In 1999, representatives of the US skydiving market approached the then Pacific Aerospace Corporation, wanting an enlarged version of the Cresco aircraft. The skydiving community needed an aircraft that:
- Would carry 17 skydivers to altitude and return to the point of departure in approximately 15 to 16 minutes.
- Would not break down under continual use.
- Was easy to fly, inexpensive to maintain, insure and operate.
- Would meet the needs of the drop zone operator on delivery, without further modifications and expense.
- Utilized common, readily available components.
Pacific Aerospace Corporation decided to embark on an ambitious development programme for a new utility aircraft. The final design brief called for a strong rugged aircraft with STOL performance for freight, passenger, agricultural, photography; any market that demanded a well engineered utility aircraft.
On March 10th, 2004, the US Federal Aviation Administration certified the PAC 750XL under the very latest revisions of Part 23. After the exhaustive development programme, little of the original Cresco remained. Wings, ailerons, flaps, fuel system, etc. have been either replaced or modified.
Taking the aircraft from initial drawings to FAA certification took about 52 months. In the aircraft certification business, for a new product, this was a remarkable feat.
While initially developed for the skydiving market, the attributes of the 750XL also made it ideal for other market segments for which it is in wide use around the world particularly freight, passenger and aerial survey work.