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Webmaster's Wisdom

Today is the tomorrow you promised yourself yesterday...



January 29-31, 2016

26th Annual Challenger Winter Rendezvous

Chateau Montebello

2016 details soon!
Click here for 2015!


APRIL 2015



Alberta Licence Plate

Click above to enlarge!

Challenger Light Sport
X series
XL-65, XS-65, XS-50

Thirty Years
In The Making

Legendary Versatility

For Overview
Click here!

For Details
Click here!

New Section
Click here!

New Easy Entry Cabin
Click picture below!

For more
X Series pics
click here!

Challenger Cinema
YouTube Videos

Challenger Canada
Flickr Photo Albums



Click here for feature!

Click here for
pictures galore!

Price is what you pay.
Value is what you get.
Warren Buffet

Challenger Cinema

Brand New Videos
Plus Classic Videos
From The DVD!

Misty Morning

Summer Escape

Ten Months To Build
A Lifetime Of Enjoyment

Flying is like making love - quicker is not necessarily better.

This Gift Of Time

Challenger Gallery

Aerial ATV

Versatility Plus!

Challenger 582

The de facto standard
for floats, heavy loads,
high density altitudes.

Click here for info,
pictures and video!

News Flash

New 582 Engines Meet US LSA ASTM Standards Alongside 4-stroke 912 & 914!

Gross Weight

New XL-65 & XS-65
Increased To 1060 Lbs!

Challenger II Classic
Increased To 960 Lbs!

February 1 - 3, 2013

1983 THEME 2013


July 20 - 26, 2015


Click here for details!


Click here for details!

Challenger Experience

Fall Foliage Floatilla

Amphibious Adventure

Click here for Picks

Hot Shots

3000 Miles

New Eyes = New Sights

The Dream Comes True

July 10-12, 2015

9th Annual Western Challenger Rendezvous

Click here for pictures!

Click here for details!

Directions are here:
Wetaskiwin, Alberta
(Near Edmonton, AB)

Click here for an account of Alberta demo flights!

AUGUST 6, 2016


10th Annual Challenger Open House
28th Annual
Gathering of Classics

Edenvale Aerodrome
(Near Barrie, ON)

Click for 2016 details
+ past pics & video!

Edenvale Classic Aircraft Foundation

Gathering of Classics
Classic Planes!
Classic Cars!

Canada's Largest
Fly-in / Drive-in

Fine Dining Indoors
Good Food Outdoors

September 12, 2015

16th Annual Fly-in

Carleton Place, ON
(Near Ottawa, ON)

30 Challengers!

Click for 2015 details!

25th Annual Challenger
Winter Rendezvous
Jan 30 - Feb 1, 2015


Canada's Largest
Most Famous
Winter Aviation Event!

Click here for details
plus links to
reports, pics, videos!

The Plane & The Pump

If your ship doesn't come in, swim out to it.
Jonathan Winters

Click pictures to enlarge!

National Ultralight Inc.
Exclusive Canadian Distributor

Canada's Favourite Advanced Ultralight

Site Map | 10 Best Reasons | Airplane | Experience | Owners | FAQ | Company | Contact Us

Be Notified Of Updates  |Order Challenger Video

Canadian Support Section Canadian Dealers Section

The Challenger airframe is made by Quad City Aircraft Corp in Moline, IL.

The site map gives the big picture - the overall structure and the contents of each section.
All underlined words are links which can be clicked. Use your browser's Back button to return.
All pictures are actually links too! Click any one to see the enlargement and caption. Try it!
If you like our web slide show, download hi-res images for wallpaper and screen savers.
Click on rainbow lines for music to browse by! Try clicking below to enjoy Wonderful World!

Fly Challenger - Make Your Dreams Come True

The versatility of the Challenger line of aircraft is legendary - wheels, skis, floats, soaring, local or cross continent flights. Four seasons a year of use.
Owners enjoy a huge user community and an extensive support network.

For Challenging Times - The Lowest Acquisition & Operating Costs Of All

The current Challenger lineup has six models with a range of features, performance and prices wide enough to suit every need and every budget.
Fuel economy is unbeatable - use regular car gas - only 3-4 gallons an hour.
Acquisition costs are reasonable. Parts and service are affordable and simple.
Fly in Canada with your current licence or an affordable Ultralight Pilot Permit.

