 27 October 1972, Beech flew the prototype of a new and improved member of the King Air family which has become known as the Beech Model 200 Super King Air. It differs from King Air 100s by having greater wing span, the conventional tail unit replaced by a T-tail, and increased fuel capacity for more powerful Pratt & Whitney PT6A-41 turboprop engines. These changes make it possible for the improved version to operate at a higher gross weight. First deliveries of Super King Airs were made in early 1974, and the better capability of this aircraft resulted in the company receiving contracts for the supply and support of 34 examples modified for service with the US Army. These are powered by 559kW PT6A-38 turboprop engines, and were allocated the designation C-12A subsequent military orders for the C-12A have to date included 27 and 30 for the US Army and USAF respectively. Other service variants are the UC-12B (66 ordered) for the US Navy/Marine Corps, powered by 634kW PT6A-41 turboprops; the C-12C (14) for the US Army with PT6A-41 engines; the generally similar C-12D (27) for the US Army, but with an added cargo door; and the special-mission RU-21J (three) bristling externally with antennae and equipped for the requirements of the US Army's 'Cefly Lancer' programme. More recent variants are the RC-12D 'Guardrail V electronic reconnaissance platform, C-12E upgraded transport for the USAF, C-12F transport for USAF and UC-12F for the Navy, RC-12H reconnaissance variant and UC-12M utility transport.
The cargo door developed for the US Army's C-12D has been available as an option for civil production since 1979, and in April 1981 Beech introduced a new version, identified as the Super King Air B200. It differs by having PT6A-42 turboprop engines which offer improved cruising performance.
Super King Air Model 200T: designation of two specially-equipped aircraft for the French Institut Geographique National for high-altitude photographic and weather observation duties;
Super King Air Maritime Patrol 200T: maritime patrol/multi-mission aircraft, with new outboard wing panels to provide for installation of wingtip fuel tanks, strengthened landing gear, hatch for dropping survival equipment, bubble observation window in aft cabin, and search radar with a 360° scan underfuselage radome; orders include 13 for Japan Maritime Safety Agency, and one for Uruguayan navy;
Super King Air B200C: version of civil B200 with a cargo door as standard;
Super King Air B200CT: version of civil B200 with a cargo door and removable wingtip fuel tank provisions as standard;
Super King Air B200T: version of the civil B200 with removable wingtip fuel tank provisions as standard;
Super King Air 300: improved version with PT6A-60A turboprops each rated at 783kW and corresponding increase in take-off weight. The 300LW is a lightened version optimised for European operations;
1300 Commuter: King Air B200 version for commuter airlines. Accommodates up to 13 passengers with an optional belly luggage pack.