The NEW RV-12iS

The NEW RV-12iS

It’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 here 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 your choice of a Rotax 912iS Sport or 912ULS 100 hp engine. These rugged little engines have not become the world-wide standard in light sport aircraft by accident. Extended real world experience has shown it to be durable, reliable, and economical with maintenance availability worldwide. It can use either unleaded autogas or 100LL.
  • The RV-12 is equipped with a ground-adjustable Sensenich composite propeller — light, smooth and affordable. The low empty weight allows a generous useful load — two 185 lb people, 20 gallons of fuel and 50 lbs of baggage — something rare in the Light Sport Category

Check out the photos of RV-12is above

How long will it take to build an RV-12iS?
We estimate the average builder will spend about 700-900 hours to complete an un-painted RV-12.

How can an RV-12iS be licensed?
The RV-12 was designed to the ASTM standards governing Light Sport Aircraft category and is intended to be licensed in the Light Sport (LSA) category. The airplane is available as a fly away S-LSA aircraft or may be built from a kit as an E-LSA aircraft.

A design focus of the redesign from RV-12 to RV-12iS was strengthening the aircraft for real world commercial use in a flight school for training as an SLSA aircraft. We believe the safe handling characteristics, economical operation and maintenance and modern technology make the RV-12iS an attractive asset on any flight line.

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. Van’s 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(s) with steady or pulse option.
  • A two-axis autopilot. An autopilot control panel independent of the EFIS screens.
  • 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.

What’s the RV-12iS Kit Like?
The RV-12iS is the culmination of forty-four years’ experience manufacturing the best aircraft kits available. The result is an exceptionally complete kit with parts that fit very, very well. All metal parts are completely formed and pre-punched with fastener holes. All hardware is included. Every detail of the engine installation, instrument panel, fuel system, landing gear and airframe is carefully designed and optimized for performance and building ease. No special tools are required — forget the jokes, it really does assemble with simple hand tools. The instructions and building directions (patterned on the very successful package used for RV-10) are composed of beautifully clear computer-generated drawings with step-by-step instructions.

What is NOT included in the kit?
Fluids and paint. That’s it.

Removable Wings
The RV-12iS 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
The 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 includes a Mode S transponder and 406 mHz ELT. Proprietary switch and fuse panels combined with wiring harnesses make the sophisticated panel truly “plug-and-play.” A useful mapbox (ULS only) 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 series has become the most widely used engine in the world in Light Sport class aircraft. And for good reason — it’s proven itself in all kinds of conditions, all over the world. It’s designed to operate on unleaded auto fuel. The iS Sport fuel injected engine is computer controlled for maximum efficiency. Altitude compensating carburetors on the ULS automatically adjust mixture. A gearbox reduction drive keeps the prop in the most efficient rpm range.

The RV-12 is sold in six separate subkits:

Empennage/TailCone Kit:
Contains all components for empennage surfaces and the fuselage aft of the rear baggage bulkhead.

Wing Kit:
Contains all components for wing and flaperons.

Fuselage Kit:
Contains all components for fuselage between firewall and rear baggage bulkhead.

Finish Kit:
Contains cowling, engine mount, canopy, wheels/brakes, nose gear components, and fuel tank components.

Powerplant Kit:
Contains new Rotax 912ULS engine, engine installation kit and a Sensenich composite ground adjustable propeller.

Avionics Kit:
Avionics, pre-tested fuselage wiring harness, engine and flight instruments, switches, fuses, etc.


For More Specs and Information Click Here

“We think the company achieved its goal of building an LSA that offers light and responsive control feel without any bad habits that might get low-time pilots in trouble” - Aviation Consumer
“In a market where most LSAs are slow sellers, Van’s hit the mark with the RV-12, delivering a model true to the company’s kit-built DNA while bridging the gap between the home-built and certified world.” - Flying Magazine
“The new RV-12 is truly a breakthrough airplane, and it will change the way you think about Van's Aircraft. This factory-built Light Sport Aircraft (LSA) is ready to fly, with no assembly required. So even if you've never touched a wrench, you can own one of these amazing airplanes.” -
“Do yourself a favor: If a low-wing, all-metal funship with wonderful handling and a good cruise are on your bucket list, don't fail to check out the Van's RV-12.” - Plane & Pilot Magazine
“With the RV-12, Van’s Aircraft created a light-sport aircraft that hit a sweet spot in the market while earning high marks from owners/builders.”
“The control response is light, nimble, solid, fighter plane-ish, and so natural and balanced, you feel like you've flown this bird all your life.” - Plane & Pilot Magazine
“The RV-12 may be the most good-natured, docile, yet sporty LSA I've flown yet. It feels both sweet and a little sassy.” - Plane & Pilot Magazine


14401 Keil Road NE
Aurora, OR 97002 USA
Tel: 503-678-6545
How To Buy