I visited Van’s Aircraft today with a couple of friends and took demo rides in the RV-7A and the RV-10. I went there really to confirm that I wanted the RV-10. I currently own a 1/4 share of a nice Cessna Cardinal. It’s a great plane, but like many GA aircraft, it is really underpowered which translates into a poor useful load and rather anemic climb. I’d also love to have a little faster cruise speed and better range. The RV-10 has a much larger engine which results in a great useful load and great climb rate and is 30-40kts faster than the cardinal.
While I’d love to have an aerobatic aircraft (and hopefully will one day), I primarily need a fast IFR cross-country plane. I was fairly certain before the visit that the RV-10 was the plane I would choose, but I was even more impressed with the plane than I expected I would be.
Update 12/17/2008: Unfortunately, the collapse of the economy (and our net worth) made the RV-10 an unwise choice at this time. Instead, I’m going to build an RV-7 now and will hopefully build an RV-10 after I finish with the RV-7.