CASA (Construcciones Aeronáuticas S.A.) T12-61C – a light tactical transport aircraft in Salamanca

The CASA C-212 Aviocar is a turboprop-powered STOL medium cargo aircraft designed and built by the Spanish aircraft manufacturer Construcciones Aeronáuticas SA (CASA). It is designed for use by both civil and military operators.

The C-212 was developed during the 1960s in response to the Spanish Air Force’s need to replace much of its transport aircraft fleet and was designed to perform numerous roles, including ambulance aircraft, paratroop carrier, and utility transport. The first prototype made its maiden flight on 26 March 1971, and an order was secured from the Spanish Air Force three years thereafter. Several other customers emerged, initially from the military sector but, due to the interest of civilian airliners, CASA developed a dedicated civil version of the C-212 as well. Production of the type at the Seville (Spain) facility would continue for 40 years, with 483 aircraft produced.

Indonesia emerged as a key early customer for the C-212. During 1975, the Indonesian aircraft company IPTN successfully secured the rights to license-produce the aircraft in Bandung, Indonesia. CASA assisted the establishment of a production line there that, by 2000, had constructed a total of 95 NC-212s. The majority of Indonesian-built aircraft were sold to domestic customers, although some exports were also recorded in the Asian market. During February 2013, it was announced that Airbus (the successor company to CASA) had agreed terms with PTDI (IPTN’s successor) to fully transfer production of the C-212 to Indonesia. For a time, PTDI produced both the NC-212-200 and the -400 upgrade, which were equipped with new digital avionics and autopilot, and featured a redesigned cabin that could accommodate up to 28 passengers.

By December 2012, there were 92 operators of the C-212 around the world. These operators included numerous charter and short-haul aviation companies as well as various national air services, which commonly used as a transport, surveillance aircraft, and for search and rescue. The C-212 has been a popular aircraft among skydivers and smokejumpers due to its uncommon rear ramp arrangement amongst its competitors. In particular, the Australian airline Skytraders has used a number of C-212s to support Australian scientific research teams across Antarctica and the Southern Ocean.

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