Tall Pilots: Most confortable, Meridian, TBM850, PC-12, or something else like the Kesterel (?)

I have an 2007 SR22 TN, that I absolutely love. However, eventually, I may get something faster, like The Jet

I am tall, about 6’4" and weigh too much (255). It is a tight fit in the SR22. The Jet’s mockup is very comfortable. Does anyone have an opinion on the alternatives. I was not able to comfortably fit in the Meridian. Someone mentioned that of all things, the Eclipse is a comfortable airplane for tall pilots.

I am curious about the Kesterel(?) - sorry about the spelling, the PC-12, and the TBM.


I am a short (5’8") Italian but I had mentors and co-pilot over 6’ and doing pretty well in the Eclipse’s cockpit. The seats can be adjusted both vertically and horizontally and there is no bulkhead behind them.

As for the PC-12, there are almost 1,000 of them flying around the US, so I’d just see if you can get someone to let you sit in one with the pilot seat lowered all the way. I can send you some measurements if you like. I am 5’11" and with the seat all the way down have a lot of head clearance, but can’t quantify that for you exactly right now.

Having adjustable rudder pedals is also something to look for…some tall folks can fit in a cockpit in terms of head clearance, but feel like their legs are bunched-up because the rudder pedals cannot be adjusted back-and-forth enough (or at all).


That’s what I have heard as well. I had an instructor / mentor who weighed over 300 and he got in and out of the cockpit with relative ease, much to my surprise. One of the top independent instructors is something like 6’ 7" and he has no problem. His wingspan is such that he can close and latch the left-side cabin door from the copilot seat! As Guiseppe said, the Eclipse seats can be lowered almost to the floor.

The Kestrel will no doubt provide easy access for the tall and large. That’s one of Alan’s biggest criteria.

You will easily fit in the Kestrel mock-up.


Looking forward to the Kestrel Plane. Might be just the ticket for a step up machine. Thanks, Tom

6’6" and 210 lbs here and I have tried all of them- in order of best to worst:
Eclipse > mustang > TBM850 > phenom 100 > meridian In terms of planes in development, the Cirrus jet is huge and the kestrel also seems spacious. But these are not yet certified.

I guess I have not tried the PC12.

Rudy, you are tall but you are not big. I had a guy who was 6’6" and 290 lbs. He struggled to get in and wasn’t very comfortable from my perspective. Rode in the back on the return and was happy to allow someone else upfront.

I noticed that this gentleman had issues no matter where we went - traveling in a car, going to dinner, etc. 6’6" is tall but the girth difference was hard to describe. You are very mobile, while he wasn’t even close.

Now, I’m not a small guy by girth but I make up for it by being relatively short.

I took a couple of 6’5" brothers up in the 210 who both weigh around 280lbs, and before I had a chance to say a word, one of them walks head first into the wing which coincidentally was right at his forehead height (was wearing a hat looking down)! he was laid out flat on the pavement and his brother ran over to try and help him up. just as he got there there to help, the first brother regains consciousness, and begins swinging throwing punches at his brother, thinking he was in a fight which resulted in him being flat on the pavement.

Rudy – I’m the same size as you, and would put the TBM ahead of the Mustang, i.e.:

Eclipse > TBM > Mustang > Meridian

I can fit in a TBM, but not a Mustang. Might have been imperfect seat adjustment in the Mustang, but I think we tried to make it as roomy as possible. The center yoke is just in the way, if you’re too tall.

The Eclipse works because the seat will go back pretty far, and the side stick leaves more leg room than a center yoke.

You definitely didn’t have your seat right on the Mustang! I’m 6’3" and 300 lbs. The Mustang is a much more comfortable ride than the TBM. They were both more comfortable than the Eclipse and the worst by far is the Meridian. I owned 3 TBMs and now a Mustang. The Mustang fuselage is 6" wider and 6" taller than the TBM.

The most spacious pilot seat I’ve ever had was in a Cessna 182RG. I think it may have more room in front than any of these small jets or turboprops.

I haven’t flown anything bigger than a VLJ.

Took a couple of photos for you today. I am 5’ 11" and with the seat all the way down it looks like about 6-6.5" of clearance…

This is what my legs look like with the seat all the way back and the rudder pedals cranked all the way forward…


What’s that funny curved black thing above your knees? Looks like it takes up some space. [;)]

It’s the latest and greatest new thing in aviation…it’s amazing no one ever thought of it before!

You know the Swiss…always living on the ragged edge of innovation. [:D]


I used to have a problem with cirrus visibility when looking to the right or left sides. I solved that tilting the back of the seat a little. Now it’s comfortable.

I think Rudy has it right… i own an SR22 TN and have owned a Meridian as well. i have about 150 hours right seat in a PC-12, and have spent time in the Eclipse, Mustang and TBM. Nothing is as comfortable as the Cirrus for sure. They make SUCH a great cockpit, but it is unfortunately neither fast nor pressurized. Between all the others, the Meridian is by far the smallest and most uncomfortable front seat. The Eclipse is a remarkably comfortable cockpit with highly customizable rear seating configurations and is a very comfortable plane to fly from the front or the back. Almost 6’s between the TBM and the Mustang for cockpit comfort, but have to give edge to the Mustang for simply being larger and more spacious. With so many great options between the TBM, Mustang, Eclipse and the PC-12, it really comes down to money and mission.

41,000 feet in both jets, each with 1100nm range, vs. 31,000ft ceiling in the TBM with a 1400nm range, 28,000 ft ceiling in the Meridian and PC-12. 100gph burn in the mustang vs. 75 in the Eclipse, vs. 60 in the TBM and PC-12, and 40 in the Meridian.

Two year warrantee on the Eclipse and Meridian, 3 year on the Mustang and an unbelievable 5 years on the TBM. $2.5m price tag for an eclipse, $2.3m for the Meridian, $3.1m for the Mustang (after the 3 for free rebate), $3.5m on the TBM, and $4.5m for the PC-12. 260kts for Meridian and PC-12, 320kts TBM, 340kts Mustang and 375kts for the Eclipse. You can do your own assessment of rear seating needs but none are as customizable as the TBM with the elite config.

Lots of factors more than front seat headroom to consider, but how great a life do we live that we get to ask these kinds of questions?? Not one of these planes is going to be a disappointment. it’s all just shades of great;) enjoy whatever you end up flying and expect none to be as fun as a Cirrus!

Great first post Richard! Some very useful information presented in a very clear and concise way for those of us considering what is next after Cirrus.



Just a small point, the ceiling for the PC-12 is 30,000 FT.

Of course, you have to do the RVSM paperwork in any plane to go above FL280.