The AV-42C (also known as the Kestrel) is a Tilt-jet VTOL Attack/Transport aircraft available to the Allied faction. It was the first aircraft implemented in VTOL VR and largely serves as the game's namesake. Its tilt-jet VTOL flight setup gives it a surprising amount of mobility in the field. It is capable of taking off from and landing on both landing strips and helipads alike. Its notable thrust capability allows it to more easily carry heavier loadouts than aircraft such as the F/A-26B generally could.
Additionally, the AV-42C has full carrier deployment compatibility; it has both a launch bar for carrier takeoffs and an arrestor hook for carrier landings. It also includes a refueling port near the top of the aircraft to facilitate Aerial Refueling, thereby increasing its overall maximum flight range.
The AV-42C's VTOL capability means that it flourishes in the field of air-to-ground combat. It is capable of equipping a myriad of missiles and bombs across its pylons, allowing it to fill a wide variety of ground-based combat roles. In horizontal flight, the AV-42C functions well as a strike aircraft; it can launch missiles at and drop bombs on targets at high speeds before going back around to make further passes. In vertical flight, however, it becomes a formidable asset in close air support tactics; its stabilized vertical flight allows it to make clean strafing runs against ground targets while maintaining a strong positional advantage against threats such as MANPADS units on the ground.
The biggest drawback of the AV-42C is that it remains somewhat vulnerable to hostile interceptor aircraft. As far as maneuverability goes, VTOL aircraft generally aren't very nimble in the skies, so one should be extra careful in the presence of enemies with radar-guided missiles available. Additionally, unlike aircraft like the F/A-26B, the AV-42C has no onboard radar and can only equip heat-seeking missiles, making it a nonviable option for engaging hostile aircraft in an offensive posture.
The AV-42C is uniquely able to load up and transport allied infantry units. There is a switch in the right side of the AV-42C's cockpit for controlling the side doors for the passenger compartment. Passenger transport is facilitated through objectives and triggers in the Mission Editor. To receive passengers, the AV-42C must be landed and have its doors open. From there, passengers will load into the AV-42C and can be transported to other destinations and let out the same way they would be let in. Each soldier loaded into the AV-42C adds 90 kg of mass to the aircraft while they are present.
Main article: AV-42C Hardpoints
|AV-42C • F/A-26B • F-45A|
|Aircraft||AV-42C • B-11 Bomber • E-4 Overlord • F-45A • F/A-26B • KC-49 Tanker • MQ-31|
|Ground Units||C-RAM Truck • Infantry (MANPADS) • M1 Tank • Rocket Artillery Truck • SRAD|
|Stationary Emplacements||Fire Ctrl Radar P • Storage Tent A • SAM Launcher P|
|Sea||Aircraft Carrier • Allied Cruiser • Assault Carrier|
|(Parenthesis) denote unit variants.|