VAN'S RV-12It's a two-seat all-metal side-by-side airplane with a large cabin that seats the occupants ahead of the wing spar for maximum room and superb visibility. There are several features that make it a unique RV:

The RV-12 meets the certification standards of the Light Sport Aircraft category and the RV-12 is eligible to be licensed as a LSA: E-LSA for aircraft built from one of our kits or S-LSA for the factory built model. (You can find information on the Factory Build RV-12 at

Extensive and thorough testing has demonstrated compliance with LSA performance and structural requirements.

It is what we say it is and does what we say it does, and we have the test data to prove it! Extensive testing means the RV-12 is not the first LSA kit on the market, but it might be the best understood.

The wings are quickly and easily removable. Using methods proven over decades in high-performance sailplanes, two people can have the wings off an RV-12 in less than five minutes, making the airplane easy to transport on a trailer and keep off-airport.

It is powered by a Rotax 912ULS 100 hp engine. This rugged little engine hasn't become the world-wide standard in light sport aircraft by accident. Extended real world experience has shown it to be durable, reliable, and economical. It can use either unleaded autogas or 100LL.

The RV-12 is equipped with a new ground-adjustable Sensenich composite propeller Ч light, smooth and affordable. The low empty weight allows a generous useful load Ч two 210 lb people, 20 gallons of fuel and 50 lbs of baggage Ч something rare in the Light Sport Category.

How can an RV-12 be licensed?

The RV-12 was designed to the ASTM standards governing Light Sport Aircraft category and intended to be licensed in the Experimental Light Sport (E-LSA) category. In July, 2009, Van's Aircraft received Special Light Sport Aircraft (S-SLA) approval for the RV-12 prototype, paving the way for individuals to receive E-LSA certification.

Although the E-LSA category does not permit builders to alter the design (no unapproved engines, propellers, avionics, etc. are allowed) it does have some attractive features. In the E-LSA category, there is no "51%" rule, and no restriction on who may assist in building the airplane. This allows any amount of assistance or even a fully professionally-built airplane.

The FAA has evaluated the RV-12 kit and found it eligible for registration in the Experimental-Amateur Built (EAB) category. While EAB rules do allow builders to make changes, it is difficult to over-emphasize the difficulties, complications and increased building time that will occur if builders choose to alter any part of the very integrated RV-12 kit.

Van's is not able to provide assistance or advice on any deviations from the supplied parts and assembly instructions.

Can Accessories like Lights, or Wheel Fairing be installed?

Yes. VanТs has developed and released several optional packages. An RV-12 equipped with any or all of them is eligible for licensing in the E-LSA category:

  • A lighting package includes strobes, position lights and a landing light with steady or pulse option.
  • A two-axis autopilot.
  • A complete set of wheel fairings that protect the wings and tail while adding a couple of knots.
  • A complete interior package with carpets, sidewall covers etc. Several color combinations are available.

RVЦ12 Specifications

Exterior Dimensions
Span 26Т 9Ф
Length 19Т 11Ф
Height 8' 4"
Wing Area 127 sq. ft.
Empty Weight 740 lbs
Gross Weight 1320 lbs
Wing Loading(gross weight) 10.4 lbs/sq. ft.
Power Loading(gross weight) 13.2 lbs/hp
Engine Rotax 912ULS
Propeller Sensenich Composite ground adjustable
Fuel Capacity 20 US gallons
Cabin Width 43Ф
Baggage 50 lbs

Removable Wings

The RV-12 was designed from the start to be "trailerable." Light, easily removable wings make it practical to keep the airplane at home, or hangar it in corners where nothing else will fit.

Pull a pair of pins behind the seats and the wings come off in a few seconds. All control and wiring connections are automatic and an ignition interlock prevents the engine from starting if the wings are not properly installed.

Glass Panel

Glass Panel RV-12The RV-12 panel may be configured according to the builder's choice and budget. Two basic systems are The Dynon Skyview and the Garmin G3X Touch. Both use the GTR-200 radio/intercom (European customers can select the GTR-225 with 8.33kHz frequency spacing), and include a Mode S transponder and 406 mHz ELT. Proprietary switch and fuse panels combine with wiring harnesses supplied in the airframe kits to make the sophisticated panel truly "plug-and-play." A useful mapbox occupies the right side panel, which can optionally be replaced with a second display. Each system also has the option of a two axis autopilot and ADS-B weather & traffic (US only).

Four Stroke Rotax Power

The 100 hp four-stroke Rotax 912 ULS has become the most widely used engine in the world in Light Sport class aircraft. And for good reason Ч itТs proven itself in all kinds of conditions, all over the world. ItТs designed to operate on unleaded auto fuel. Altitude compensating carburetors automatically adjust mixture and a gearbox reduction drive keeps the prop in the most efficient rpm range.

RVЦ12 Performance

Engine Rotax 912ULS
Speeds and ranges in statute mph (sm)
Speed - Gross Weight
Top Speed 135 mph
Cruise (7500Т @ 5500 rpm) 131 mph
Cruise (7500Т @ 5000 rpm) 116 mph
Stall Speed 47 mph
Ground Performance - Gross Weight
Takeoff Distance 700 ft.
Landing Distance 525 ft.
Climb/Ceiling - Gross Weight
Rate of Climb 900 fpm
Ceiling 13,800 ft.
Range (7500Т @ 5500 rpm) 555 miles
Range (7500Т @ 5000 rpm) 614 miles

RVЦ12 Performance