4,000 Worldwide 600 In Canada - Performance & Safety Proven Since 1983

Challengers are always in demand so the value of yours will be protected.
It's not just an expense - it's an investment - in your future and your present!
In Canada the fastest growing segment of aviation is Advanced Ultralights and
Challenger is the de facto standard, outselling the competition by 10 to 1!

Challenger is the best value in aviation - first choice of pros and newbies!

National Ultralight, exclusive distributor for Canada since 1984, offers
quick-build kits, new ready-to-fly, and first-class pre-owned Challengers.
For one-stop shopping we carry Puddlejumper floats and Turbulence skis.

A man is not old until regrets take the place of dreams.
-- John Barrymore

The Challenger Line Of Advanced Ultralight Aircraft

Quad City Aircraft Corp has manufactured the Challenger line of aircraft in Moline, Illinois since 1983. It is ultralight aviation's longest running company!
National Ultralight has been the exclusive Canadian distributor since 1984!

Some 4,000 Challengers have been delivered worldwide since 1983 with over 600 owners in Canada. The Challenger Owners Association is the most active in recreational aviation. Clearly this line of aircraft is one of the most popular in aviation, and one of the most proven, safest designs in any category.

The Challenger is uniquely versatile - it switches quickly and easily between wheels, tundra wheels, skis, penetration wheel/skis, retractable wheel/skis, straight floats, amphibious floats, ... The heated cabin and an engine needing no preheating make it a true four season aircraft, even in Canada's winter. On warm summer days remove the doors and you have an open air sportster!

The Challenger's STOL performance and payload are extraordinary. A wide speed range and impressive crosswind capability, together with a cockpit having unrestricted visibility, make it a delightful and capable platform for long distance cross-country flights, as well as low and slow ultralight sightseeing.

Challengers also make great motorgliders, with recorded engine-off flights of several hours and altitude gains of many thousands of feet, even on amphibs!

There is no other airplane, at any price, with this broad mix of talents! In Canada new Challengers can qualify for the Advanced Ultralight category and be flown with a traditional licence or the easier to obtain Ultralight Pilot Permit. In the USA they can be flown as Light Sport Aircraft with a Sport Pilot Permit.

Science, freedom, beauty, adventure. What more could you ask of life?
Aviation combined all the elements I loved.
-- Charles Lindbergh --

The Evolution Of The Species

The Challenger design has stood the test of time but it has not stood still. Over the years several hundred changes have combined to let the latest Challenger take off in less distance, climb more rapidly and cruise 50 mph faster than the early machines. Wingtips to wheels it's more efficient and more durable.

In 2005 the Rotax 582 engine was added to the stable alongside the 503. This 30% increase in horsepower actually uses less fuel and is now the de facto standard for floats, heavy loads and high density altitudes. Also in 2005 we increased the gross weight by 20% and created Canada-specific packages.

The newest Rotax 582 and 503 engines are ASTM certified. Purpose built for use in aviation they have earned top marks for reliability as well as easy, affordable maintenance. Dual independent electronic ignition systems fire two spark plugs per cylinder, for redundancy plus more power and lower fuel consumption. A taller re-drive and bigger prop increase cruise and climb.

The current Challenger lineup gives six choices with a range of features, performance and prices wide enough to suit every need and every budget:
- three new Challenger Light Sport models (XL-65, XS-65 and XS-50), and
- three Classic Challenger II models (Premium, Deluxe and Legacy).

New Challenger Light Sport XL-65, XS-65, XS-50

In July 2010 the Challenger line of aircraft was expanded with the Light Sport series consisting of two brand new models - the XL-65 and XS-50. In March 2012 the line was expanded again with the new Challenger Light Sport XS-65.

The new Challenger Light Sport XL-65, XS-65 and XS-50 are the most dramatic steps forward ever taken. The XL-65, XS-65 and XS-50 incorporate numerous design enhancements driven by customer inputs. The new models are easier to fly, faster in cruise, more rugged, more ergonomic and easier to build. Prices remain very affordable even with engine and instruments.

The new XL-65 is a high power, high lift aircraft for amphibious floats, heavy loads and high density altitudes. A new wing design and a power package with 30% more thrust combine to allow an increase in gross weight from 960 to 1060 lbs. Standard 20 USgal wing tanks allow for the creation of a baggage compartment in the fuselage behind the passenger seat.

