The Harvard - Pilot trainer for three decades
THE Harvard. For thousands of New Zealanders it is probably the RNZAF's best known aircraft. It features in the log books and experience of thousands of young men who have trained as pilots with the RNZAF since 1941, and to people throughout the country it is synonymous with a rasping engine sound (caused by the direct drive propellor and resulting high tip speeds) and the trailing smoke of Air Force aerobatic teams.
By the time the last Harvards are withdrawn from the RNZAF at the end of this year the type will have seen service in this country for close on 36 years. It will have been the Air Force's longest-serving type