Beechcraft C-12 Huron

The C-12 Huron is the military designation for a series of twin-engine turboprop aircraft based on the Beechcraft Super King Air and Beechcraft 1900. C-12 variants are used by the United States Air Force, United States Army, United States Navy and United States Marine Corps. These aircraft are used for various duties, including embassy support, medical evacuation, as well as passenger and light cargo transport. Some aircraft are modified with surveillance systems for various missions, including the Cefly Lancer, Guardrail and Project Liberty programs.

Beechcraft C-12 Huron
Class Aircraft
Type Transport
Manufacturer Beechcraft
Origin United States of America
Country Name Origin Year
United States of America 1974
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Greece View
Israel View
Pakistan View
United States of America 1974 View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
Beechcraft 1974 View

The first C-12A models entered service with the U.S. Army in 1974 and was used as a liaison and general personnel transport. The aircraft was essentially an "off-the-shelf" Super King Air 200, powered by the type's standard Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-41 engines.

The U.S. Navy followed suit in 1979, ordering a version of the Super King Air A200C (modified with a 52 inch by 52 inch cargo door from the Super King Air 200C), designating it the UC-12B, for logistics support between Naval and Marine Corps air stations, air facilities, and other activities, both in CONUS and overseas. The cabin can readily accommodate cargo, passengers or both. It is also equipped to accept litter patients in medical evacuation missions. Through 1982, the Navy ordered 64 of these aircraft.

A U.S. Air Force variant of the plane for surveillance roles primarily over Afghanistan and Iraq is the MC-12 Liberty. For that variant, Beechcraft builds the basic plane and then sends it to Greenville, Texas where sophisticated Intelligence, Surveillance & Reconnaissance equipment is installed by L-3 Communications Missions Integration. As of 2013 the Liberty program has exceeded 300,000 combat flying hours.

To meet the needs of transporting larger groups, the U.S. Army purchased six C-12J aircraft, based on the Beechcraft 1900C commuter airliner. One of the military C-12Js is used for GPS jamming tests at the 586th Flight Test Squadron, Holloman Air Force Base, New Mexico. Another is based at the 517th Airlift Squadron, Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska. Three were based at the 55th Airlift Flight, Osan Air Base, South Korea. They have been relocated to the 459th Airlift Squadron, Yokota Air Base, Japan. The remaining two are used by U.S. Army Aviation.

Although the UD- series 1900s were manufactured exclusively for military use, the United States military and other military and government organizations use 1900s from other series such as the UB-series 1900C, and 1900Ds which may be found elsewhere.


King Air 200-based variants

  • C-12A
  • UC-12B
  • NC-12B
  • TC-12B
  • C-12C
  • C-12D
  • RC-12D
  • UC-12D
  • C-12E
  • C-12F
  • RC-12F
  • UC-12F
  • RC-12G
  • RC-12H
  • C-12L 
  • UC-12M
  • RC-12M
  • RC-12N
  • C-12R
  • C-12T
  • C-12U
  • RU-21J
  • RC-12X
  • C-12V

King Air 350-based variants

  • C-12S
  • MC-12W Liberty
  • UC-12W

Beechcraft 1900-based variant

  • C-12J


Role Military utility aircraft
Manufacturer Beechcraft
Introduction 1974
Status Active service
Primary users United States Air Force
United States Army
United States Marine Corps
United States Navy
Produced 1974–present
Unit cost US$6 million
Developed from Beechcraft Super King Air

General characteristics

  • Crew: 1–5
  • Capacity: 13 passengers
  • Length: 43 ft 9 in (13.34 m)
  • Wingspan: 54 ft 6 in (16.61 m)
  • Height: 15 ft 0 in (4.57 m)
  • Wing area: 303 ft² (28.2 m²)
  • Empty weight: 7,755 lb (3,520 kg)
  • Max. takeoff weight: 12,500 lb (5,670 kg)
  • Powerplant: 2 × Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-42 turboprops, 850 shp (635 kW) each


  • Maximum speed: 333 mph (289 knots, 535 km/h) at 15,000 ft (4,600 m)
  • Range: 2,075 mi (1,800 nm, 3,338 km) with maximum fuel and 45 minute reserve
  • Service ceiling: 32,800 ft (10,700 m)
  • Rate of climb: 2,450 ft/min (12.5 m/s)
  • Wing loading: 41.3 lb/ft² (201.6 kg/m²)
  • Fuel consumption: 0.1667 gal/mi
  • Power/mass: 0.14 hp/lb (220 W/kg)

End notes