The new XS-65 is a clip wing derivative of the XL-65 with all the same features including the 582 power pack but with a clip wing four feet shorter. The XS-65 is optimized for people who want speed. The maximum cruise speed is 100 mph - lightning fast for an ultralight! The XS-65 has an impressive payload of nearly 600 lbs. With its fast cruise, long range wing tanks and a baggage compartment in the fuselage the XS-65 makes a great cross-country machine.

The new XS-50 is optimized as an economical go-fast airplane for wheels and skis. Cruise speed is increased to 90 mph thanks to a 26 ft clip wing and new streamlining features. The XS-50 uses the ASTM certified 50 hp Rotax 503 and has a 960 lb gross weight. The XS-50 comes standard with a 10 USgal fuselage tank. Available options are a 17 USgal fuselage tank or 20 USgal wing tanks. The wing tanks allow for a baggage compartment in the fuselage.

The new Light Sport models all retain the docile nature, low stall speed and amazing crosswind capability of previous generations of Challengers. The combination of outstanding STOL performance plus heavy duty landing gear and hydraulic disc brakes allow operation from short, unimproved strips.

From crisper handling to a more spacious cabin, the latest Challengers are not only more capable and comfortable they are better looking and quieter to boot!

This is why Challenger is Canada's favourite advanced ultralight!

You can't cross the sea by standing and staring at the water.
-- Rabindranath Tagore --

The Quick Tour

For a sense of why this aircraft has enjoyed amazing longevity and success, read what owners say are the ten best reasons for owning a Challenger.

If you're not too rushed, click on a rainbow line for music and browse onward!

The Grand Tour

This site contains full details on the new light sport models as well as the original classic models plus it describes the experience of flying a Challenger, introduces some of our owners, answers many frequently asked questions, and tells you about our company. All this with plenty of pictures and videos!

The site map gives the big picture - the overall structure plus section contents.

Browse through in sequence or flip through any way you wish. Your browser will change the colour of the underlined links so you know where you've been. To come back to a particular page, add it to your Bookmarks or Favorites list.

Remember to click on the small pictures to enlarge them and see the captions!

The Nitty Gritty Tour

The Challenger line of aircraft consists of two distinct series...

The Light Sport section has a wealth of facts and figures on the new
Challenger Light Sport X Series Models XL-65, XS-65, XS-50!

The Classic Airplane section has the scoop on the older Challenger models!

Challenger Info Pack & Video

This web site has superceded the traditional paper information package in detailing everything about the Challenger - from specs to prices to how to soar in a thermal. It also contains the Challenger Cinema with a great selection of videos which may be viewed online. Video is the absolute best route to truly understanding the versatility and performance of the Challenger. Some of the videos show specific aspects of the Challenger, for example the difference in takeoff and climb between the 582 and 503 engines. Other videos were created by Challenger owners who were moved to share their experiences.

All this information is here online for free. Click to our Site Map to learn what is on our site and where it is. Print pages for your personal use if you wish.

Additionally, there is a 55 minute Challenger video available in DVD format which you may order via this web page. The DVD video is an eclectic collection of old and new footage which starts with classic 1980's era material and interleaves more modern footage. This collection is intended to show you the full spectrum of the Challenger's 25 year heritage - to give you a sense of the continuing evolution and a good idea of just how far we've come since the early days!

Tour the Thousand Islands on floats, wander over gorgeous Florida greenery, skim along a snow-covered river with friends, ride a thermal upwards with the engine off. To see our past and present for yourself order the DVD!

If you think you can do a thing, or think you can't do a thing, you're right.
-- Henry Ford --

Kitplanes Magazine

Feature Now Online
Four Seasons of Adventure
Which are the best seasons for
enjoying the Challenger?
Winter, spring, summer and fall!
Click here for text and pictures.

In September 2008 a couple of hundred people drove and 56 Challengers flew
to Erie Airpark in Illinois to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Challenger!

Click here for Evolution!

Click here for Kitplanes!

Click here for Evolution!

Click here for Canuck view!
Click here for COPA article!

Click here for Canuck view!

In 2013 Canadian Challengers attended the 30th anniversary fete in Illinois!
This pilgrimage entailed a round trip by a flock of amphibious Challengers
from Quebec (3,200 km) and Ontario (2,300 km) plus a solo voyage by an amphibious Challenger from Edmonton, Alberta (4,500 km)!

Click here for feature!

Click here for 120 photos!

Click here for cover!

In 2014 National Ultralight celebrated its 30th year as the exclusive Canadian distributor!

2008 - A Quarter Century As Unchallenged Ultralight Leader - 2008

Kitplanes says Challenger is: "Ultralight Leader"
EAA says Quad City is UL's: "Longest Running Company"

In 2006 the late Dave Goulet, president of Quad City and co-designer of the Challenger,
won the prestigious John Moody Award from the United States Ultralight Association:

"The continued success of the Challenger line of aircraft has brought world wide acclaim."
"The Challenger II has been the overwhelming choice of trainer by ultralight instructors."
"More ultralight pilots have learned to fly in a Challenger than any other trainer!"

If the why is important enough, the how will happen.
-- Viktor Frankl --

Getting To Know You

Aerobatics To Amphibs

Challenger Association

8 days + 2000 km

A Beautiful Day

Discovering Ski Flying

Pilgrimage to Baddeck - An Amphibious Adventure

11th Annual Challenger Float Tour - August 2009

Dave O'Malley Annual Challenger Winter Rendezvous Poster Collection

The Challenger Winter Rendezvous posters are created by Dave O'Malley of Aerographics Ottawa. Dave is also historian and webmaster at Vintage Wings.

Following are links to reports, pictures and videos of
the last few Challenger Winter Rendezvous. For even more click here!

24th Annual Challenger Winter Rendezvous
Chateau Montebello - Jan. 31 - Feb. 2, 2014

Challenger comes complete with its own community
of owners and network of service providers!
Click here, here, here and here for 2014 photos galore!
Click here for 2014 COPA Flight article and pictures!
Click here for 2014 poster, theme and agenda!

Click the poster on the left above for large English and French versions.
Click the COPA cover on the right above for full article and pics.

23rd Annual Challenger Winter Rendezvous
Chateau Montebello - February 1-3, 2013

1983 to 2013! Time flies and so do 4,000 Challengers!
Click here for classic Return From Montebello video!
Click here, here, here and here for 2013 photos galore!
Click here for 2013 COPA Flight article and pictures!
Click here for 2013 poster, theme and agenda!

Click the poster on the left above for large English and French versions.
Click the COPA cover on the right above for full article and pics.

22nd Annual Challenger Winter Rendezvous
Chateau Montebello - February 3-5, 2012

Sun & Wind Perfect! Ice & Snow Perfect!
Over 90 Planes!
Click here for Tomorrow is Today video!
Click here for photos galore!
Click here for COPA Flight article and pictures!
Click here for 2012 theme and agenda!

Click the poster on the left above for large English and French versions.
Click the COPA cover on the right above for full article and pics.

21st Annual Challenger Winter Rendezvous
Chateau Montebello - February 4-6, 2011

Blue Sky / Warm Air / Light Wind
Click here for Full Emotion video!
Click here for More than a Feeling video!
Click here for COPA Flight article and pictures!
Click here for 2011 theme and agenda!

Click the poster on the left above for large English and French versions.
Click the COPA cover on the right above for full article and pics.

Annual Challenger
Winter Rendezvous

36 Challengers on skis!
250 Challenger aficionados!

Click for reports and pictures:

2009 2008 2007 2006
2005 2004 2003


Sample Happenings - 2006
Spring, Summer, Fall

Sample Happenings - 2005

1000 Mile Club
Seven League Boots

If you have any questions or are ready to order your Challenger,
contact us via e-mail, phone, fax or mail.

National Ultralight is located in new Hangar/Office facilities at Edenvale Aerodrome!

If you wish, we'll notify you automatically by e-mail when this site is updated!

Site Map | 10 Best Reasons | Airplane | Experience | Owners | FAQ | Company | Contact Us

To see the Challenger in action for yourself order our 55 minute Challenger video now!

Last update Nov. 6, 2015. Copyright 1983-2015 National Ultralight Inc. All rights reserved.
Text, images and graphics from this site may not be reproduced or linked without permission.